Crane Lake Township

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3/12/13 Annual Meeting Minutes



March 12, 2013



The March 12, 2013 Annual Meeting was called to order by Clerk Jo Ann Pohlman at 7:35PM, at the Crane Lake Chapel Fellowship Hall with the Pledge of Allegiance recited by those in attendance including:  Clerk Jo Ann Pohlman and 6 members of the community.


Clerk Jo Ann explained the purpose of the Annual Meeting and reminded everyone that it is a public meeting, anyone may attend, but only eligible voters of the Town may act at the meeting.  Voting was to be done by voice.


Clerk Jo Ann asked for nominations for a Moderator.  Butch Eggen nominated Ruth L. Carlson, with a second by Jim Janssen.  Jo Ann asked for any other nominations three times.  There being no other nominations, the nominations were closed.  All voted in favor with Ruth L. Carlson being nominated to be the Moderator.


Moderator Ruth read the Agenda.


Ruth asked for any additions to the Agenda; there were none.  A motion was made by Jim Janssen, supported by Sandy Bodkin, to approve the agenda as presented.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.




Minutes Approval – All attendees of the Annual Meeting received a copy of the minutes for approval. Ruth asked if there were any additions or corrections to the minutes.  There were none. A motion was made by Jerry Pohlman, supported by Sue Adams, to approve the minutes of the 3/13/12 Annual Meeting and the 2/12/13 Board of Audit Meeting.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.


Treasurer’s Report – Clerk Jo Ann read the following Treasurer’s Report for fiscal year 2012:


Opening Balance            $   123,379.35

Receipts                           +170,786.34

Disbursements                   -152,247.40

Ending Balance             $    141,918.29


A motion was made by Sandy Bodkin, supported by Butch Eggen, to approve the Treasurer’s Report as read.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.


Moderator Ruth asked if there was any other Old Business from the floor.  There was none.




2013 Election Day Times & Location – Ruth asked for a motion on 2013 Election Day times and location. A motion was made by Sue Adams, supported by Jerry Pohlman, that the polls would be open from 10AM – 8PM for all elections at the Fellowship Hall.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.

2014 Annual Meeting Date, Time, & Location – A motion was made by Jim Janssen, supported by Sandy Bodkin, to set the 2014 Annual Meeting date and time for March 11, 2014 at 7:30PM at the Fellowship Hall.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.


CLVTB Annual Summary Report: Crane Lake Visitor & Tourism Bureau Chairman Butch Eggen reported that the mission statement of the CLVTB is to generate economic growth through tourism in the CraneLake area.

  • There is a 9 member volunteer board of directors and the CLVTB is a private non-profit MN Corporation.
  • Annual budget is approximately $80,000.00.
  • About 80% of the revenue is generated through the CL Town Ordinance calling for a 3% lodging tax. A 5% administrative fee of the lodging tax is retained by the Town.  This money, about $3,000 per year, is dedicated to the Town’s fireworks.  The remainder comes from donations and grants.
  • There are 16 businesses in the taxing area, 4 businesses outside the area and 20 associate businesses on the membership roles.


Town of CraneLakeAnnual Meeting Minutes 3/12/2013 – Page 2



CLVTB Annual Summary Report:  (Cont.)

  • The CLVTB hosts the website and prints an area brochure.  Advertising is purchased in tourism interest publications, there is a billboard at Orr and the Voyageur Statue is maintained by the Bureau.  The CLVTB participates in regional and state programs; such as, the MN Arrowhead Assoc., DestinationsVoyageursNational Park and Explore Minnesota Tourism.
  • The website is the primary lead generator with about 600 M page views annually.  Approximately 5,000 brochures are mailed and about 5,000 emails are forwarded to members.
  • In 2012 the Bureau’s presence was expanded in social media via Facebook, Twitter and You Tube.  Midwest Captions, who hosts the website, worked with Dee to set this up.  A grant from the IRRRB helped to develop this project.  Dee does an excellent job of keeping these media fresh.
  • On the up side, the Bureau has seen approximately 2 to 3% increase in lodging tax receipts in the last year. The Bureau continues to explore marketing opportunities and new venues for the members.
  • The strategic plan was reviewed and renewed in October of 2011 and continues to be used to guide the advertising and marketing program.  Contact the Bureau to view the strategic plan.
  • Stay tuned and visit CraneLake!


