At the end of the Crosslake City Council meeting Monday, Feb. 8, the council agreed 4-1 to close the meeting to review a workplace complaint.

The closed meeting was not on the agenda. Council member Marcia Seibert-Volz requested it. Council member Dave Schrupp cast the only vote opposed to a closed session.

Last month, the council hired a Duluth attorney as a third party to investigate a “city respectful workplace” complaint.

City attorney Brad Person later said via email that the council agreed in the closed meeting that nothing should be done. He said he told the council there was nothing to review or talk about because it was an active investigation that has not been completed.

Streets

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After discussing proposed street projects for 2021, the council agreed to have a special meeting Thursday, Feb. 11, to further discuss issues, ultimately deciding to delay this year’s street projects for a year.

Phil Martin, with Bolton & Menk engineering firm, will work with the city administrator and public works director to take over these street projects and work on a timetable to use in future years for these types of public works projects with hard dates to follow.

A concern was the timing of public hearings and getting the word out to people for their thoughts on proposed projects, as well as the best timing for favorable bids for projects.

Streets on this year’s schedule included parts of: Wild Wind Ranch Drive, Rushmoor Boulevard and Rushmoor Trail, Harbor Lane, Birch Narrows Road, Whitefish Avenue, Hilltop Drive, Woodland Drive and Cool Haven Lane.

Nevin proposed putting 2021 road projects on hold after he said a lot of information came up at assessment hearings that the council was unaware of.

The council talked about favorable bond rates available now, and the plan to bond for road projects and a fire truck. They also talked about a change in city policy to assess residents for overlay projects, whether the city should assess for road projects at all, and overlay projects versus complete reconstruction.

City Administrator Mike Lyonais encouraged the council to set a road policy and follow it consistently. Problems are created when it changes every year, he said.

Public safety

The council tabled action on a law enforcement contract to provide police service to Mission Township for 2021-2024. Nevin said Crosslake isn’t recouping its costs to service Mission Township and asked that costs be figured out. Seibert-Volz and Nevin agreed they wanted to see those specific costs before approving a new contract.

The new contract would start May 1. Police Chief Erik Lee proposed Crosslake charge $57,886 in 2021, $59,622 in 2022, and $61,113 in 2023.

In January, police reported 179 incidents in Crosslake and 45 in Mission Township.

Crosslake activity included 62 traffic warnings, five traffic citations, two traffic arrests, three property damage accidents, two suspicious activity, two thefts and one each burglary, suspicious vehicle, suspicious person and damage to property. Police had 14 agency assists and 36 emergency medical services calls.

Mission Township activity included 30 traffic warnings, five traffic citations, two agency assists and one each assault, suspicious activity and traffic arrest.

Firefighters had 34 calls in January, which included two ice rescues and 28 medical assists/assist EMS crew.

North Ambulance Crosslake had 80 calls in December and 73 in January.

In other business Feb. 8, the council:

  • Tabled action to pay $7,694 to Hy-Tec Construction for an additional sign for the city hall and police department location at the corner of County State Aid Highway 66 and Daggett Bay Road. Currently a planned sign only faces south; the additional sign would face north.

  • Learned the Crosslake-Fifty Lakes American Legion post and auxiliary donated $20,688 in charitable contributions in 2020.

  • Vacated a part of Oak Street north of Pine Avenue/Lake Trail in the Bowers Point plat as requested by several property owners.

  • Agreed to donate $250 to the Emily Food Shelf and not to grant a donation request to the Crow Wing County Historical Society because the city has never contributed to that group in the past.

  • Agreed to change the personnel commission from four to three people, including the mayor, one council member and the city administrator. No longer included is a nonunion supervisory city employee.

  • Agreed to apply for Telecommuter Forward! Community certification to support telecommuting opportunities for Crosslake.

  • Approved an agreement for Lutheran Social Services to use the Crosslake Community Center for the senior nutrition program.

  • Approved a Kitchigami Regional Library System service contract with Crosslake.

Nancy Vogt may be reached at 218-855-5877 or nancy.vogt@pineandlakes.com. Follow her on Facebook and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/@PEJ_Nancy.