The city with heart

July 22, 2009 council meeting minutes



Mayor Gene Allex called the regular meeting of the Danube City Council to order at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, July 22, 2009.  Council members present:  Sharon Lothert, Al Strunc, Les Schneider, Sr., and Ryan Bentley.  Absent: None


Also present:  Dan Kaufenberg, Public Works Director


A motion was made by Sharon Lothert to approve the agenda with the following additions under new business:  “Sales Tax,” “Agenda” and “Clerk & Maintenance Hours.”  Ryan Bentley seconded and the motion carried unanimously.


A motion was made by Al Strunc to approve the minutes of the regular meeting of July 8, 2009.  Les Schneider, Sr. seconded and the motion carried unanimously.


Dan Kaufenberg, Public Works Director, was present to give his monthly employee report.  Items discussed were as follows:

·         Vosika cleaned out 10 water main shut offs out of approximately 30 in town.  They seem to be turning better and all of them drained.

·         Kaufenberg has replaced 11 water meters.  Several only needed a new outside remote reader.  He will order more meters and outside remote readers at a price of $87.69 per meter/remote reader combo and $28.24 per remote reader only.  He continues to work on replacing non-working meters. 

·         Sam Smith looked at 3 non-working water shut offs (at curb).  Kaufenberg will need to order parts for them.  The curb box (pipe and lid) will cost $33.00 each, the straight rod that keeps the pipe from slipping is $8.00 each and the valves will cost $58.00 each.  He needs to order a minimum of 4. 

·         A resident approached Kaufenberg about a possible sewer problem in the 400 block of 4th Street.  In the past, the City of Danube has borrowed a big snake from the City of Renville, free of charge. Kaufenberg will call the City of Renville to ask to use the snake to check the area of concern.

·         Thein Well was in town to do the annual inspection on the wells.  Thein Well gave the suggestion to pull well pump #5.  It was last pulled in 2001.  According to Les Schneider, Sr., a past council decided that the pipes only need to be replaced a minimum of every 15 years.  Thein Well also mentioned that the valve in pump house 3 is rusted.  That one does not get used and therefore will be left alone.  It does not leak.

·         The City pick up was into the mechanic to get a new fuel tank.

·         The skid loader is getting damper springs under the pedal.  Haug Implement is doing the work, which is covered under warranty. 

·         Kaufenberg has been in touch with Art Nyquist about making a bucket for the skid loader.  Nyquist will meet with Kaufenberg next week.

·         Kaufenberg will attend a class in Redwood Falls on August 12.

·         Kaufenberg requested to use comp time on Monday, July 27.  The request was approved.

·         Sharon Lothert asked Kaufenberg if he has looked at the roof at the Community Center, as she found a puddle on the floor in the women’s bathroom.  Kaufenberg has been on the roof and is still working on it.  Al Strunc will also take a look at the roof.


·         Schneider, Sr. asked Kaufenberg to look at the sink hole in front of 401 Maple Street and to show it to Hardline when they come to do street repairs.

·         Lothert has received resident complaints about the fact that the City does not have a drop box for utility payments.  The bank in town accepts utility payments on behalf of the City.  Kaufenberg will put a mail slot in the small sliding wood door that can be used when the Clerk’s office is closed.

·         Gene Allex received complaints from 2 residents about the City office’s change in hours and about the Public Works Department’s hours.  The complaints were discussed by the council and no changes will take place at this time.  City Office hours are posted on the front door of the City Office Building.

·         Strunc asked Kaufenberg if the City has a machine for spraying weeds in the curb and gutter and at the brush site.  The City has one and Kaufenberg uses it on a regular basis.

·         Kaufenberg was asked about the progress on building a false wall in the chlorine room.  He has the framing done in well house #5.

·         The overhead doors on the fire hall were repaired.


There were no updates on the Mahoney case other than being billed by the City Attorney for some services regarding the case.


The council reviewed the upcoming Community Center and school rental schedule.  There will be a class reunion held at the Hall on Saturday, August 1, 2009 and a family reunion on Sunday, August 2, 2009.  The Danube Senior Citizens will use the Hall on Monday July 27 and August 10, 2009.  No events are scheduled at the school building in the next 3 weeks.  Rod Black reserved the school for October 6 for the Senior Expo to once again take place.


The council briefly discussed blighted properties.  There are a few that seem to have not made any progress.  Allex will speak to the police chief about them.


Other items discussed as follows:

·         Regarding the streets, there were no updates to be discussed.  Kaufenberg will call Hardline to see when they will be in Danube.

·         There was no update available for the unlicensed dogs in town.

·         Allex will be seeing Larry Zupke on Friday to discuss the FEMA plan.

·         Mediacom has added the option for business to use their phone service.

·         Highway 212 road construction was discussed.  The road should be done and opening soon.


All 8 letters sent out to property owners on 2nd Street East were received by the Clerk.  Four property owners voted “yes” to paving the road and four voted “no” to paving the road. 


A motion was made by Sharon Lothert to have the City and EDA vote in favor of hard surfacing, with curb and gutter, 2nd Street East, in order to break the tie.  Al Strunc seconded and the motion carried unanimously. 


Steps will now be taken to move forward on the project.  Before the project goes up for bids, The Clerk will call Duininck’s Construction to request that they assist the City of Danube in coming up with a cost estimate for paving the 2 gravel blocks of 2nd Street East.


The Clerk has cashed out two matured CD’s in the past two weeks and put the proceeds into the City’s Money Market Savings account at HomeTown Bank.  There is another CD maturing next week, one in August, and the City has also received its first LGA payment for 2009. 


A motion was made by Les Schneider, Sr. to put the next CD proceeds into savings unless a CD can be purchased with a higher interest.  Sharon Lothert seconded and the motion carried unanimously.


A motion was made by Al Strunc to approve the bills as submitted in the amount of $21,396.20.  Ryan Bentley seconded and the motion carried unanimously.


A motion was made by Sharon Lothert to allow Sara Wilson, City Clerk-Treasurer, to attend the 2009 Clerks’ Orientation Conference in St. Paul on August 10-12.  Al Strunc seconded and the motion carried unanimously. 


A motion was made by Sharon Lothert to have the door open between Miller’s on Main Bar and the Danube Community Center on Saturday, August 1, for a class reunion.  Les Schneider, Sr. seconded and the motion carried unanimously.


Discussion took place on the cleaning of the Community Center after events.  When the renters do the cleaning, Lothert still has to do some cleaning.  The council decided that will just be an expense that the City has to absorb.  For now, there will be no increases in the rental fees.


The Clerk and Lothert both received an e-mail from Chris Hettig stating that a manufacturing company is looking for 5000-7000 square feet of heated space to rent.  The Clerk will e-mail Hettig letting her know of the availability of the unused portion of the school building.


The filing of the sales tax on water and garbage was overlooked for the first quarter of 2009.  The clerk has taken measurers to make sure this doesn’t happen again.


Allex asked if the council packets could be available the Thursday before each council meeting.  The Clerk stated that the minutes and agenda could be available, but the financial part of the packet would be hard to get done that early. 


Strunc will be given a copy of the building ordinance so he can better answer questions asked of him by Danube residents.


The Clerk requested to leave an hour early on August 13th and to take August 4th off.

There being no further discussion, at 8:50 p.m. a motion was made by Ryan Bentley to adjourn the meeting.  Sharon Lothert seconded and the motion carried unanimously.



Respectfully submitted:  Sara Wilson, City Clerk

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