City of Pembina, ND

Oldest Settlement in the Dakota Territories

February 13, 2023 Minutes

City Council Meeting

Date: February 13th, 2023, at 6:00pm

Location: Professional Building

Present: Mayor Mike Fitzgerald, Connor Snitker, Ken Norby, Allen Huttunen, Jeff Watts,

Absent: Renee Thomas, Pat Burton

Guests: Sherri Carattini, Debi Stainbrook, Greg Koropatnicki, Rob Fleming, Brad Bail, Phil Hall, Ben Kneeshaw, Scott Gangl, Steve Krentz, Blaine Eisenbeis, Seth Carlson, Dixon Bowen, Rachel Gornowicz, Cole Hegg


Changes to Agenda: Move Game and Fish to beginning of Old Business; add Daycare and LCRR under Employee’s Report/Concerns (Korpat); add Grocery Store – Trash Bags to New Business. Motion to accept changes by Snitker, seconded by Huttunen. All ayes present. Motion carries.


Approval/Changes to January’s Minutes. Change “Gary” to “Tim” under “Lagoon.” Motion to approve minutes as amended by Snitker, seconded by Huttunen. All ayes present. Motion carries.


Old Business                   

  • Fish & Game – Scott Gangl addressed the board (with handouts) to discuss the possibility of reintroducing the lake sturgeon to the Red River. A discussion ensued regarding the role of the Pembina Dam in this process. Scott would like to move forward toward having a plan in place for the Fall. Motion to authorize Game & Fish to move forward by Snitker, seconded by Huttunen. All ayes present. Motion carries.
  • Garbage truck/rates – Rachel Gornowicz from Countrywide Sanitation was present to discuss with the council the current draft contract. Rob Fleming and Mayor Fitzgerald mentioned that they had some concerns about the current draft. After a long discussion about changes the council would like to see in the final draft, it was decided that Rob Fleming would reach out to Ms. Gornowicz with the proposed changes to the contract. Further, it was decided to remain on schedule to begin services on March 1st, with the first pickup to be scheduled for March 8th. Also, Ms. Gornowicz said that she would send a current list of rates to the council as soon as possible. Finally, it was decided that there would need to be a Special Meeting scheduled prior to March 1st to finalize the contract.
  • Lagoon

o   Purchase of new land – Brad Bail provided members with a new survey of the property. He will prepare a new write up with new information for the next meeting.

  • Generator – quote needed - Tabled
  • Water meter readers – Koropatnicki mentioned that it would cost approximately $100,000 to change all meters over to an automated system. Brad Bail said he would see what he could find regarding getting funding to help with this. An idea that was suggested was to sell the skip.
  • Street Repairs - Tabled
  • Masloski’s lot - Tabled
  • Weight Limit Signs - Tabled
  • House Condemnations – 422 N 5th St – Owner will be deeding the property over to the city. The city will need to get an asbestos inspection, which will cost $800.00. Motion to approve spending $800.00 for the asbestos inspection by Watts, seconded by Snitker. All ayes present. Motion carries.  Also, if the house is deeded back to the city, the back taxes of $3000.00 will need to be paid. Motion to pay the back taxes – contingent upon the house being deeded back to the city – by Huttunen, seconded by Watts. All ayes present. Motion carries.
  • Grinder Pump – Koropatnicki mentioned that we will continue using straw bales for now, but that a new pump would cost $3870 and a second pump would cost $5269. Koropatnicki will look into this further for additional information.
  • Recycling containers at the shop - which businesses should be charged to use them, and how much the cost would be, there was a motion by Huttunen to table this discussion until the next meeting, seconded by Norby. All ayes present. Motion carries.


