City of Hampton

5265 238th Street East • P.O. BOX 128 • Hampton, MN 55031 • United States of America • 651.437.8846

Hampton City Council Meetings Happen Every Second Tuesday of the Month.


Wednesday, February 9, 2022

Hampton City Council Special Meeting and Regular Meeting Minutes for January 11, 2022

The Hampton City Council met on Tuesday, January 11, 2022 at the Hampton City Hall for a special meeting and the regular scheduled meeting. Present were Mayor John Knetter; Council Members Cindy Flodeen, David Luhring, Anthony Verch and Nick Russell. Also present was Brad Fisher with Bolton and Menk; Chris Meyer, City Treasurer; and Tim Quast.

Special Meeting Called to Order – The purpose of the special meeting was to discuss Resolution #2022-01 – Setting salaries, fees, licenses and permits, charges for services, schedules, appointments and annual designations. Mayor Knetter called the special meeting to order at 6:34 pm.

Mayor Knetter began the discussion by asking Councilor Russell if he would like to take on the role of Hockey Rink Manager, and about being paid for his work on the hockey rink. Russell stated that he doesn’t need any compensation, and that any money he would be paid for his work he would rather have invested into the hockey rink. He also mentioned that Tim Quast, who is helping him with the hockey rink maintenance, would be coming to the meeting to address Council about needs for the rink. Discussion ensued about current maintenance issues that need attention. Councilor Luhring asked Russell if he would accept compensation for the work. He pointed out that, if Russell wasn’t doing the work gratis, then the City would hire someone else to do the work. Luhring told Russell that he feels the Hockey Rink Manager should receive compensation for the work, but if Russell wants the funds to be invested back into the rink, he can donate them back to the City for that purpose. Russell stated that he is fine with doing that.

Knetter stated that election judge hourly rates had not been changed for several years and asked Councilors for their opinion about a rate. A rate of $17.50 per hour was decided upon. He also mentioned that the City will be hiring someone to handle the election duties previously handled by the City Clerk.

Luhring commented that he felt the fee for copies is low, considering the high cost of copy machine toner, and stated that he would like a $0.10 increase for that fee.

Councilor Verch commented that, when comparing hourly wages and what the increase for election judges will be, he feels the Cleaning Staff position should have a similar type of increase because she does a good job and it would help with employee retention. He suggested an increase from $15.91 per hour to $17.00 per hour.

For hourly rates of other employees, Knetter suggested a 4% increase for the City Clerk and Treasurer and a 3% increase for all other employees.

Knetter asked Brad Fisher of Bolton and Menk if the City’s sewer access fee of $1,850 is in line with that of other cities. Fisher stated that it is but that it is on the low end. Knetter would like that fee to increase $150 to $2,000.

Discussion regarding which date to move the November Council to because the second Tuesday in November is election day. Councilors agreed to change the November meeting date from the 8th to the 15th.

Knetter asked if anyone had any other suggestions for changes to the fee schedule. Chris Meyer, City Treasurer, mentioned that the City may want to look at its water/sewer quarterly fees for next year. Councilor Luhring commented that it was discussed when fees were last increased that the City should increase fees regularly to keep up with operating cost increases.

Councilors reviewed the 2022 Appointments and Designations. Councilor Russell stated that he would be willing to help out with the parks. Councilor Verch asked Russell if he wanted to take on that designation being he was already taking care of the hockey rink. Verch stated that he then would assume the designation for Water Meter Maintenance. Russell agreed to that.

Adjournment – Motion by Verch seconded by Luhring to close the special meeting. All voted in favor. None opposed. Motion passed 5:0. The special meeting closed at 6:57 p.m.

Regular Meeting called to Order - Mayor Knetter called the Regular Scheduled Meeting to order at 6:58 p.m. Present were Mayor John Knetter; Council Members Cindy Flodeen, David Luhring, Anthony Verch, and Nick Russell.

Disclosure of Interest – Mayor Knetter stated that he works for the City’s Water/Sewer Department. 

Approval of December 14, 2021 Regular Scheduled Meeting Minutes – Motion by Luhring seconded by Verch to approve the December 14, 2021 Regular Scheduled Meeting Minutes. All voted in favor. None opposed. Motion passed 5:0.

Approval of Disbursements – Motion by Luhring seconded by Verch to approve the January disbursements. All voted in favor. None opposed. Motion passed 5:0.

Public Comment – Mayor Knetter asked Tim Quast, who was in attendance, if he would like to address Council now, or if he would like to wait until the Parks Report is done. Quast chose to speak now. He stated to Council that he has been taking care of the ice rink this winter with Councilor Russell. He is wondering if Councilors plan to make improvements to the ice rink, as he has ideas on what is needed to improve the facility. He asked if funds are available for making improvements. Knetter thanked Quast for his work at the ice rink and told him that funds are available in the Parks budget for improvements. Quast said that one of the ideas he has is to put some sort of mat down and/or sandbagging around the rink to prevent water from escaping when they are filling the rink.