CLWSD Annual Summary Report:  Clerk Jo Ann read the Crane Lake Water & Sanitary District Chairman Rob Scott’s report.

  • Our 2012 annual revenues were $257,000.00 (operating, special assessment, and tax levy funds) and total expenses were $284,512.00 (operating, administrative, debt service, and depreciation). For 2013 we increased our rates by 3% and reduced the tax levy by approximately 10% to $80,000.00. If you do not factor in the depreciation expense, we are operating at a positive cash flow of approximately $15,000.00
  • The ongoing case between CLWSD vs. RLK continues. On February 1, 2013 we filed demand for arbitration with the American Arbitration Association. A conference call this week will finalize the arbitration date and location, arbitrator, and afford last minute mediation from RLK.
  • We have closed out the CSAH-24 expansion project and the new collection system is operating normally.
  • We have entered into a cooperative agreement with the DNR to ensure continuity of revenue with the sale of Water’s Edge to the DNR. The amount is for $6,850.00 and renewable annually in December. The DNR has agreed to renew the contract for at least three more years.
  • The CLWSD looked into the potential advantages to consolidate the CLWSD board within the Township. Our legal advisors, financial advisor, and our lobbyist were contacted for their inputs. The board deliberated on the information provided and moved that no change should be made at this time.
  • We continue to work the initial planning and funding requests for the Handberg Road expansion project. We are waiting for Federal funding allocation to receive $30,000.00 in Search Grant funds to complete the Preliminary Engineering Report that is ongoing at S.E.H. The construction and engineering support funding requests are on multiple fronts with the primary focus at the state level. I have made two trips to St Paul working the requests and last week participated in testimony to the Senate Environment, Economic Development and Agriculture committee on behalf of two pending legislative requests for funding for the Handberg Road expansion and restroom facilities at the DNR landing. Similar testimony will be given at the House committee in 3-4 weeks. The funding requests are part of the State bonding bill and Legacy Water Recreation account.
  • The CLWSD treatment plant processed over 2 million gallons of sewer and has met all standards throughout the summer and fall. This winter we identified some unknown substance that is causing the amount of suspended solids to exceed the MPCA standards. Our licensed operator has been working with the MPCA to identify what the particles are. There is no issue with the treated discharge, but to date the particles have not been identified. This month there will be a meeting in St Paul with other agencies and the MPCA to attempt to determine what the issue is.
  • Next summer we will be conducting an end-to-end survey of the entire collection system including all individual grinder stations. The purpose of the survey is to determine the status of the system and to evaluate what upgrades and changes need to be made to ensure that system integrity is being maintained. If work is needed, it will be prioritized and completed based on funding availability.


IJC/Water Board Report:  Clerk Jo Ann read International Joint Commission/Water Board Representative Rob Scott’s report.

  • The water levels within the Namakan basin were maintained within the International Joint Commission (IJC) 2000 rule curve for the 2012 season. We are seeing the normal draw down in water level bottoming out this month with an increase to start April 1st. The total transition this year was approximately 5 feet vs. the maximum drawn down for the basin of 7.5 feet. There was one excursion on the CraneLake graph during the 3rd week of June due to high inflows from the VermilionRiver and the natural outflow restriction in the Narrows.


Town of CraneLakeAnnual Meeting Minutes 3/12/2013 – Page 3



IJC/Water Board Report: (Cont.)

