February 22, 2018 Board Minutes

MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING OF

THE MINNEHAHA CREEK WATERSHED DISTRICT

BOARD OF MANAGERS

 

February 22, 2018

 

CALL TO ORDER

 

The regular meeting of the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District Board of Managers was called to order by President Sherry White at 7:11 p.m. at the District office, 15320 Minnetonka Boulevard, Minnetonka, Minnesota.

 

 

MANAGERS PRESENT

 

Sherry White, Richard Miller, Brian Shekleton, Kurt Rogness, Jessica Loftus, William Olson.

 

MANAGERS ABSENT 

 

Bill Becker.

 

DISTRICT STAFF AND CONSULTANTS PRESENT

 

Lars Erdahl, Administrator; James Wisker, Planning and Projects Director; Katherine Sylvia, Permitting Program Lead; Elizabeth Showalter, Permitting Technician; Darren Lochner, Education Program Manager; Heidi Quinn, Permitting Technician; Anna Brown, Planner-Project Manager; Laura Domyancich, Project and Land Technician; Chris Meehan, District Consulting Engineer; and Louis Smith, District Counsel. 

 

MATTERS FROM THE FLOOR

 

None.

 

APPROVAL OF AGENDA

 

Manager Shekleton requested that Item 8.1 be amended to include a report on the Citizens Advisory Committee meeting. It was moved by Manager Shekleton, seconded by Manager Rogness to approve the Agenda with this change.  Upon vote, the motion carried, 6-0. 

 

CONSENT AGNEDA

 

It was moved by Manager Rogness, seconded by Manager Olson, to approve the Consent Agenda, consisting of the following items: approval of the February 8, 2018 Board minutes; and approval of the check register of the general checking account, checks numbered 38836 to 38888 for a total of $180,888.45,  payroll direct deposits of $143,378.24 and approve electronic fund withdrawals totaling $32,404.79 for total expenses of $356,6712.48, and surety account check registers, as well as acceptance of the 325 Blake Road checking account; and approval of Resolution 18-0013: MAWD 2018 Annual Dues:  

 

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District Board of Managers hereby approves payment of $7,500 for MAWD 2018 annual dues, payable to the Minnesota Association of Watershed Districts.

 

Upon vote, the motion carried, 6-0. 

 

REGULAR AGENDA

 

Board, Committee, and Task Force Reports

 

President’s Report

 

President White reported on the following items:

 

  • an upcoming Executive Committee will be scheduled to review the 2017 Audit;

 

  • A Joint Working Group to review the responses to the request for qualifications for 325 Blake Road Master Development will be meeting soon;

 

  • President White noted that this is Mr. Erdahl’s last meeting as District Administrator. She thanked him for his service to the District and looked for ward to his continuing service to the District as a Citizen Ambassador.

 

Policy and Planning Committee Report:

 

Manager Miller reported that the Committee met earlier in the evening to receive an update on 325 Blake Road and hear a presentation from the NTH Consultants about their role in advising the District in the process; a program update on the Six Mile Creek Subwatershed work for carp management; and an update on an feasibility study to address flooding in the area of Lake Harriett in southwest Minneapolis.

 

Citizens Advisory Committee

 

Manager Shekleton reported that he and Manager Olson attended the meeting. Mr. Wisker presented a overview of the Strategic Planning for the District and roles in which the CAC could assist. Bill Bushnell was elected Chair of the Citizen Advisor Committee.

 

Permits Requiring a Variance or Discussion

 

 

Permit 17-561: South View Middle School

 

Ms. Elizabeth Schowalter appeared before the Board of Managers to review the request for board action.  She reviewed the configuration of parcels and phasing of the project and noted that it was reviewed in aggregate as a common scheme of development.  She reviewed the erosion control plan and stormwater management plan for the site.  She noted that a resident had expressed concerns with flooding in the area and requested this hearing on the permit application.  The District staff and engineer evaluated downstream impacts, and determined that the proposed project will maintain or reduce runoff rates and volumes.  President White invited any public comments on the permit application, and there were none.  Following discussion, it was moved by Manager Miller, seconded by Manager Rogness to approve the permit with the conditions recommended by staff.  Upon vote, the motion carried, 6-0.

