Greenwood Town Board of Supervisors meets

The five members of the Greenwood Town Board of Supervisors met on Tuesday, September 12 to conduct all the current business before the board. Town Clerk Sue Drobac and Township Treasurer Pam Rodgers were also present. Chairman Dr. John Bassing called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m. and opened the meeting with the traditional recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance to the United States flag. The first motion the board entertained was made by Bassing to add two items to the agenda—one, to discuss and determine the details of Minnesota State Representative (MN 3A) Rob Ecklund’s, upcoming visit to the township and, two, to provide authorization for township representatives to attend a free legal seminar hosted by the township’s attorneys, Couri & Ruppe. This motion passed with unanimous support and the agenda was expanded with the addition of these items of new business.

Treasurer Pam Rodgers gave the August Treasurer’s report noting that the figures she was providing were off by 18 cents. She said that she would refigure the numbers and determine the discrepancy later. The August 31 balances include $351,133.05 in the checking account; $251,424.21 in long term investments; and a savings account balance of $226,693.06 The total ending balance reported is $829,250.32. In August the township receipted a total of $22,593.80 and disbursed (20,893.28). The five supervisors, voting members of the board, unanimously voted to accept the report.

Unanimous support was also provided by the board to approve the payment of claims received since the last town board meeting. These claims totaled $6,870.30.

Four people chose to make comments under public input. Mark Drobac questioned the board hoping to learn if the policy to have firefighters maintain log books on all fire department vehicles has been successfully implemented. Mary Richard reported on the final township rummage sale held in August and reminded everyone that the sales would commence again next spring. Nancy Thomas informed the board that she believed the entire town hall campus had been transformed with the addition of the new pavilion, bocci ball courts and tennis and pickleball courts. She encouraged the board to consider adding potable water to the recreation area and provide diligence in keeping the area mowed and clean. Thomas is the sister of the late Dean Panian who was a driving force in building the pavilion. Dr. Jo Ann Bassing asked the town board to place the issue of fire department log books onto the next town board agenda.

Clerk Drobac reported on all of the written and email correspondence the township received since the last township meeting. The Vermilion Cultural Center, Tower, made a request to seek the township’s support for the non-profit organization’s request for funding through a USDA Rural Development grant to support the ongoing development of the cultural center. Gene Baland reported on the progress of the installation of the new playground equipment and sought permission to store the new equipment at the township until it was installed. The board unanimously approved storing the equipment. Baland also reported that the recreation board would be hosting a free-will donation pizza party on October 21 and invited everyone to attend. The fund raiser will support the playground equipment and future projects.

The town board discussed the ongoing plans for holding a Greenwood 40th anniversary celebration to be held next year. According to Clerk Drobac the township’s anniversary year begins on September 27 and will continue through September 2018.

The town board unanimously voted to advertise for snowplowing quotes in the local newspapers.

Chairman Bassing reported that the board has reapplied for coverage from the Minnesota Association of Townships Insurance Trust. “Hopefully we will get a lower rate,” Bassing said as he noted the township no longer faced ongoing lawsuits.

Job descriptions for the township fire Chief, Assistant Fire chief, Administrative Assistant Officer and Safety Training Officer were reviewed, fine-tuned and unanimously adopted, by individual motions for each office.

The town board unanimously approved joining the Lake Vermilion Trail Joint Powers Board and accepted the agreement establishing the board. The agreement calls for each member government to contribute one dollar, per capita annually. Bassing reported that Greenwood consists of a population of 907, however, 220 of these people reside at the Bois Forte Vermilion Reservation and would be paid for by the Bois Forte band. It is expected that Greenwood’s per capita contribution will be around $686, annually.

Turning to new business, the town board reported that Minnesota State Representative, (3A), Rob Ecklund would attend the township’s October 10 regular meeting. Ecklund has been invited to, primarily, speak to the Cook Hospital’s interest to expand its tax district to include Greenwood Township and other proposed areas, according to Bassing. The town board unanimously determined that it would allow questions from the audience and would advertise the opportunity to speak with Representative Ecklund in the local newspapers.

In other action, the Greenwood Board of Supervisors:

• Informed by Chairman Bassing that a final settlement was reached on a workers compensation claim by township’s maintenance director

• Approved town board members attending a Couri & Rupee sponsored legal seminar to be held in Cotton

• Unanimously decided to call for quotes on wastewater tank pumping

• Approved spending $1,485 on correcting electrical battery charging deficiencies in the fire hall

• Heard reports from supervisors who attended the Minnesota Association of Townships district meeting

• Approved, by motion, forwarding all correspondence to township supervisors. Supervisor Carmen DeLuca was concerned that he did not receive all the correspondence. “I want to see all the correspondence that has to do with township business,” DeLuca said. “When someone calls me about something, I don’t want to say that I don’t know.” The motion passed, 3–2, with  Chairman Bassing and Supervisor Ralston voting against the motion

• Chairman Bassing reviewed meeting protocol and noted that when more than two supervisors were at a committee meeting, or traveling to an event they cannot talk about township business. “Two can talk, three cannot,” Bassing said. He reported that two members of the board can serve on a committee and although additional board members can attend the meeting as audience members only the two on the committee can participate in collective conversation.

• Approved two new members to be placed on the fire department roster. Mike Indihar is returning with 27 years of experience, and Ross Indihar is joining as a new firefighter. Both appointments are subject to completion of a background check

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The original post of this article contained several errors. We corrected all wrong names and adjusted the township financial numbers to correct an error. We also corrected the vote on correspondence to reflect the Chairman and Supervisor Ralston’s vote against the motion. We sincerely regret our errors and appreciate Chairman Dr. John Bassing bringing them to our attention.