June 27, 2013 | Volume 118, Issue No. 26

DNR buyout funds discussed

Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Mitigation funding for non-homesteaded homes was discussed by the Moose Lake City Council at its regular meeting June 12.

Members of the public expressed their concerns regarding the use of buyout funding for two properties: one located ah 232 Lakeshore Drive and the other located at 308 First Street.

Neighbors expressed concern that not only would these properties be off the tax rolls, but they, too, had also sustained significant flood damage, but were not eligible for buyout funds. They expressed concern that residents who were homesteaded saw their property values drop, while non-homesteaded persons were getting buyout payments equal to pre-flood value, and there would be significant property tax loss. The neighbors also stated that there was a post-flood purchase agreement for the property located at 308 First Street. “There is a purchase agreement from another resident of Moose Lake that would buy this property, tear down the existing home, and rebuild on the property. Then this lot would continue to be on the tax rolls and wouldn’t be a tax loss for the city,” said one of the residents.

The council passed Resolution #13-06-01, regarding the property at 232 Lakeshore Drive. The city is authorized to purchase the property and sign a purchase agreement to acquire said property for 110 percent of the 2012 assessed real property value, less insurance payments to sellers as follows: $110,440 less $56,076.27 net insurance proceeds, for a balance of $54,363.73 sale price to be paid by the city for acquisition of the parcel. Moving forward on this resolution contains conditions that the property owner must supply the city of Moose Lake with proof of the amount of the insurance payment received for damages to the property by the flood, and an invoice showing the amount paid for restoration by Service Master. The property owner will have one week after receiving a certified letter from the city to produce these documents or the resolution will not pass.

The council tabled making a decision on Resolution #13-06-02 for buyout of the property located at 308 First Street until Marguerite Doran, city attorney, can clarify facts regarding the purchase agreement for the property.

Members of the public also asked for clarification of how the city would use the land aquired with DNR Mitigation Funds Concern was also raised about the right-of-way at the lakeshore on 2nd Street; this is the road that leads to the boat launch site. They would like to see access to this site closed. The council members assured the public that the use of these properties has not been determined, but public meetings will be held in the future regarding the land use plan. They will also look at the right-of-way concerns expressed by the public.

Dr. Benzie asked the city to pass Resolution #10-06-03 to approve a 2014 $600,000 state bonding application for the Moose Lake hockey building. He asked how much the city could help with matching funds. He gave an update of the current status of Riverside Arena. The carbon monoxide monitors are in, the freon monitoring system will be in this summer, all code involved projects are completed except for the public bathrooms. The council approved the resolution.

The council approved hiring Jamee Kangas as an accounting intern for the city of Moose Lake and Moose Lake Water and Light. She will be working under the direction of City Administrator Pat Oman and under the direction of the Moose Lake Water and Light office manager. At the completion of the internship, Kangas will receive $500 stipend from the city of Moose Lake and an undetermined amount from Moose Lake Water and Light.

The next regular meeting of the Moose Lake City Council will be held on Wednesday, July 10, at 6:30 p.m. in the Moose Lake City Council Chambers.

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