 

Permit 17-512: Edina Flats

 

Ms. Schowalter reviewed the permit application and noted that it was set for hearing before the Board of Managers at the request of a resident who was concerned about the proposed infiltration mobilizing contaminants from a previous vehicle fueling station at the site.  She noted the engineer found, after a review of soil testing data, that there is no reason to recommend that the District disallow infiltration at the site.  Ms. Schowalter also noted that the site is within the Nine Mile Creek Watershed District hydrology, but legally located within the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District.  President White invited any public comments on the permit application and there were none.  It was moved by Manager Rogness, seconded by Manager Miller, to approve the permit with the conditions recommended by staff.    Manager Shekleton asked whether the Nine Mile Creek rules provided similar standards for reviewing this project.  Mr. Smith noted that the substantive stormwater management standards for the two watershed districts are generally similar, and that both districts follow a similar approach to addressing potential contamination concerns regarding infiltration.  There being no further discussion, upon vote, the motion carried, 6-0.

 

Action Items

 

Resolution 18-014: Authorization to Execute Grant Agreement for the Minnehaha Greenway – 325 Blake Road Stormwater Management Project

 

Mr. Michael Hayman appeared before the Board of Managers and reviewed the request for board action.  It was moved by Manager Shekleton, seconded by Manager Miller, to adopt Resolution 18-014 as follows:

 

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the MCWD Board of Managers hereby approves the Grant Agreement between the State of Minnesota, acting through its Board of Water and Soil Resources for appropriated Clean Water Funds in the amount of $370,000 for work related to the Minnehaha Greenway – 325 Blake Road Stormwater Management Project, and authorizes the District Administrator to execute the Grant Agreement. 

 

Upon vote, the motion carried, 6-0.

 

Resolution 18-016: National American Planning Association Conference Attendance

 

Ms. Anna Brown appeared before the Board of Managers and reviewed the request for board action.  She noted that the total estimated cost for three staff members to attend the conference would be approximately $7,500, and that this expense would exceed the training budget and so board approval is requested.  She noted that the conference attendance would advance the District’s commitment to Balanced Urban Ecology.  It was moved by Manager Miller, seconded by Manager Olson, to approve Resolution 18-016 as follows:

 

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District  Board of Managers authorize three (3) staff to attend the 2018 National American Planning Association conference for a cost not to exceed $7,500 for registration, travel, and accommodations.

 

Manager Shekleton expressed his support for this action.  Manager Loftus stated that she was concerned that the expense was outside of the budget and that the information was provided late, so she would abstain.  Upon vote, the motion carried, 5-0-1, with Manager Loftus abstaining.

 

Resolution 18-017: Approval of Employment Agreement Between MCWD and Mr. Wisker

 

Mr. Smith reviewed the Board process to develop the proposed agreement, and stated that he would be pleased to answer any questions.  There being no questions, it was moved by Manager Miller, seconded by Manager Shekleton, to approve Resolution 18-017 to approve the Employment Agreement.  Upon vote, the motion carried, 6-0.

 

Board Discussion Items

 

Big Island Nature Park Easement Engagement Framework

 

Ms. Laura Domyancich appeared before the Board of Managers and reviewed recent issues under discussion with the City of Orono concerning proposed improvements at Big Island.  She reviewed the issues of concern as it relates to the District’s conservation easement, and noted the framework for discussion those issues with the City as its planning process continues.  The managers thanked Ms. Domyancich for her presentation and ongoing work. 

 

Staff Updates

 

 

Administrator’s Report

 

Mr. Erdahl reported on the following items:

 

  • Ms. Domyancich recently appeared before the Medina City Council as it reviewed the plat for the Marx  property which includes the District’s conservation easement;
  • A draft of the 2017 audit has been reviewed by staff in preparation for an upcoming Executive Committee review, and there are no surprises or concerns; and
  • The District recently received correspondence about the Governor’s 25 by 25 water agenda, and plans for the upcoming MAWD legislative meetings on March 7-8.

 

Mr. Erdahl also noted that his first meeting with the Board of Managers had been almost exactly three years ago.  He reviewed the important work of the District accomplished over the past three years through the Board’s leadership and a talented staff.  He noted that there had been a very smooth leadership transition, and that the District would be in good hands.  He thanked the Board and staff for the past three years, and wished everyone well.  President White thanked Mr. Erdahl for his service and wished him well. 

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

There being no further business, the meeting of the Board of Managers was adjourned at        8:08 p.m.

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

Kurt Rogness, Secretary

Minutes Type: 
Board of Managers