Zumbrota, MN 

Bridging the Past and the Future

March 1, 2007 Council Minutes






REGULAR MEETING, March 1, 2007   6:00 P.M.      TOWN HALL


Pursuant to due call and notice thereof, Mayor Rich Bauer called the Zumbrota City Council to order at 6:00 p.m.  PRESENT:  Mayor Bauer, Councilmembers Willard Eberhart, Doug Borgschatz, Michael Feil, Betty Jo Grothe.  Others present: City Administrator Neil Jensen, City Accountant Kim Simonson, Community Development Director Dan King, Police Chief Gary Selness, City Attorney Matt Rockne, News Reporter Dave Grimsrud, Jim Wedge, Brian Haugen, Brad Hegseth, Brian Buck, Tim Frank, Conway Jacobson, Dale Hinderaker, Doug Beck, and Chuck Sturm, Scot Quenzer and Mrs. Quenzer.


The meeting opened with the Pledge of Allegiance.




Motion Borgschatz, second Grothe to adopt the agenda with the addition of item 8I under New Business “Letter of Intent, Company A”.  Carried 5-0-0.




Grothe asked the minutes be amended to reflect she had abstained from the motion to approve the accounts payable at the February 15, 2007, meeting.  That motion would then have carried 4-0-1 with Grothe abstaining.  Motion Eberhart, second Grothe, to approve the regular meeting minutes of  2-15-07 as amended.  Carried 5-0-0



Motion Feil, second Borgschatz to approve the accounts payable of $92,732.17.  Carried 5‑0‑0


Public Comment: 

No public comment.


Unfinished Business;


New Business;


8-A  Review/Approve Grover Auto Site Proposal


The EDA recommended 3-0-3 in favor of a developer’s agreement and subsequent purchase agreement with Quality Home & Land Development.  Borgschatz asked why there had been three abstentions.  Eberhart explained his reason for abstaining citing he has more questions he would like answered before he could vote yes.  He said he is concerned there be a completion date, he wanted more details on what the outside of the building would look like, the original proposal said nothing about completing garages, would the price of the units stay static and he would also like to see a bond put up for the value of the land so if the development does not take place the City will end up with some sort of financial recourse. 


Borgschatz then asked about the reasons for voting in favor of the proposal.  Mayor Bauer explained his reasons for voting in favor of the project.  He believes the units are very marketable towards seniors and young professionals.  The Council has wanted commercial space on the bottom and housing on top. The property has been out for proposals three times and no one has presented commercial.  Therefore he believes the market has dictated housing for this lot.  He also believes the market will dictate the price of the units.  Quality Home & Land Development will have about 50% of the material costs invested in the shell of the building.  He believes they will be motivated to sell the units.  Eberhart expressed concern that the development would not be for seniors only. 


Bauer then asked EDA members who were present if they would like to comment.  EDA Chair Dale Hinderaker said he liked the density of the project, liked the ownership aspect and thought many of the Council’s concerns could be addressed in a developer’s agreement at which time the developer would address the Council more in-depth of the project.  Chuck Sturm said he had abstained because there was a conflict of interest with possible financing from the Bank of Zumbrota. 


Borgschatz stated he had really wanted some commercial development for the Grover spot and he was concerned there was too much concern about getting this property back on the tax rolls.  He would like to see a timeframe for completion.  He also thanked all the others who had submitted RFPs on the site. 


Mayor Bauer explained the EDA knows there needs to be some contingencies for the project.  They will be asking for a letter of credit as well as considering asking for $30,000 for all the sewer connections up front.


Motion by Gothe, Second Feil to direct city staff to draft a developer’s agreement with Quality Home & Land Development.  Approved 4-1-0 with Borgschatz voting against.   


8-B  Review/Approve Page Building Proposal;


EDA recommended city staff negotiate a purchase agreement with Scot Quenzer.  Borgschatz stated he has concerns about the easement for the storm water which runs under the northwest corner of the property.  City attorney Rockne stated there was now an easement in place.  The property owner would assume the risk but the City would be responsible restoring the property to its current state if there should be a reason to repair the storm sewer.  There was conversation about if Mr. Quenzer made improvements would the City be responsible for restoring it to the improved state or original state. 


Eberhart stated that he would just as soon see the existing building demolished and a new building could be built out of the easement area.  He also was concerned the Quam Laundromat was not dead yet and Quenzer’s proposal included a Laundromat.  EDA Chairperson Hinderaker stated that if Quam were still interested in the Laundromat he would have to bring his proposal back to the EDA.  If the Quenzer proposal were accepted then that land would remain a parking lot. 


Motion Grothe, second Bauer to direct City Staff to enter into a purchase agreement with Scot Quenzer.  Carried 3-2-0 with Eberhart and Feil voting against.


8-C  2006 Final Budget Review and Approval

City Administrator Neil Jensen presented the Council with the final budget results for 2006.  He commended the departments for staying under budget.  He then highlighted areas of the budget.  He thanked City Attorney Rockne for his service to the City but expressed concern that he was not charging enough for his services.  He asked the Council to keep that in mind for the 2008 budget.  Jensen stated the Library was under budget by nearly $60,000 and that should be looked at in the next budget cycle.  His main area of focus was the Sewer Fund.  In 2006 the Sewer Fund was $10,000 short on revenue for the year.  Half of the sewer revenues are currently bonded out.  The sewer rates will have to be looked at carefully in the next budgeting cycle.


