January 3, 2023 City Council Minutes

A regular meeting of the City Council of the City of International Falls, Minnesota was held in the Council Chambers of the Municipal Building on the 3rd day of January 2023 at the hour of 5:30 P.M. proceeding the City Council Organizational Meeting.

MEMBERS PRESENT:  Mayor Droba and Councilors Buller, Holden, Kalar, and Wegner


APPROVED agenda as presented MOTION by Councilor Holden to approve agenda with re-positioning of consideration for the Cine 5 Theater License.  Motion seconded by Councilor Wegner and carried unanimously.
APPROVED minutes of the December 19, 2022 regular City Council meeting MOTION by Councilor Buller to approve minutes of the regular City Council meeting on December 19, 2022. Motion seconded by Councilor Holden and carried unanimously.
ADOPTED Resolution No. 02-2023 approving transfers, payment of claims, and accounts payable MOTION by Councilor Kalar to adopt Resolution No. 02-2023 approving transfers, payment of claims and accounts payable for the first monthly City Council meeting. Motion seconded by Councilor Holden and carried unanimously.


ADVASEC Inc. Cyber Security 1,988.00 74971
Amazon Capital Services Supplies-Pol/Amb/Fire Cloth-Fire/Amb 493.98 74972
Ameritas Life Ins. Corp. Dental Insurance Premiums 1,837.16 74973
Andrew Holler Lawn Cleanup – 801 7th St 156.00 74974
Arrowhead Reg. Fire Fighter Assoc. Annual Membership Dues 75.00 74975
Axon Enterprises, Inc. Taser Cartridges 900.20 74976
BCBS of MN Health Insurance Premiums 4,150.00 74977
BCBS of MN Health Insurance Premiums 2,304.80 74978
Bob Discenza Water Account Deposit Refund 20.00 74979
Bolten & Menk, Inc. Engineering Services 116,896.50 74980
Borderland Humane Society Pound Operation & Annual Contr. 7,250.00 74981
Bound Tree Medical, LLC Ambulance Supplies 1,687.85 74982
Brad Hagen Safety Boot Allowance 160.00 74983
Bremer Cardmember Service Amb/Fire/Police/IT/St/Housing/Bldg 4,144.00 74984
Cargill, Inc. De-Icer Salt – Ice Control Bulk 14,358.87 74985
CherryRoad Media, Inc. Minutes, Meeting Dates, Bids 1,706.26 74986
City of Int’l Falls – Fund 101 Lodging Tax Transfer 285.90 74987
City Water Department City Buildings – Water Usage 2,168.56 74988
Convention & Visitors Bureau Lodging Tax 5,432.05 74989
DSC Communications Radio Maintenance & Pager Batteries 1,836.00 74990
Eckman – International Falls M&R Equipment – Police 69.03 74991
Grand Forks Fire Equipment, LLC Clothing – Ambulance 7,770.00 74992
Guardian Fleet Safety 2022 Ford PIU Unit 2202 25,039.95 74993
Hawkins, Inc. Chemicals 90.00 74994
Innovative Office Solutions, LLC Supplies – Adm/Bldg Official 230.34 74995
IUOE Local 49 Health Insurance Premiums 28,609.00 74996
Justin Mostad Safety Boot Allowance 147.95 74997
