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February 11, 2021 Board Meeting Minutes

MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING OF

THE MINNEHAHA CREEK WATERSHED DISTRICT

BOARD OF MANAGERS

 

February 11, 2021

 

CALL TO ORDER

The regular meeting of the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District was called to order by President Sherry White at 7:01 p.m. on February 11, 2021.  President White noted that this meeting was convened electronically through WebEx, pursuant to Minnesota Statutes 13D.021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and her determination that it is not prudent for the Board of Managers, or any committee thereof, to meet in person, and it is not feasible to provide for any member of the Board, or of the public, to meet at the regular meeting location.  For this reason, until this determination is withdrawn by the District’s presiding officer, chief legal counsel or chief administrative officer, the meetings of the Board and its committees will be convened by telephone or other electronic means as the presiding officer determines appropriate.  All such meetings will be noticed and conducted in accordance with §13D.021 and all other applicable terms of the Open Meeting Law.  President White noted that, pursuant to §13D.021, all votes will be by roll call.

President White called the roll to note attendance:

Hejmadi:         Present

Loftus:            Present

Rogness:          Present

Miller:              Present

Olson:              Present

Maxwell:         Present

White:             Present

DISTRICT STAFF AND CONSULTANTS PRESENT

James Wisker, Administrator; Chris Meehan, Consulting Engineer; and Louis Smith, District Counsel.

MATTERS FROM THE FLOOR

None.

APPROVAL OF AGENDA

It was moved by Manager Maxwell, seconded by Manager Miller to approve the Agenda as distributed.  Upon roll call vote, the motion carried 7-0 as follows:

Hejmadi:         Aye

Loftus:            Aye

Rogness:          Aye

Miller:              Absent

Olson:              Aye

Maxwell:         Aye

White:             Aye

CONSENT AGENDA

It was moved by Manager Olson, seconded by Manager Hejmadi, to approve the Consent Agenda consisting of approval of the January 28, 2021 Board minutes.

Upon roll call vote, the motion carried, 7-0 as follows:

Hejmadi:         Aye

Loftus:            Aye

Rogness:          Aye

Miller:              Aye

Olson:              Aye

Maxwell:         Aye                                    

White:             Aye

BOARD, COMMITTEE AND TASK FORCE REPORTS

President’s Report

Summary of Administrator’s Performance Evaluation:    President White noted that on January 28, 2021, the board of managers conducted a performance review of District Administrator James Wisker. The board rated his performance as excellent and elected to give Mr. Wisker a salary increase of 5%, effective January 1, 2021.

President White reported on a good meeting with Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Lunde.  She noted that Joel Carlson has reported a bill introduced at the legislature that would allow county commissioners to serve as watershed district managers. 

Operations and Programs Committee Report:  Manager Loftus reported that the committee met earlier and had a valuable presentation and listening session with the HDR design team to envision priorities and goals for the 325 Blake Road project.  The committee also received a briefing from staff on Phase 1 of the organizational assessment of the Citizens Advisory Committee.  Much more work on this assessment will be reported in the months to come.

Upcoming Meeting and Event Schedule:  President White directed the managers to the meetings listed on the agenda; all of the meetings to be noticed and held via WebEx.  She noted that Manager Olson would be the Board liaison to the Citizens Advisory Committee meeting on February 17.

ACTION ITEMS

Resolution 21-013:  Approve PPC Strategic Discussion Process and Authorize Contact with Smith Partners PLLP

Mr. Wisker reviewed the request for board action, noting prior discussions in committee to frame the goals and scope of this project.  He said that he hoped the project would produce findings to guide successful watershed management. 

It was moved by Manager Miller, seconded by Manager Olson to adopt Resolution 21-013 as follows:

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District Board of Managers hereby approves the process for strategic organizational dialog and authorizes the District Administrator to execute a contract with Smith Partners PLLP to complete Phase 1 work in accordance with the attached scope of services in an amount not to exceed $50,350. 

Upon roll call vote, the motion carried, 7-0 as follows:

Hejmadi:         Aye

Loftus:            Aye

Rogness:          Aye

Miller:              Aye

Olson:              Aye

Maxwell:         Aye                                    

White:             Aye

Resolution 21-014: Recognition of Kurt Rogness’ Service on the MCWD Board

President White read the full resolution recognizing the service of Manager Rogness on the Board of Managers.  Each member of the board took a moment to express their gratitude for Manager Rogness’ invaluable insight and comprehensive vision, his warmth and kindness, and generous spirit to share his professional expertise for public benefit.  It was moved by Manager Miller, seconded by Manager Loftus to adopt Resolution 21-014 as follows:

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District Board of Managers hereby formally acknowledges Kurt Rogness’ contribution to the organization and expresses its deep gratitude and thanks for his service.     

There being no further discussion, upon roll call vote, the motion carried 7-0 as follows:

Hejmadi:         Aye

Loftus:            Aye

Rogness:          Aye

Miller:              Aye

Olson:              Aye

Maxwell:         Aye

White:             Aye

STAFF UPDATES

Administrator’s Report

Mr. Wisker reported that Senator Patricia Torres Ray is seeking a hearing on funding a study on high water issues.  There will be a public hearing on the Hiawatha golf course park master plan on February 17.  The District is continuing its development of remote sensing and machine learning which will improve capacity to monitor and analyze high water conditions.  Mr. Wisker will continue to follow up on these matters as needed.

Adjournment

There being no further business, President White declared the meeting of the Board of Managers adjourned at 7:28 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Eugene Maxwell, Secretary

Minutes Type: 
Board of Managers