Crane Lake Township

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7/11/17 Minutes


                                         TOWN OF CRANE LAKE


July 11, 2017


The July 11, 2017 Board of Supervisors’ Meeting was called to order by Chairman Jim Janssen at 7:30PM at the Crane Lake Chapel Fellowship Hall with the Pledge of Allegiance recited by those in attendance including: State Rep. Rob Ecklund; St. Louis County Comm. Tom Rukavina; Customs/Border Patrol Reps. Marty Eide, Tony Jackson and Jason Schmelz; Gary Cerkvenik;  Supervisors Butch Eggen, Jim Janssen and Jerry Pohlman; Treasurer Traci Bak; Clerk Jo Ann Pohlman; a representative from the Cook News-Herald; and 19 members of the community.




Additions to the Agenda:  Highland Park on Bear Island was added to Old Business and Variance Request was added to New Business.


Minutes – A motion was made by Butch, supported by Jerry, to approve the minutes of the 6-13-17 Board of Supervisors’ Meeting.   All voted in favor and the motion carried.


Treasurer’s Report –The June Cash Balances were read and the bills were presented as follows:  Costin Group – $1,322.76; IRS – $452.45; CLVTB – $4,833.09; Border State Bank – $2,997.81; CL Volunteer Fire Department – $32,500.00; and Payroll – $717.10.  A motion was made by Jerry, supported by Butch, to approve the Treasurer’s Report as read and the payment of bills.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.


The Clerk presented the correspondence.  The correspondence was received as read and will be placed on file and acted upon as required.


The Chairman moved Customs/Border Patrol to this portion of the meeting.  He welcomed Com. Tom Rukavina, Rep. Rob Ecklund, Gary Cerkvenik, Customs/Border Patrol’s Port Director Jason Schmetz, Port Director Tony Jackson and Chief Marty Eide, and community members to the meeting.  Port Director Jason Schmetz explained that Customs has had a presence in Crane Lake since 1953 and that a new lease with Scott’s had been signed in 2007.  That lease will expire at the end of this year.  Customs/Border Patrol is now looking to have free space rather than leasing.  They are currently reviewing all leases for money saving options.  They are considering I-Pads for snowmobile and boat check-in.  The Scott’s recently built a new building to Customs/Border Patrol’s specifications – including a jail – that would no longer be leased.  There are 417 facilities being considered for free space, 293 include airports.  The law to include free space has been on the books for many years and is just now being enforced.  The community had many concerns and questions including:  How many facilities are public/private, stressing that the public/private do not have a funding stream like a public facility does. The economy of the area will be affected.  The short notice (10 months) was questioned.  Rep. Rob Ecklund requested documentation of the notification process of the change.  Have they begun the search for free space in Crane Lake? (No)  They plan to look at the technology option at the Northwest Angle this August to apply results in Crane Lake.  The community felt this was very short notice.  It was noted that the representatives present were the messengers and that the community and their representatives would need to communicate with their bosses.  It was requested that the representatives would convey the uniqueness of the area and the economic impact of the change to free space on the community to their bosses.




Jacque Eggen Memorial Fund:  There was no report.


Costin Group Report & VNP-Visitor Center/Campsite:  Gary Cerkvenik was present to report that the $950,000 LCCMR grant to acquire the 30 acre former Borderland property for the visitor center/campsite had been obtained and that a grant officer at the DNR will be assigned to Crane Lake.  The grant contract process between the DNR and the Township will begin around the third week of July.  The Township will need to hire a level 4 appraiser for survey and title work. If the appraised value is over $500,000, the Township will need to hire a technical review appraiser to review the work.  If the appraised value is over $1 million, the DNR would do the technical review.   He explained that the Township cannot pay more than the appraised value.  If the appraised value is over the $950,000 and the seller wants more than that, the Township would need to provide the balance.  A motion was made by Jerry, supported by Butch, to hire a level 4 appraiser.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.  Gary suggested a meeting in August with the VNP, DNR and USFS be arranged to expedite the process.  Application for a $2,500,000 grant is in process for the visitor center building.



Town of Crane Lake Meeting Minutes – July 11, 2017



Frontier Internet:  Jim reported that internet service is improving for some and not for others.


ATV Use:  Bruce Beste reported that signage and mapping had been approved.  The group has laid out their plans and requests with Benchmark Engineering.  S.E.H. visited the trestle site where a bridge will be constructed.  The last edit on the maps was finalized and maps should be available soon.  The ATV meeting will be at Nelson’s tomorrow.


Trails Report:  There was no report.


Street Lighting:  It was noted that many communities are providing downward facing lights so that stars and northern lights can still be seen.  The CLVTB has donated $500 to the flower committee.  The Township will review their options for a donation and will report at the August meeting.


Land Use Project:  There was no report.


Speed Signs on Gold Coast Road: Jim stated that the County does not feel Crane Lake has a speed issue on the Gold Coast Road.  Carole Scott volunteered to paint a sign asking people to slow down with possible placement at the Gini Stahnke property.  The County will be consulted to see if stripes painted on the road would be an option.


IRRRB Voyageur Statue Work:  A motion was made by Butch, supported by Jerry, to sign the agreement between the IRRRB and the Township for the $87,000 grant for the statue area work.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.


Highland Park:  Butch will follow up on the Township’s request for further information on the classification change for Highland Park on Big Bear Island with St. Louis County Land & Minerals Department.





Variance Request:  The Board had no comment on the variance application.


Other New Business: None


Comments from Officers:  Butch said it was a great 4th of July parade and all had a good time.  He also thanked everyone for attending the meeting.  Both Jim and Jerry echoed Butch’s comments.  Butch thanked Jerry for his work on the Rule Curve Study Board.  Jerry said that there had been a change in the final report submitted to the IJC dropping the water level faster in October prior to the Muskrat mating season and keeping the water at a good level throughout the winter so Muskrats could eat the cattails as a means of cattail control.


Public Comments: Carole Scott thanked everyone for their support on the Customs/Border Patrol issue.  Bill Congdon said it was a good meeting and Lori Sanborn thanked the Board.



Next Meeting:    Board of Supervisors’ Meeting, August 8, 2017 – 7:30PM, Fellowship Hall



There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 8:45PM.







Jo Ann Pohlman, Clerk                                                  Jim Janssen, Chairman





This draft of the Crane Lake Township minutes has been posted solely for preliminary informational purposes.  Minutes are unofficial and subject to change until they have been approved by the Crane Lake Board of Supervisors.