City of Pembina, ND

Oldest Settlement in the Dakota Territories

Official Minutes for May 10th, 2021, Pembina City Council Meeting

Council Members Present: Mayor Mike Fitzgerald, President Jeff Watts, VP Ron Fritz, Greg Koropatnicki, Jennifer Martin, Pat Burton and Allen Huttunen

Absent:  none


City Employees Present:  Lisa Hall/Auditor, Gary Helland/Public Works Superintendent

City Attorney Present:  Terin Riley

City Engineer:  Brad Bail


Others present:  Blaine Eisenbeis-PFD Chief, Deb Fritz and Theresa Symington (Livingstons), Connor Snitker


Public Portion-    Deb and Theresa here to discuss complaints received on trucks sitting overnight on 5th Street.  Would like a couple more weeks to come up with solution.


Meeting called to order by Mayor Fitzgerald at 6:00 p.m.

 Changes to Agenda

 Add daycare under old business, training and old Ottertail building curb stop under Gary, complaint under attorney, complaint form under mayor and fire calls/pto  under council.  Motion by Burton second by Martin to approve agenda with changes.  Ayes all present.   Motion carries.

 Motionby Fritz,second by Burton to approve April’s meeting minutes with changes.  Ayes all present. Motion carries.

 Old Business

  • Ambulance budget- Have not received breakdown of wages paid out yet.  To receive the state grant they must receive some funding from the local government entity.
  • Budget-Lisa has a rough draft of transfers but Harold stopped in and she will be making some changes before presenting.
  • 5th Street Parking- Give Livingston’s more time to rectify complaint.
  • Bridge- NDDOT will pay 80/20 for inspections if city signs contract with them.  There are items that need to be done before the inspection can take place.  Brad gave some rough estimates on replacing bridge.  To replace with same type of bridge costs would be 4 to 6 million and a Texas crossing would be 1 to 1.5 million.  He will bring more detailed numbers and information on other options next month.
  • Daycare- Brought up that the daycare lease is up in June so think about what changes if any council wishes to add for new lease.


Committee Reports:   


  • Fire Department-   Fire departments will be getting 100% back from NDIRF for another 2 years.  The trucks will be getting inspected next week.  Northern Air will be doing some touchup work on the new rig.  The volunteers have been working hard to clean out the fire hall for an open house this Wednesday from 4:30 to 7 p.m. 


  • Rec Bd janitor- Received one application from Grayson Ohmann.  Motion by Huttunen second by Watts to hire Grayson at $12 per hour.  Ayes all present.  Motion carries.


Employee Report/Concerns-

  • Rental dumpster repairs- Countrywide was only used dumpsters Gary could find.  They charge $125 per yard for one.  New ones range from $900 to $1475.  Sheet metal is $348 for a 4x8 1/8th thick sheet.  Table until next month.
  • Drainage west end along dike/mci drainage ditch- Lisa has submitted complaint to the water board.
  • Summer help- Received only one application from Oivind Helland.  Motion by Fritz second by Koropatnicki to have Oivind start as soon as he is able to.  Ayes all present.  Motion carries.  Motion by Fritz second by Koropatnicki to pay Oivind $16 per hour.  Ayes all present.  Motion carries.  Lisa made suggestion to contract out mowing of south Pembina.  Motion by Watts second by Martin to advertise for bids for the mowing in South Pembina with deadline May 24th.  Ayes all present.  Motion carries.
  • Ottertail building curbstop- Curb stop was covered with blacktop by previous owner.  Gary had to melt the blacktop to access.  He was unable to turn with the wrench.  New owner is going to take building down so water needs to be turned off.  If unable to get turned off it will need to be dug up and repaired.
  • Training- Motion by Watts second by Fritz to send Gary for the training in Mayville put on by North Dakota Rural Water.  Ayes all present.  Motion carries.


Engineer Report/Brad Bail     

  • Sewer drain hole- Will need to look at it with Gary. 
  • Brad checked out the streets and some of the manholes.  Will be looking at what patching can be done.


Attorney Update / Rob Fleming-

  • Update condemned buildings- Will have proceedings at June meeting with home owners of the condemned houses.
  • Complaint- Lisa received a complaint regarding possible conflict of interest with the pest control licenses that city reimbursed a council member for to assist in city spraying.  Council member informed council  that he has his own business insurance when he does private spraying and reminded council that he had offered to pay his own when he brought up reimbursement for the study materials since he was offering to help spray.  Attorney suggested paying half back since would be using both for city and private business.  Council member said he would be paying back entire amount.   When he originally brought it up it was to set a precedent for other council member that said they would maybe be interested in doing so as well.


Update & Business:  Mayor

  • Complaint forms- A complaint was received about the complaint forms and having to sign name.  Signature required to be a complaint was brought up months ago to make it legitimate complaint not hear say.  Mayor Fitzgerald said signature will stay on but he will present the complaints so the person submitting complaint can remain confidential.


Council business/concerns-

  • Curb/sidewalk RRF- Red River Freight would like to make some changes on sidewalk in front of their business for better drainage.  Motion by Huttunen second by Watts to allow Red River Freight to make suggested changes.  Ayes all present.  Motion carries.
  • Drainage by city sign/DFA- Water stands here because no proper drainage.  Red River said they would fix for the city.  Motion by Burton second by Huttunen to allow Red River Freight to fix the drainage at the sign.  Ayes all present.  Motion carries.
  • Alley behind office-Brad will look at alley and include in when calculating blacktop for other repairs.
  • Fire calls- Martin stated she thinks that city employees should be allowed to stay on the clock when volunteering on the fire department and there is a call during work hours.  There are other businesses in town that allow their employees to stay on clock while going on EMS calls.  Motion by Martin second by Huttunen to allow Gary to go on fire calls without having to use his PTO.  Roll call vote.  Ayes:  Martin, Huttunen and Fritz.  Nays:  Burton, Watts and Koropatnicki.  Mayor Fitzgerald breaks tie with a yes vote.  Motion carries.


Update & Business:  City Auditor/Lisa Hall

  • Motion by Watts second by Martin to approve the April financials and May bills as presented.  Ayes all present.  Motion carries.
  • Designate official newspaper- Motion by Watts second by Fritz to designate the Pembina New Era as the city’s official newspaper.  Ayes all present.  Motion carries.


Motion to adjourn by Fritz at 7:40 p.m.

  By:  Mayor, Mike Fitzgerald

   Attested to:  Lisa Hall, Auditor