Motion Borgschatz, second Eberhart to approve the 2006 Final Budget Review.  Carried 5-0-0.


8-D  3.2 Beer On/Off Sale License Renewal



8-E  Change Order #5 2005 Reconstruction Project

This change is for the wear course of asphalt.  The initial increase had been estimated at $38,000.  There had been a misunderstanding with Yaggy and Colby about when to apply the final course of asphalt.  After talks the increase has been set for $4,400. 


Motion Grothe, second Borgschatz to approve 2005 Reconstruction Project Change Order #5. Carried 5-0-0.


8-F  Proposed Amendment to Ordinance “Off-Street Parking”

Community Development Director Dan King addressed the Council regarding an amendment of the zoning ordinance addressing screening requirements to parking lots when they abut residential areas.  The new amendment would require six foot fencing to screen the commercial parking lot from residential areas.  The fencing could not be chain-link.  This would apply to new construction only.  All other areas would be grandfathered in.  If a commercial property was rebuilt they would also be required to adhere to this ordinance.


Motion Grothe, second Borgschatz to approve the amendment to the City Code Ordinance regarding “Off-Street Parking”.  Carried 5-0-0.


8-G  Approve Tree Service Bid. 

Council received two bids for removal of 14 trees which were diseased and dying.  The bids were from McWaters Tree Service ($8,800) and Heartland Trees ($4,153.50).  City Administrator Jensen recommended the Council approve the low bid from Heartland Trees.


Motion Feil, Second Eberhart to approve the bid from Heartland Trees in the amount of $4,153.50.


8-H  Special Assessment Request



8-I  Letter of Intent “Company A”

A company has expressed interest in building a facility in Zumbrota.  Over the past month, City Administrator Jensen, Community Development Director Dan King and Mayor Bauer have been working on proposals for Company A.  They presented three proposals and Company A chose one site.  This project would bring family wage jobs to the City of Zumbrota.  The property owner is a willing seller and the purchase option agreement is being reviewed by the property owner’s attorney.  Company A is requesting JobZ.  They would like 7.8 acres and confidentiality is a priority.  Mayor Bauer explained that if they don’t receive JobZ they will not come to Zumbrota.  The JobZ zone needs to be moved in order to complete the project.  The City will need to work with Goodhue County and the ZM Schools to draft and adopt resolutions.  Bauer also listed the following things which need to happen.

            1.  Letter of Intent


2.  How much land is needed:  Company A wants 7.8 acres however it would take about 20 acres to level off the site and form an industrial park? 


3. Concept Plan:  Administrator Jensen will have costs at the next meeting.  A concept plan is needed in order to lay out lots.  Additional industrial lots will be needed.  A Sub-Committee needs to be formed to recommend the concept plan and plat and to direct City Engineer WHKS to begin feasibility study.  He also recommended that the Planning and Zoning Commission be represented on the Subcommitee.  Grothe and Bauer were recommended to sit on this Sub-Committee.


Motion Borgschatz, second Feil to have Grothe and Bauer sit on a Sub-Committee to develop preliminary and final plats.  Also WHKS would submit concept plan.  Carried 5-0-0.


4.      A motion needs to be made to move the JobZ Zone.


Motion Borgschatz, second Grothe to direct city staff to draft a resolution to move the JobZ zone to the future industrial park area.  Carried 5-0-0.




5.      The property needs to be annexed into the City.  The property owner will

            speak with the township and then Mayor Bauer will report back to the Council.


Motion Grothe, second Feil to direct the City Attorney to draft an ordinance on annexation by ordinance.  Carried 5-0-0.


6.      A feasibility report needs to be done by the city engineer. 


Motion Borgschatz, second Grothe to direct City Engineer WHKS to prepare a feasibility report on this project.  Carried 5-0-0.


7.      Timeline of project:  Company A wants to break ground as soon as possible

therefore this project needs to be on the fast track.  Administrator Jensen has prepared a timeline for the proposed project.  He asked the Council to review the timeline.  He will make revision on Monday, March 5.


8.      A joint meeting needs to be called with the EDA


Motion Eberhart, second Grothe to call a joint meeting with the EDA and City Council on Thursday, March 15, at 6:10 p.m.  Approved 5-0-0.




City Administrator Neil Jensen;

Reported he is attending meeting with the County Board on March 24.  They will be discussing a joint partnership between the City and the County to provide an access to Highway 60 from the west industrial properties on Highway 52.  The lack of access to Highway 52 recently stalled a potential $80 million industrial project for the City.  It would be in the County’s and City’s best interest to reach a mutually beneficial agreement.  Jensen asked if there were any other Council Members willing to attend.  They will get back to him so he can turn in a count.


Community Development Director Dan King;

Reported he will have the annual report and summary to the Council at the next meeting.


Mayor Bauer;

Reported that he attended the Pine Island Township Board meeting this month and will continue to meet with the other townships to keep communications open. 


Council Member Eberhart;

Expressed concerns that cars were not being towed during snow removal.  He also asked who is responsible for snow removal on sidewalks.  City staff will look further into this matter. 


Meeting adjourned 7:57 p.m.


                                                                                    Neil Jensen City Administrator

City of Zumbrota; 175 West Avenue; Zumbrota, MN 55992