  • I was unable to attend the International Rainy Lake Board of Control meeting in August of last year. However there are no indications that there will be any changes to the existing rule curve. The Lake of the Woods and Rainy River Watershed report has been published. The key point for the Namakan basin is that there is a recommendation to support existing guidelines with a consolidation of the two water boards for an increase in emphasis on both water quality issues along with water quantity concerns for the total watershed from CraneLake to Lake of the Woods.
  • With the current water levels slightly above mid-curve prior to the April 1st rising of the water level, we should see good water level conditions at ice out. The snow cover and ice thickness should also assist in maintaining upper levels of water within the curve for navigation and fishing within the Namakan basin for April and May.


CLVSC Annual Summary Report:  There was no report from the Crane Lake Voyageur Snowmobile Club.


CL Chapel Annual Summary Report:  Clerk Jo Ann read Board of Trustee Chairman Shirley Sanborn’s report.

  • We are into our second year since our new pastor has arrived.  He has been a good addition to the Chapel and the community.  He also has a spouse that is a good addition to the mission.
  • Attendance has improved both in the summer and the winter; which, of course, has improved the collections.  We have had several special events.  In December of 2011 we had a pot luck at Ruth Carlson’s home with special guest, Jack Pearson. It drew a good crowd.  This year, because of the dates he was available, we had it at the church.  We didn’t get such a crowd.  So we keep trying.
  • We also did our regular fund raisers.  We made a couple batches of pasties again. (We still have some).  Our bazaar was successful.  And the book and bake sale on Memorial Day weekend drew a good crowd.  We thank the residents of CraneLake who support these events.
  • The group of gals that organize and work on the Ladies of the LakeLuncheon do a wonderful job and many come from around the area to attend.
  • The next event in the churches of the world is Easter.  The Crane Lake Chapel will have a Good Friday service at 7:00 P.M. on March 29th to which we encourage all of you to attend.  Then on Easter Sunday we have our Son Rise service at 7:00 A.M.  We will follow that with our famous Easter Breakfast.  Ye all come.
  • Thank you all for your support.  We plan to continue to be a Christian witness in the community.  We never know when “we” will need the “service”.  You won’t miss it until it’s gone, which we hope will never happen.


Cook-Orr Healthcare District Annual Report:  Clerk Jo Ann read Town Representative Shirley Sanborn’s report.

  • As your elected representative to the Cook/Orr Hospital Board of trustees I am very sorry not to be there this evening for the annual meeting.  Some of the local Boy Scouts are receiving awards and I was asked to go along.
  • This has been an exciting year at the CookHospital.  We are coming to the end of an extensive building and remodeling project.  If any of you have had the unlucky chance to visit the Emergency Room there, you will notice a drastic change on your next visit.  Previously, it had very little privacy and now there are several private rooms for treatment.  Also, technology has changed since the last remodel and all that was updated.  The whole area has been given a very warm and friendly feeling.  The space the ER used to occupy is now being remodeled into areas where other procedures are provided by visiting staff.  The lab and pharmacy have also been remodeled.
  • The financial picture for the hospital is good.  They are holding their own.  But the nursing home continues to lose money.  State reimbursement is below what it costs to provide care.  However, for family members the next nearest facility is 25 or so miles down the road.  The board has a retreat scheduled for April and the biggest topic will be “the nursing home”.  If you have an opinion, please contact me and I will carry your opinion to the retreat.
  • The 5th edition of The Healthy Times came out recently.  I hope you take time to read this issue and future issues.  They cover different services provided at the hospital.  Many of us get our primary care at doctors and clinics on the Range or Duluth; but there are many tests and treatments that can be done in Cook and will save the longer trip.  Personally, I had a bone density scan in Cook and then received an infusion for osteoporosis there also.  One thing I saved was time.  There were no waits and the staff was very helpful, pleasant and professional.  You just have to tell your doctor that you want to have “it” done in Cook, if possible.
  • If you have any questions about finances, services or what ever else you can think of, call me.  If I don’t know, I can find out.
  • Oh, yes, several of my fellow board members and I regularly attend the Trustee Conferences sponsored by the Minnesota Hospital Assn.  If you attend the seminars, you receive credits and when you earn the required number of points, you receive certification.  I am one of four or five from Cook that are Certified Hospital Trustees.  It’s also a time to meet trustees from around the state and get to know your fellow trustees better.  You don’t get to know a person very well being at a meeting for an hour or two once a month.
  • Please pick up an annual report at the Post Office. I enjoy being your representative.