K&K Meyers, Inc. Door Opener – Airport 344.00 74998
Kraus-Anderson Const. Co. Engineering Services 22,080.53 74999
Lawson Products, Inc. Supplies – Street/St.Lighting/Safety 1,307.55 75000
Leads Online Automation – Police 2,635.00 75001
LMC Insurance Trust WC – Deductible 500.00 75002
Marco Antivirus / Microsoft Exchange 588.50 75003
Marco Technologies, LLC Contract/Print/Copy 1,367.42 75004
MedicareBlue RX Health Insurance Premiums 1,848.00 75005
Menards – International Falls Sup – St/St.Lit/WtrAdm/Amb, Tools-St 185.88 75006
Meyers Glass Door Rep.–Kerry Park, Boarding 559.30 75007
Mike Holden 2023 Council Expend. Reimbursement 700.00 75008
Minnesota Child Support ID 0014487664, Locator Code 27 50.00 75009
Minnesota Energy Resources Utilities 1,799.19 75010
Minnesota Industries Safety Equipment – Street 7.29 75011
North American Bank Co. Woodbury Inserting System Lease 181.75 75012
Northland Sales & Service M&R Building – Ambulance/Fire 3,571.08 75013
PBBS Equipment Corporation Parts – Sanitary Sewer 499.46 75014
Range Paper Corp. Cleaning Services – Govt. Buildings 81.70 75015
Roche’s Towing Towing – Police 85.00 75016
Ronning’s Clothing Allowance – A. Kastens 43.98 75017
Shannon’s, Inc. Bldg Maintenance – Gar/Water Pl 895.57 75018
Steven M. Shermoen Legal Fees & Filing Cabinets 3,434.00 75019
Stryker Sales Corp. Ambulance Supplies 326.98 75020
Sun Life Financial Life Insurance Premiums 535.49 75021
Tactical & Technical Assessment Simulator Training 800.00 75022
The Nelson Trust Health Insurance Premiums 37,924.50 75023
WEX Bank Gas-Demo/Strm/Fire/St/VNP/Amb/Wtr 6,594.61 75024
Widseth Engineering Services 60,000.00 75025
Widseth Engineering Services 1,046.25 75026
William Tomczak Safety Boot Allowance 159.95 75027
Ziegler, Inc. Parts – Street Department 1,320.48 75028
The following checks were issued under blanket authorization:
AFLAC Supplemental Insurance 206.62 101649
All State – American Heritage Supplemental Insurance 9.64 101650
Bay Ridge Administrators, LLC Supplemental Insurance 364.30 101651
Bremer Bank NA Federal Withholding 40,947.41 101652
I.U.O.E. Central Pension Fund Retirement 2,839.62 101653
Int’l Falls Fire Department Fire Dept. Relief 28.00 101654
Intl Falls Ambulance Service Dues 168.00 101655
Justin Franz, Sec/Treas. C.O.P.S. 110.00 101656
MN Child Support Pmt Center Wage Assignment 622.14 101657
MN Department of Revenue State Withholding 7,888.13 101658
Empower Retirement Deferred Compensation 8,868.00 101659
PERA Retirement 35,608.58 101660
RCB Collections, Inc. Wage Assignment 63.52 101661
Sun Life Financial Supplemental Life Insurance 816.51 101662
The Hartford Voluntary LTD Insurance 739.69 101663
United Way of NE MN Inc. Employee Donation 15.00 101664



