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

By Lois E. Johnson
Moose Lake Star-Gazette 

Moose Lake city council addresses criminal statistics and icy sidewalks

 

January 24, 2019



Moose Lake Police Chief Bryce Bogenholm told the Moose Lake City Council that there were 40 felony cases in Moose Lake last year.

“That’s a lot for a small town,” he told the council at the monthly meeting on Wednesday, Jan. 9. “But our drug cases have gone down. If someone is selling drugs in town, we hear about it right away and take care of it.”

Bogenholm said that there was a homicide case in Moose Lake, and that the case was recently charged to a Hermantown woman who had sold drugs to a Moose Lake resident. The resident died.

“That’s the first homicide case in Moose Lake for many years,” he told the council.

The officers in the Moose Lake Police Department are there to serve the citizens, Bogenholm went on to say.

“The officers work very hard for the citizens,” he said. “We’re here to help people and to problem solve.”

It had been Law Enforcement Day that day and, to honor the department, the employees from the First National Bank had brought a banner that they had all signed and treats to the police department earlier that day, reported Bogenholm.

“And several people stopped in to say thank you,” he added. “That’s good to hear; it’s a thankless job.”

The council approved a detective position for the police department but directed Bogenholm to make the appointment.

Bogenholm explained that Jamie Jungers, a current police officer, has been appointed.

Public Works Superintendent Phil Entner reported that they had to deal with the first water main break the day before.

“We urge the citizens to read the policy about the water system and follow it so this doesn’t happen,” he said. “Call the city hall if you can’t access the policies online.”

Entner also spoke about 18 sites, many of them businesses, that the city crew was asked to sand after the recent rain and sleet created ice all over the area.

“It took many truckloads of sand and many hours of work,” he said. “No one pays us to do this. But people were falling on the ice and there were accidents in town. The businesses are for profit. They are able to pay us to clean their lots. I want some direction so that the city and our department are protected.”

No decisions were made.

Later in the meeting, the new councilor, Walter Lower III, spoke about the sidewalk shoveling and snow plowing policies. He urged the council to inform the residents of their responsibilities in making sure that the sidewalks are shoveled and that cars are moved so the streets can be plowed.

The council discussed and approved by consensus the location of a fast charger that will be installed by the Moose Lake Water and Light Commission.

The charger will be installed at the edge of the parking lot by the Moose Lake Municipal Liquor Store. It was said that it was a good central location, where drivers of electric vehicles could walk to various businesses, including the city’s liquor store, while their cars are being charged.

The location of chargers in each community are shown on maps on the Internet.

City Administrator Tim Peterson reported that a request for $300,000 in funding for a paved walking and biking trail from the roundabout to the school has been submitted to Safe Routes to School. Word about whether the funding was approved is expected in February, he added. The project is slated for construction in 2021, if all of the funding is approved.

The city was awarded $610,000 for the construction of a walking and biking trail from the bridge over the Moosehorn River on the south end of town to the roundabout from the Minnesota Department of Transportation in 2018.

Other funds are still needed and requests will be submitted to various agencies, Peterson has said in the past.

Peterson also said that the city will be one of the sites were people can vote in the special primary and general election on Jan. 22 and Feb. 5, to fill an open position from Senate District 11.

In other business, the council approved a request from the Moose Lake Area Chamber of Commerce to provide $800 in funding for eight chamber events.

There was also a request for city crews to plow lanes on the lake by the city park for the Ice Bocce that will be held on Feb. 9. That request was not granted but the city council did agree to provide up to $200 for someone to plow the lanes, if there was a charge.

The council also approved a policy for the location of small cell towers in the community.

It was explained that this was not an ordinance so it could be changed as needed.

Lower spoke about the city publishing its budget in the local newspaper and in other media. He said that a condensed version used to be published in the past but hasn’t been for some years.

More information will be brought to the next council meeting, it was said.

The next meeting of the Moose Lake City Council will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 13, at 4 p.m.

 

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