Town of CraneLakeAnnual Meeting Minutes 3/12/2013 – Page 4



CLVFD Annual Summary Report:  Crane Lake Volunteer Fire Department Assistant-Fire Chief Jerry Pohlman read Chief Jeff Sanborn’s report.

  • First let me apologize for my absence tonight.  I am attending a Court of Honor for our local Boy Scout Troop #427.  My son Scott is receiving a rank advancement to Life Scout.
  • 2012 was a good year for our department.  We started the year out by hosting a First Responder class.  We had an exceptional turnout.  The class was offered to the community at no charge.  We were able to get our existing Responders re-certified, trained several community members and a group of young people.  We gained four new Responders on the department.  We have also had participation on calls from some of the youth that took the training.  It has been great to see everyone participating and a new energy flowing.  On the fire side, we have gained a couple members and have had some changes in officers.  We continue to train with help from MesabiCollege during the winter months when members have more available time.
  • Our call outs for 2012 were 13 runs – 4 for fire and 9 for ems.  Of the 4 fire runs, one was a transformer fire in our township, two were mutual aid to PortageTownship (one structure fire, and one small outside fire that we were cancelled in route to the fire), and one response into VoyaguersNational Park for a lightning caused single tree fire.
  • One of the bigger projects for the year was upgrading of our pagers and the change over from vhf radios to the new ARMER 800 mhz system.  Saint LouisCounty provided us with 4 new mobile units and 16 new handheld units.  So far they seem to work great.  It is a complex system but very versatile.
  • As always, we look for more fire fighters and first responders to join our department.  Our population is aging and we are all feeling the effects of that.  We need the youth to take interest and participate.  They are the future.
  • Our financial position is good and we have been able to hold our budget numbers while still allowing for upgrading and purchasing of equipment as we need it.  We thank the community for their continued support.  Our pension plan is doing well, now that we have switched to the Statewide plan with PERA.  Earnings are exceeding projections, so far and we have not had to provide any additional monies to maintain our benefit level.
  • Thank you and have a safe year.


Moderator Ruth thanked everyone for providing the reports.


Review Proposed Revenue & Expenditures – Clerk and Budget Committee member Jo Ann reviewed the proposed 2014 budget revenues and expenditures.  Copies of the 2014 budget were distributed to everyone in attendance prior to the meeting.  Jo Ann reviewed the proposed revenues of $155,929.00 and the proposed Township disbursements of $121,955.00 plus Fire Protection for $50,000.00; totaling $171,955.00. Jo Ann asked if there were any questions.  There were none.


Moderator Ruth asked if there was any other New Business from the floor.

  • Sandy Bodkin stated that Nancy Parvi will no longer be coordinating the Crane Lake Round Robin news. The writing of the news provides scholarship funds for area high-school graduates.  Terrie Smith has agreed to  continue with the scholarship fund.


Moderator Ruth asked for a motion to either approve the 2014 levy request or recess the meeting.  A motion was made by Butch Eggen, supported by Sandy Bodkin, to approve the Township portion of the 2014 levy request of $40,000.00.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.  A motion was made by Sandy Bodkin, supported by Sue Adams, to approve the Fire Department portion of the 2014 levy request of $50,000.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:15PM







Jo Ann Pohlman, Clerk                                                               Ruth Carlson, Moderator






This draft of the CraneLakeTownship minutes has been posted solely for preliminary informational purposes.  Minutes are unofficial and subject to change until they have been approved.