APPROVED as presented

MOTION by Councilor Holden to approve the Consent Agenda as presented:

1.      Approve 2023 license renewal, as presented.

2.      Approve/allow necessary expenses for Mayor and Councilors to attend 2023 legislative events that pertain to the city business

3.      Approve/allow necessary expenses for Mayor and Councilors to attend 2023 Elected Leaders Institute: Foundational Program and/or Advanced Program offered by the League of Minnesota Cities

4.      Approve travel and continuing education training expenses for Building Official, Kelly Meyers

·         2023 Annual Institute for Building Officials, Minneapolis, MN – January 23-27, 2023

·         ICC Upper Great Plains Region III Educational Institute, Minneapolis, MN – February 13-17, 2023

·         Attendance at quarterly Arrowhead Chapter Building Official meetings and required State seminars for continuing education credits

5.      Approve travel and continuing education training for Fire Marshal, Jared Baldwin to attend the ICC Upper Great Plains Region III Education Institute, Minneapolis, MN – February 13-15, 2023

6.      Approve IRS mileage reimbursement rate for 2023

7.      Resolution No. 03-2023 Delegating authority to make electronic fund transfers to the Finance Officer and City Administrator for 2023

Motion seconded by Councilor Kalar and carried unanimously.


UPDATE from the Chamber of Commerce regarding the 2023 Icebox Days Celebration

Chamber of Commerce President, Shawn Mason, and Executive Director, Denise Kulig, approached the council to offer the following updates on the 2023 Icebox Days Celebration:

  • Due to recent changes in the Kerry Park Arena event schedule, changes may be made to the 2023 Icebox Days events for this location.
  • In an effort to offer additional, child-friendly events, the Chamber is working with City Administrator, Betty Bergstrom, and the City Public Works Department to explore other City-owned/operated locations that may be used.
  • Fire Chief, Adam Mannausau, confirmed the 2023 Icebox Days Fireworks have been acquired, and the launch location has been selected.
APPROVED 2023 license renewals that include tobacco and/or liquor applications as presented MOTION by Councilor Kalar to approve the following 2023 tobacco and/or liquor license renewals:

  • DG Retail LLC dba Dollar General Store #15619 – Cigarette License

Motion seconded by Councilor Holden and carried unanimously.

APPROVED new 2023 license applications as presented MOTION by Councilor Holden to approve the following 2023 new license applications effective January 1, 2023:

  • Border Boost (new owner maintaining business name) – Restaurant License
  • On The Way Café, LLC (previously known as Sandy’s Place) – Restaurant License

Motion seconded by Councilor Buller and carried unanimously.


Councilor attendance encouraged at the virtual Broadband Kickoff event: “Internet for All: Connecting One Minnesota Workshop”

In response to a recent email from Jacqueline Nagle on behalf of the American Connection Project, Mayor Droba encouraged Councilor attendance to the collaborative National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) & State of Minnesota event: “Internet for All: Connecting One Minnesota Workshop”. This presentation is intended to offer a better understanding of federally driven programs for broadband and digital equity.
APPROVED Cine 5 Theatre Restaurant and Theater Licenses contingent upon compliance and approval of the Fire Marshal’s office MOTION by Councilor Holden to approve Restaurant & Theater Licenses for the Cine 5 Theater contingent upon completion of necessary repairs.  Due to plumbing issues affecting the facility-wide sprinkler system, the Cine 5 Theater has recently been moved to a fire-watch status while occupied.  Mayor Droba proposed the approval of Cine 5’s 2023 Restaurant and Theater license renewals contingent upon compliance and approval of the Fire Marshal’s office.  Motion seconded by Councilor Kalar and carried unanimously.
Reports of the Administrator, Attorney, and Department Heads City Administrator Bergstrom reported that the Koochiching County Board of Commissioners is scheduled to begin advertising for the open District 3 County Commissioner seat on Friday, January 9, 2023. District 3 encompasses the East Ward of International Falls and the West Precinct of Ranier. Filing for this position will open at the County Auditor-Treasurer’s office on Tuesday, January 17, 2023; this is to be followed by an April 11, 2023 election at the International Falls East Ward polling location, the Evangelical Covenant Church.

City Attorney, Chelsea Nelson, announced the upcoming opening of her new office in International Falls. This office will be located at 501 4th St (this location previously operated by former City Attorney, Steve Shermoen).

Reports from the Convention & Visitors Bureau meeting on November 16, 2022, the International Falls Recreation Commission meeting on December 21, 2022, and the International Falls-Koochiching County Airport Commission meeting on December 28, 2022 were made available.

Reports of Mayor and Council Committees Councilor Kalar encouraged community attendance for the January 15th Elk’s Hoop Shoot located in the International Falls High School gymnasium from 1:00 P.M. to 3:00 P.M.

Councilor Buller addressed the issue with flights landing and taking off from the International Falls Airport strip without passengers, stating this issue is based on airline flight schedules, and cannot be adjusted by the City Council, the Airport Commission, or the Airport itself.

Continuing the conversation regarding the airport, Mayor Droba went on to say an additional Airport Commission meeting is scheduled for January 10, 2023 to hopefully bring about a resolution to the question of airport funding.

ADJOURNMENT Mayor Droba reminded the room that City Offices will be closed on Monday, January 16, 2023 in observance of the Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday. As a result of this holiday, he further stated the next regular City Council meeting will take place on Tuesday, January 17, 2023 at 5:30 P.M. in the City Council Chambers.

Mayor Droba adjourned the meeting at 6:46 P.M.

Harley M. Droba, Mayor


Betty Bergstrom, City Administrator

Print Friendly, PDF & Email