Wyoming Council OK’s purchase of 2 police cars

Annual meeting business includes appointments

Alice Pickering
Wyoming Reporter

Two new Ford police pursuit cars will replace two squad cars which are nearing the end of their useful lives. Wyoming City Council approved the purchase at the council meeting Tuesday, Jan. 3.

Police Chief Paul Hoppe made the recommendation and request based on the hard use these vehicles get on patrols. Squad 205 has 107,000 miles and Squad 203 has 92,000 miles.  Currently each of these squad cars has two officers assigned to it and they run 12 hours a day, seven days a week. Each is used 3,500 miles a month.

Hoppe tracks maintenance costs for the cars and says these increase substantially every 20,000 miles. First year costs are about $800, second year between $1,500-$2000; and third year between $2,500 and $3,500. By the fourth year, mileage is about 80,000 and annual maintenance costs between $4,500 and $5,000; by the fifth year maintenance increases to about $5,500.

In an effort to control maintenance costs, the department has moved toward a warranty program with newer vehicles that covers a majority of repairs up to 100,000 miles.  After that the vehicles become too costly to maintain, Hoppe said.

Because of limited production to retool the factory for redesigned cars, Hoppe anticipates longer than usual delivery time. Replacement of Squad 205 is urgent. Squad 203 will be rotated out of service when it reaches 100,000 miles, likely in about two or three months.  Normal delivery on a new vehicle is eight to 12 weeks.

Cost of each vehicle is $25,000 with a three-year/100,000 mile warranty as a cost $2610.  Equipping the car adds $2,500 and with  graphics another $600, for a total per-vehicle cost of $30,800. The police department budgeted $61,600 in 2012 to replace the current squad cars

The cars are 2012 Ford Police Pursuit Vehicles with black/white markings. The existing squads would be sold at auctions with proceeds to be deposited into the city general fund.

By a vote of 5-0, council approved the purchase of the two squad cars on state bid. Money is to come from the police capital fund.

US-61 Update

Council last week also authorized staff to send a letter accepting cooperative agreement funding for Highway 61 improvements to Greg Kern, cooperative agreement engineer for MnDOT.

In it the city accepts funding to help with improvements to US-61.  Right-of-way acquisition, utility relocation, and engineering costs are to be paid for by the city.  The city’s state aid funds will help pay for these costs.

The project must be bid by June 2013, but the city can move the project up and let bids by June 2012. Council approval was unanimous.

Appointments for 2012

The city’s annual meeting, organizing officers and liaison assignments were agenda topics for the council last week. A requirement of state law is the designation of official depositories — the institutions where the city does its banking.

For 2012 these are the First State Bank of Wyoming, Central Bank of Forest Lake, Morgan Stanley/Smith Barney Inc. and Citigroup; and RBC Wealth Management/Dain Rauscher. The vote was 5-0 to approve these institutions.

By unanimous vote, the Forest Lake Times was chosen as the official newspaper.

Other business included council liaison appointments to commissions. The council chose Council member Roger Elmore as acting mayor.  Elmore’s other appointments are to the Wyoming Area Business Association, planning commission and park board.

Mayor Eric Peterson has liaison appointments to the Wyoming EDA, Fire Relief Associations, Forest Lake Area Chamber of Commerce and alternate to the Chisago Lakes Joint Sewer Commission.

Council member Linda Yeager continues as library society liaison. She is also liaison to public works/park departments, EDA, Rush Line representative, and Chamber of Commerce government affairs committee.

Council member Joe Zerwas will continue his service as a member of the CLJSC and as public safety liaison.

Council member Steve Zerwas will serve as a CLJSC commission member.

Other Fire Relief Association members are Fire Chief Dennis Berry and City Administrator Craig Mattson. Police Chief Paul Hoppe serves as the emergency services officer. All appointments were approved unanimously.

Appointments to the Wyoming Planning Commission for 2012 are Ken Meyers, with Mark Lobermeier serving as an alternate. Lobermeier is also the city representative to the Comfort Lake Watershed District. The appointments were by a vote of 5-0.

The complete list of planning commission appointments for 2012 includes Judy Coughlin, Meyers, Frank Storm, Michael Thomas and Sean Wagner.

Dan Kitzinger was appointed to the EDA, to fill an unexpired term of Shelly Elmore.

Park board members for 2012 are Jeff Allen, Chair Bob Beynon, Tammy Liljedahl, Tim Patterson and Rita Pietruszewski.

The Wyoming Volunteer Fire Department officers are Berry, chief; Daniel Dahlager, deputy chief; and John Hastings, asst. chief.  Captains in the department are Matthew Haslach, J.J. Hastings, Joseph Kuskey and Phil Niemczyk. Michael Jensen is engineer. Cheryl Jensen is the training officer.

Firefighters are Jay Achenbach, Scotty Blascyk, Karen Brown, Mark Darwin, Jeremy Hastings, Matt Joesting, Traci Johnson, Jeff Mueller, Dillon Orth, Michael Ostlund, Matthew Schiefelbein, Jason Van Tassel and Scotty Van Wagner.

Probationary members are William Hutchins, Jesse Milligan, Kathleen Nyquist, and Alexander Palmquist. Five volunteers are on leave. These are David Flatten, Eric Lamwers, Jason May, Clayton Olson and Joseph Ventimiglia.

The city fee schedule for 2012 was approved unanimously. There have been no major changes from 2011.

Fees which have impact on the greatest number of residents are those related to utilities. The others are for businesses, multiple-housing units, construction, excavation, remodeling, and water and sewer connect charges for businesses and residences.

The quarterly water rate for residents is $32.96 for from 0-15,000 gallons (minimum fee); with an additional $2.12 for each 1000 gallons above 15,000.

Sewer fees are also quarterly rates. The minimum charge is $70 for from 0-15,000 gallons. For every 1000 gallons above 15,000 the fee is $3.53.

The penalty for violation of the odd-even lawn watering ordinance is a warning for the first violation. Fines for the second, third, and fourth violations are $50, $100, and $200, respectively. The fifth violation results in water disconnect. The cost of a sign to indicate alternative water source for lawn sprinkling (existing well) is $15.

Annual dog license fee is $15, with a replacement charge for a lost tag of $1.

CLFLWD Update

Comfort Lake/Forest Lake Watershed District has a service agreement with the Washington Conservation District the includes monitoring water quality on Heims Lake, the Forest Lake outlet, Sunrise River at the county line, and the inlets to Comfort Lake and Little Comfort Lake.

The CLFLWD has received grant funding from the MPCA to retrofit several existing storm water discharge points.

CLFLWD plans to apply for 2012 Municipal/Urban Stormwater Remediation grants to for projects in the district. The grants, up to $50,000 per project require 50 percent matching funds. Two 2012 Clean Water Fund Grants were awarded to CLFLWD, relating to Comfort Lake and its watershed.  One, in the amount of $178,000 is to minimize runoff/pollutants from commercial areas upstream of the lake. The second is to help with restoration of drained wetlands.

By a 5-0 vote, council approved a permit for the East Central Minnesota Chapter Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation to conduct a raffle at Stars and Strikes. Criteria for the exempt permit are five or fewer days of gambling and awards of less than $50,000.  The benefit raffle is scheduled Saturday, April 14.

Other Business

In other business, the council:

•Unanimously approved the hiring of John Peka as part-time rink attendant. Funding for the position, in the amount of $7,500 is in the public works budget.

•Authorized payment of bills, payroll and journal entries for Dec. 21, 2011 through January 3, 2012.

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