Crane Lake, Minnesota Water & Sanitary District  
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August 6, 2003 – 7:30 PM



Study Session:  7:00 – 7:30PM


Jim Pucel reviewed the Project Status Report.  A walk-through with a representative from the US Army Corps of Engineers of the functional project and work completed to date was completed.  The reimbursement process was discussed with the USACE – it will take 15 to 30 days.


An estimate was received from Wagner Construction to include time meters in the control panels for the grinder pump stations at a total cost of approximately $10,120.  This is not recommended at this point but is being looked at.


Mr. Mike Appelwick of Northeast Technical Services met with the City of Orr to discuss biosolid disposal.  Cost estimates for land applying at the Orr site, transferring to Orr and for transferring to Virginia have been requested of Mr. Appelwick.


Change Order No. 1 was developed for the Wastewater Collection System reducing costs by approximately $3,000.  St. Louis County will be providing the culverts rather than Wagner Construction.  Wagner will install the culverts.


The Eastern Service Area Report is to be completed this fall for presentation to the Board.


More information is still needed from suppliers and manufactures of grinder pumps.


John Jamnick recommended that the Board approve Partial Pay Request #2 for Wagner Construction for $269,462.18 for work completed including the access road to the treatment facility, silt fencing, seeding and erosion control and pipe placement.  He also recommended the Board approve Partial Pay Request #1 for Rice Lake for $34,029.00 for completing the majority of the rock removal at the treatment site and some of the grading.  Reimbursement Requests will come from St. Louis County CDBG for $25,705.84, which will close out the CDBG; and from Rural Development for $302,105.92, which is loan money financed through Rural Water.


Jim Pucel reviewed the upcoming work schedules.  Wagner Construction will be returning after Labor Day and will start at either Bayside drive or the discharge site or possibly both.  They anticipate the traffic will slow down after Labor Day creating a better working environment for the crews.  Rice Lake will start concrete work soon.


Regular Meeting


The meeting was called to order by Vice-Chairman Darrell Scott at 7:30PM and Bud Bystrom was welcomed as a new member of the Board.


Members present:  Managers Darrell Scott, Mike White, Jim Sanborn, Deena Congdon and Bud Bystrom.

Members absent:   None


Also present:  John Jamnick and Jim Pucel of RLK-Kuusisto Ltd., Clerk Jo Ann Pohlman, a reporter from the Cook  News-Herald, a reporter from the Voyageur Sentinel and 17 members of the community.



Motion by D. Congdon, supported by M. White to approve the minutes of the Regular Meeting of July 18,2003.  Motion carried.



Treasurer M. White stated that he was working on a forecast for the remainder of 2003 to establish the budget and levy for 2004.  A motion was made by B. Bystrom, supported by D. Congdon to approve the July Treasurer’s Report and the payment of the following bills:  Administrative:  Midwest Captions – $120.00; Jo Ann Pohlman – $179.69; Darrell Scott – $172.80 and Environmental Financial Group – $5,000.  Project:  Partial Pay Estimate #1-Rice Lake – $34,029.00; Partial Payment Estimate #2-Wagner Construction – $269,462.18.  Motion carried.



  • The correspondence was presented to the Board.
  • A motion was made by M. White, supported by D. Congdon that the correspondence be placed on file and acted upon as required.  Motion carried.


RLK-Project Status Report

  • See Study Session above.


Grinder Pumps – Rob Scott

  • M. White asked Rob Scott to assist him in researching grinder pump options.  Mr. Scott reviewed information provided to him by the Board regarding Barnes and E/ONE grinder pumps and contacted trade associations regarding industry standards for grinders to help him to provide a list of related areas for possible Board consideration of grinder pumps.
  • Mr. Scott suggested the Board may wish to consider the following:
    • Grinder pump design vs. installation specification requirements.
    • Easement installation location vs. actual best site location.
    • Grinder pump sizing vs. individual property usage requirements.
    • Rate scheduling vs. size and number of grinder pumps.
  • M. White requested that Rob Scott keep working on the project in conjunction with RLK-Kuusisto.
  • RLK is still waiting for eight more items from Barnes for comparison purposes use.


Easements/Right-of-Way Issues

  • August 6, 2003 was the final day for property owners to submit written requests to the Board for  individual grinder pump locations and/or easement changes before incurring the charges for these changes themselves.
  • All home owners on Bowser Court were contacted regarded the change in their easements resulting from differences between the road plat and the actual road location.


Environmental Financial Group

  • M. White met with Scott Harder on Monday in Duluth where they reviewed the project requirements, which include:
    • Appraising undeveloped property as to the market value if the property abuts the sewer line.
    • Establishing the ordinance without rates and fees.
    • Rates and fees would be covered under a separate ordinance created at a later date.