Committee Reports

  • Fire Department – Eisenbeis mentioned that the department is looking to have more funding coming in. Also, there will be new training provided to firefighters in the coming weeks. Additionally, the Bridgestone Bar & Grill will be opening their restaurant in about 3 weeks and they have asked the fire department to come in and do an inspection. Finally, even though the NWS predicts little to no chance of flooding this spring, they still want to be prepared just in case.
  • Rec Board  -Huttunen reported that there will be a Community Egg Hunt in April. He also stated that the Rec Board would like to open a savings account for fundraising toward getting new playground equipment. Debi Stainbrook mentioned we could just create a new line item in Fund Accounting for them. Huttunen will go back to the Rec Board to discuss this with them. Next meeting is March 1st at 6:30PM.


Employees Report/Concerns

  • JD Tractor Rental: Korpat mentioned that a new rental agreement with JD would cost $8800 per year, starting in December. Motion to make the order for a new rental agreement by Watts, seconded by Norby. All ayes present. Motion carries.
  • Handbook Questions: after a brief discussion it was suggested to amend the 2022 Employee Handbook by using the wording from the 2021 handbook. Motion to amend the handbook regarding both overtime policy during holidays and providing an insurance rebate of up to $475/month (as mentioned in the 2021 handbook) by Snitker, seconded by Watts. All ayes present. Motion carries.
  • 4” Trash Pump: Korpat said it was time to get rid of the old pump and purchase a new one. A new pump would cost $2500, with approximately and additional $500 for new fittings. Motion to spend $3000 to purchase new pump and fittings by Snitker, seconded by Huttunen. All ayes present. Motion carries.


8:20 PM – Mayor Fitzgerald leaves the meeting, and Jeff Watts takes over.


  • Daycare: Korpat mentioned there was an issue with getting fuel, specifically diesel, so that they don’t run out of fuel. Daycare will be able to contact fuel service directly.
  • LCRR: Korpat mentioned that, at his training, it was brought up that we would need to assess all city water/sewer connections to residences/businesses to determine what types of pipes are connected in order to ensure there are no lead-based connections. This will need to be completed by October 2024. The council will need to consider the best way to gather this information.


Engineer Report/Brad Bail – Nothing further to add

Attorney Update – no further updates

Update & Business: Mayor – no updates

Update & Business: City Auditor/ Sherri Carattini

  • January/February Bills & Financials – Motion to approve financials by Snitker, seconded by Huttunen. All ayes present. Motion carries.


New Business

  • Summer Help – motion to begin advertising now by Snitker, seconded by Watts. All ayes present. Motion carries.
  • Sanctified Movie at Community Center – motion to approve use of community center at a cleaning cost deposit of $150 by Snitker, to be refunded once inspected and deemed clean after the event, seconded by Huttunen. All ayes present. Motion carries.
  • Banyon training for Sherri Carattini – motion to approve training at $100/hour for 6 hours (total = $600) by Snitker, seconded by Norby. All ayes present. Motion carries.
  • Spraying rates – TeamLab rates have increased by $635. Motion to approve paying increase by Snitker, seconded by Norby. All ayes present. Motion carries.
  • March 12th Golf Course Fund Raiser at the Rec Center. Motion to not charge them a fee by Huttunen, seconded by Norby. All ayes present. Motion carries.
  • Pay rate for council members who help with public works duties – tabled until all members present to provide a unanimous vote.
  • Local Permit Request for 4th of July Committee Raffle – motion to Table by Snitker, seconded by Huttunen. All ayes present. Motion carries.
  • Debt collection process for overdue account – this is a rental property in which the former renter did not pay their utilities. Rob Fleming mentioned that, ultimately, the responsibility to pay falls on the landowner. Sherri will notify the landowner of this.
  • Grocery store/Garbage bags – motion to Table by Huttunen, seconded by Snitker. All ayes present. Motion carries.


Adjournment – Motion to adjourn at 8:55 PM by Norby.


By: Mayor, Mike Fitzgerald                                                                                  

Attested to: Sherri Carattini, City Auditor


The next city council meeting will be held on March 13th, 2023, at 6:00pm in the Professional building.