Moose Lake Star Gazette - Serving Carlton and Pine Counties Since 1895

By Dan Reed
Moose Lake Star-Gazette 

County board agrees to waterline expansion


December 20, 2018

“The stars are in alignment,” commented Twin Lakes Township Chairperson Diane Felde-Fink at the Carlton County Regular County Board meeting on December 11. “We are now preparing for our proposal for the State Bonding Bill.” The Highway 210 Waterline and Infrastructure proposal will provide water to the Carlton Junction area, paired with a new water tower, well, and water main work in the city of Carlton.

The project is anticipated to cost $9,000,000 with a large portion to be paid from a grant from the State Bonding Bill. At least 20 percent of the money needs to come from commercial and residential assessments in order to be tax exempt. It is programmed for the county to commit to 1,000 gallons per day for the transportation building and 5,000 gallons per day coming from the anticipated development of the county’s industrial park to the east of the transportation building in the old railway pit.

The estimated cost to the ccounty may be adjusted, the proposal explains in a letter from the Twin Lakes Board, once the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa commits to its requested GPM (gross profit margin), once eligibility and scope of financial assistance from the state is determined, and once final project costs are estimated.

Commissioner Gary Peterson initiated the discussion with, “We now have a water system at the transportation building with two wells and a holding tank to handle emergencies. What can be gained by joining the project?”

Commissioner Dick Brenner responded, “I do know when we built the transportation building we had to drill five wells, as I remember, until we got enough water for this building’s needs.”

County Engineer JinYeene Neumann added, “We do have an adequate supply of water currently. There is no assurance that there will be no well trouble in the future.”

Brenner continued, “I don’t think we should commit to a level of usage until the Fond Du Lac Band commits to a figure for the casino complex.”

Chair Sue Zmyslony pushed along for a vote and a motion to participate in the Waterline Expansion project, which passed unanimously.

In other business:

A buffer ordinance hearing was held in conjunction with the December 11 meeting. No one commented on the proposed Buffer Ordinance #34 and later in the meeting the ordinance was adopted unanimously. A state grant of $50,000 was accepted to fund the program implementation in 2019.

The ordinance states its purpose is to "protect state water resources from erosion and run-off pollution," as well as "stabilize soils, shores, and banks." The ordinance also coordination to implement and enforce requirements of Minnesota statutes in relation to shoreland management and public drainage systems. The ordinance can be read online at

Goodwill Industries is raising their rate for each mattress they recycle. The transfer station contracts to haul clean and dry used mattresses to Goodwill. After January 1, 2019 dry mattresses will be charged $13 at the Transfer Station and, in order to encourage recycling, landfilled mattresses will be received for $17.

Discussion continues on what software program will be used by county departments for electronic time sheets rather than the current paper time sheets. The transportation department uses their own electronic time sheet program and probably will not participate in the change.

County Coordinator Dennis Genereau commented, “We have looked at nine different options and all of them will not work for us. A new service called Paycom may be the answer. It is not being used in any other county in the state.”

Peterson reacted, “We do not want to be the guinea pig to test out this system.” Action was tabled on the software implementation.


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