Request for Injunction

  • A favorable opinion was received from the Court.
  • The understanding, at this time, of the District’s financial responsibility is for our attorney fees.  All other costs and disbursements are the responsibility of the Crane Lake Property Owners for Common Sense.
  • Joseph Mihalek of Fryberger et al has contacted the Court regarding the inclusion of the expenses related to the initial hearing as well.
  • The District hopes to resolve this soon and go forward.


2003 Forecast – Loan/ 2004 Budget  Levy

  • The Court costs will be part of determining what cash will be available through 2003 and what amount will be included in the levy amount for 2004.  This will require advice from Attorney Joe Mikalek regarding actual court costs settlement amounts.




Rob Scott asked if there was any rough estimate of the expenses to the Plaintiff as a result of the Court’s decisions.  The response was the Board has no information on that.


Rob Scott asked if we originally approved $7,000 for the Environmental Financial Group?  M. White said no, the total amount approved was $20,000.


Rob Scott asked when Mr. Harder would be scheduled to be at another CLWSD meeting.  M. White responded that possibly at the next meeting.


Project Requirements

  • A list of project requirements has been prepared by M. White and distributed to the Board.
  • The list is divided into four sections:  Continuing Projects, Immediate Requirements, Current Year Requirements, and Plant Start-up Requirements.
  • The three main issues at this time are property appraisals, ordinance completion/enactment, and special assessments – A cash reserve could be built up by including a special assessment amount in this year’s levy to be collected next year.


Election of Officers

  • Election of officers for the remainder of 2003 followed.
  • D. Scott nominated D. Congdon for Chairman.  D. Congdon declined and nominated M. White for Chairman.  D. Scott was nominated for Vice-Chair; D. Congdon was nominated for Treasurer.
  • A motion was made by B. Bystrom, supported by D. Congdon to close the nominations and cast a unanimous ballot.  Motion carried.


Board Appointment Process

  • St. Louis County was responsible for eight months to fill the vacancy on the Board.
  • In the process of getting the County to take action, a way was found to transfer that responsibility to the Town Board.  The procedure to do this is in place.
  • M. White suggested a resolution be passed transferring board appointments from St. Louis County to the Town Board.  The Town Board has a policy in place for appointments to boards within the Township.
  • A motion was made by M. White, supported by J. Sanborn to pass the resolution moving the responsibility of board appointment from St. Louis County to the Town of Crane Lake Board and write a letter to the Town Board with the resolution and ask the Town Board to write a resolution; both to be submitted to Mary Frances Skala of Fryberger et al.  She would work with the County to get their approval.  There was discussion as to whether or not this would affect the Town Budget this year – it would not as this would be for next year, if the County approves.  Motion carried.


Plant Site Road Name

  • This has been on the Agenda for three months and has not been settled.
  • Contractors need a 911 address for deliveries; which has been applied for and we are in the process of obtaining.
  • The road could have potential future uses other than the treatment facility; with this in mind, it was suggested that the Town Board be asked to make the decision.
  • A motion was made by B. Bystrom, supported by M. White that the plant site road name be selected by the Town Board.  Motion carried.


Plant Operator Decision

  • M. White said that he would like to meet with John Jamnick of RLK and Mike Appelwick of Northeast Technical Service to discuss operation and maintenance of the plant.
  • If the decision is made to contract for operation, the operator should be involved during the building of the plant.
  • J. Jamnick stated that the proposal from NTS was received several months ago and the proposal should be reviewed for any changes.
  • J. Jamnick stated that many municipalities are contracting this work out and that there would be a local person here to maintain the day-to-day operations.


2002 Financial Statements

  • M. White is working on the information to be sent to the District accountant and will complete within the week.



  • Hopefully, a newsletter will be out next week.


OTHER BUSINESS – There was none.




Carole Scott was concerned that people on Bear Island would be leaving soon and that the Board should communicate with them with a survey regarding any future issues affecting them.  The Board responded that there are different options being considered.  The County ordinance currently in place must be considered in looking at changes.  The District needs to adopt an ordinance to include the Island and the rest of the lake.  An option being considered is holding tanks for seasonal property owners and a barging service to the plant.  This would increase the number of people using the treatment facility thus lowering the rate for all involved.  This would not be the time for a survey as the options have not been determined.


Nancy Nichols-Goldstein asked what other things were included in the ordinance?  John Jamnick responded that sewer use and hook-up requirements/processes were included and that the ordinance will be modeled after the MPCA ordinance with modifications for the Crane Lake area.


Jerry Cornell remarked that a couple of months back the ESA was discussed and wondered if East Bay was being considered yet.  M. White responded that the administration of the area has been left to St. Louis County and there are steps to complete the change over from County to District.  The Board attorney has written to the County and has had no response.


Carole Scott asked when the Board could expect payment from the lawsuit.  The Board did not know.


There being no further business the meeting was adjourned at 8:45PM.




J. Pohlman




Crane Lake Water & Sanitary District
P.O. Box 306 · Crane Lake, Minnesota 55725
© 2001 CLWSD