Quast also suggested that the City use a tractor with a snowblower attachment for snow removal. He said that he has a tractor and could get a snowblower attachment and donate the use of that to the City. He told Council that current snow removal equipment can cause damage to the ice. Russell commented that, after the last snowfall, the skid loader caused quite a bit of damage to the ice. Councilor Verch mentioned that, even in the summer the rink surface is in bad shape. He thought the City might want to mill it down and possibly put a white silicone coating on the surface to improve ice conditions. He asked that Quast work with Russell regarding potential rink improvements.

Petitions, Requests, and Communications – None Ordinances and Resolutions:

Resolution 2022-01 – Setting salaries, fees, licenses and permits, charges for services, schedules, appointments and annual designations – Mayor Knetter stated that this resolution confirms the recommendations made by Council during the special meeting. Motion by Verch seconded by Russell to approve Resolution 2022-01. All voted in favor. None opposed. Motion passed 5:0.

Resolution 2022-02 – Regarding the Administration of the Wetland Act of 1991 – Discussion among Councilors that they remembered that this came up before, and that it was pretty standard, but they couldn’t recall why they opposed the resolution. Mayor Knetter asked Brad Fisher to review the resolution and give his opinion regarding passing it. Fisher stated that the wording in the resolution was pretty standard. He said that, by approving the resolution the City would give up some control regarding wetland issues, but at the same time the City would have to have a professional to handle administrative issues. He stated that he and other employees of Bolton and Menk are generally on the application side of wetland issues, not administration. Discussion ensued regarding the loss of control on wetland issues, but Knetter feels that the County would work with the City on any wetland issues that come up in the future. Motion by Verch seconded by Flodeen to approve Resolution 2022-02. All voted in favor. None opposed. Motion passed 5:0.

Reports of Officers, Boards, and Committees:

Engineer Report – Brad Fisher with Bolton and Menk had one update for Council. Another meeting has been scheduled with MNDOT regarding the Hwy 52 reconstruction project. The purpose of the meeting is to follow up with MNDOT regarding the status of their design as a whole, but also as it specifically relates to the City and the ballfield drainage issues. Fisher, Cory Bienfang, and a couple of other individuals from Bolton & Menk have done a high-level analysis of the drainage issues to determine possible options of what could be done to correct the problem. So, the plan is to meet with MNDOT officials to see if the design they have planned will correct the drainage issues. If not, Bolton and Menk will have options to present to MNDOT at the meeting.

Water / Sewer Report – Mayor Knetter reminded Council that the PanelView control replacement project is on hold until Marlin Reinardy, Water/Sewer Superintendent, returns from Arizona.

Park Report – Councilor Verch reported that he has the new hockey nets assembled and still has work to do on one more.

Street Report – Councilor Luhring reported that plowing is still being done well and professionally, and that he recently spoke with Roger Otto, giving him more discretion on the decision of when to plow the streets after a snowfall, as currently Mr. Otto calls Luhring for that decision. Luhring told Otto that he would give him that leeway now, but they would revisit the issue if Luhring feels that changes need to be made regarding the timing and frequency of plowing.

Old Business – City Attorney Services – Councilors reviewed Korine Land’s November 28th email at last month’s meeting which stated that LeVander, Gillen & Miller would no longer provide prosecution services as of December 172021. At that meeting it was discussed that the City would need to find a new law firm to handle its criminal cases, but it was also discussed that the City may want to have all of its legal services handled by one firm. Mayor Knetter stated that, after further consideration, having one firm handle all of the City’s legal work wouldn’t be an option at this time because of the pending litigation with Northfield WiFi. So, the decision tonight would be to choose a firm to handle the City’s criminal cases only. Knetter asked if anyone was familiar with any of the firms who provided proposals for review. Verch stated that he is familiar with Dougherty, Molenda, Solfest, Hills & Bauer, and that they are a great firm. Discussion ensued regarding fees charged by each firm. Russell mentioned that he also heard good things about Dougherty Molenda. Knetter mentioned that their fees are in line with the other firms. He asked for a motion on the matter. Motion by Verch seconded by Luhring to select Dougherty, Molenda, Solfest, Hills & Bauer to handle the city’s criminal prosecution services. All voted in favor. None opposed. Motion passed 5:0.

New Business:

Planning Commission Appointments – Laura Johnson and Nick Russell’s terms ended in 2021. Both submitted Interest Forms to serve an additional term. Motion by Luhring seconded by Verch to appoint Laura Johnson and Nick Russell to the Planning Commission. All voted in favor. None opposed. Motion passed 5:0.

Designate ARP Local Fiscal Recovery Funds to be used to purchase a lift station back-up generator. Mayor Knetter mentioned that this was discussed after the CUP was approved for the county maintenance facility. He stated that a City resident who lives near the lift station recommended the purchase of another generator. Motion by Russell seconded by Verch that ARP Local Fiscal Recovery Funds be designated for the purchase of a lift station back-up generator. All voted in favor. None opposed. Motion passed 5:0.

Adjournment - Motion by Verch seconded by Flodeen to adjourn the meeting. Motion passed 5:0. The meeting adjourned at 7:25 p.m.

Respectfully submitted, Judy O’Brien