September 18, 2023 minutes

Alexandria Township

Alexandria, Minnesota 56308

Minutes of the meeting of September 18, 2023

A regular meeting of the Board of Supervisors of Alexandria Township was held on the 18th day of September, 2023 at the Alexandria Township Conference Room, 324 Broadway, and via teleconference.

ROLL CALL:  Supervisors present were Joel Dahlheimer, Rod Eldevik, Dennis Butz, Jeff Oberg and Jerry Wright.  Also present were Mark Meuwissen, Deputy Clerk, and Mona Billmark, Treasurer.  Said members formed a quorum and the meeting was called to order by Chairman Eldevik at 6:00 p.m.

The agenda was modified to include discussion of Sewer Extensions under Old Business.  Oberg, seconded by Butz, made a motion to adopt the agenda as presented.  Motion carried unanimously.

Dahlheimer, seconded by Wright, made a motion to approve the minutes of the 09/06/23 regular board meeting as written.  Motion carried unanimously.

Dahlheimer, seconded by Wright, made a motion to authorize payment of claims 23156 – 23166 in the amount of $131,623.56, EFTPS of $1,738.02 and net payroll of $803.44 totaling $134,165.02 with a transfer of funds from savings of $124,000.00.

Oberg expressed concern that the Ferguson Bros. final invoice was over $113,000 and significantly larger than the original quote.  Oberg asked Engineer Kuhn for more detail.  Kuhn explained the overage was due to several combined factors.  Irregularities and ruts in the road required patching, fill, and compaction before the overlay could be applied.  In some areas, the overlay was greater than the original quote.  Additional patching was done on other locations of Liberty Road, and the shoulders are much thicker than the ½ inch originally quoted.  Kuhn further explained the original quote included the lowest rate per tonnage compared to other bids, and this rate was used to calculate the invoice.  Only the volume of mix changed.  Kuhn said the additional tonnage used by Ferguson Bros. was at his instruction.  Kuhn believed the end result was a quality product.

To stay within the total budget of $175,000, Kuhn discussed efforts for reducing patching in other areas to offset the cost overage on Liberty Road.  He will bring more information to the next meeting.

Oberg suggested future RFP’s and quotes should contain some language on the maximum allowed overage before additional board approval would be necessary.  Kuhn agreed. Oberg also requested Kuhn provide a breakdown of the Ferguson Bros. invoice to show how much the overage was due to each of the various factors mentioned above. Kuhn will provide the information at the next meeting.

After discussion of the Ferguson Bros. invoice ended, the motion to pay bills carried unanimously.


PLANNING AND ZONING:  The Planning and Zoning Commission recommended approval of a conditional use permit (CUP) for Titus II.  The CUP would allow Titus II to convert a current structure into a retreat center.  It was noted the applicant withdrew their request to construct a park/playground.  The CUP request was modified to remove condition #11, which was related to the withdrawn park/playground.  It was also clarified that no new parking lot was requested and the new retreat center would comply with all other applicable regulations.  Oberg, seconded by Dahlheimer, made a motion to approve the CUP as modified and, should the applicant desire to pursue construction of the withdrawn park/playground within 2 years from this date, the applicant could request an update to their CUP without paying a new application fee.  Roll: Oberg, Wright, Butz, Dahlheimer, Eldevik – yes.  Opposed:  none.  Motion carried unanimously.

Township Zoning Administrator Oleson updated the town board on the Dropik property.  Several board members have observed movement and a reduction of vehicles on the property.  Consensus to instruct Oleson to consult the Township attorney on options available to the board should this situation not be resolved in a timely fashion.  Oleson to bring back options for consideration to the next meeting.

ENGINEER’S REPORT:  Engineer Kuhn stated a preliminary plan for road patching projects to be completed before winter had been developed but needed additional analysis.  Chair Eldevik expressed concern that the overage on Liberty Road didn’t leave many funds available for patching roads.  Oberg expressed concern that time was limited and the board needed a plan for the remaining projects.  Kuhn described his efforts of minimizing cost while still accomplishing the desired result.  No actions were taken by the board. Kuhn to bring a more comprehensive plan to the next meeting.

OLD BUSINESS:  It was noted the summer road maintenance contract with Alden Just Road Maintenance expires at the end of September and the new winter road maintenance contract will begin November 1st.  Alden Just has indicated his willingness to extend his present contract until November 1st.  Motion by Dahlheimer, seconded by Butz, to extend the summer road maintenance agreement until November 1, 2023.  Motion carried unanimously.

Chair Eldevik updated the board on the status of the ALASR sewer extension project.  The Township Board has been requested to agree and commit to petitioning the annexation of certain properties into the sewer district if the proposed expansion is approved by the ALASR board.  Eldevik again emphasized that areas of potential new development should get preference and other areas be left for future projects.  It was agreed that land along County Roads 81 and 82 were potential growth areas and made sense to proceed with expansion of the sewer project.   The particular properties that would need to be annexed are detailed in the ALASR proposal.  Motion by Oberg, seconded by Butz, that the board commits to petition annexation of various properties along County Roads 81 and 82 so the proposed ALASR sewer expansion proposal can proceed.  In discussion, it was noted this commitment only indicates intent should the ALASR proposal be approved. If the ALASR expansion does not occur, the township is under no obligation to pursue this annexation.  Motion carried unanimously.

New Business: Chair Eldevik stated he received a request to renew the contract with auditors Carlson-Highland but expressed he did not have enough information to make a decision.   Treasurer Billmark said we most likely had time to go back to the Township’s auditors for more information.  The request to renew the contract with Carlson-Highland was tabled.

Supervisor Dahlheimer and Alden Just identified 41 manhole covers that were either in disrepair or protruded in a manner that created problems with snow removal.  Of these, Dahlheimer stated ten were in very bad shape.  Kuhn suggested there could be some coordination with the patching to avoid duplication of efforts.  Kuhn also suggested a better asphalt mix that could make repairs quicker and less expensive.  The town board agreed their current contract with Alden Just Road Maintenance included repair of manhole covers and no further action was required by the township.   It was agreed Dahlheimer and Engineer Kuhn would continue communications with Alden Just to assure the most effective use of available funds, time, and resources.

Deputy Clerk Meuwissen mentioned an informational meeting had been scheduled for October 30, 2023 by Clerk Raisanen with the potentially affected landowners should the Liberty Road extension proceed.   Notices to affected landowners should go out early October.

Respectfully submitted….


Mark Meuwissen, Deputy Clerk

Approved this ____ day of ________, 2023


Rod Eldevik, Chairman