SUNFISH LAKE SPECIAL CITY COUNCIL MEETING – MARCH 19, 2020

7:00 P.M. - ST. ANNE’S EPISCOPAL CHURCH

 

Attendants:


Mayor:  Dan O’Leary

Councilmembers:  Mike Hovey and JoAnne Wahlstrom

City Attorney:  Tim Kuntz

City Clerk:  Cathy Iago

    Councilmember Shari Hansen attended by telephone contact and Councilmember Steven Bulach was absent

 

1.   CALL TO ORDER:  Mayor O’Leary called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.  

2.  APPROVE AGENDA:  Mayor O’Leary asked if there were any additions or corrections to the agenda and there was no response.  

Councilmember Wahlstrom moved to adopt the agenda as presented, seconded by Councilmember Hovey and carried. (4-0)

3.  Consider Resolution Authorizing the Mayor to Declare a Local Emergency Relating to the Coronavirus:  Mayor O’Leary explained that he had signed a Proclamation and Declaration of Emergency at the City Attorney’s office on March 16, 2020. He explained that this was to establish a “Local Emergency” in the City of Sunfish Lake in response to the Coronavirus pandemic that was declared a National Emergency by the President of the United States on March 13, 2020. He explained that the proclamation remains in effect for three days and that he called this special meeting so that the Council may ratify, consent to and approve the proclamation, and also extend the period of the Emergency Declaration until June 5, 2020. He asked if the Council had read the proclamation and would agree to its terms.

All Councilmembers present and on the telephone responded yes.

The Mayor referred to the proposed resolution distributed by Attorney Kuntz that would ratify and consent to the proclamation, declare an emergency and extend the period of the emergency declaration and asked if the Councilmembers present had reviewed the document. 

All Councilmember present and on the telephone responded yes.

Mayor O’Leary stated that the local emergency would be extended until June 5, 2020 or until the Governor declares it is no longer necessary.  He advised that during this time period the Council and other commissions may conduct meetings by phone or other means available.  He noted that he had been working with Planner Krzos regarding the use of Zoom to conduct these meetings.  He stated that the Planner had offered the use the Zoom account held by his firm, WSB, to conduct these meetings. He noted that the meetings could only be 40 minutes in length without the use of WSB’s account; with WSB hosting the meetings, the City would be able to extend the length of the meeting without any additional cost.  He advised that he and Councilmembers Hovey and Wahlstrom had all agreed that because they are closer, they would post the meeting notices on the bulletin board at St. Anne’s Church so that the Clerk would not have to do so. 

The Mayor asked if there were any questions.

Councilmember Hovey asked what would happen if the emergency is not withdrawn by June 5.

Mayor O’Leary explained that Council has the authority to further extend the time period at one of the upcoming Council meetings.

Attorney Kuntz explained that he Mayor had only three (3) days from the date he signed the proclamation to conduct this meeting, however, Council would have the authority to extend the emergency time period once the resolution is adopted.  He noted that he surveyed surrounding cities and found that the time periods ranged from 30 to 60 days for the emergency time period; he stated that he recommended the 60 day period.  He further advised that Council may extend the time period at their May meeting if it appears that the emergency situation will extend beyond June 5, 2020. 

The Attorney explained that the Planning Commission will conduct their April meeting using the Zoom application.

Mayor O’Leary stated that Council would use the Zoom application until this situation is resolved.
 

Attorney Kuntz asked if the Planning Commissioners and Chair had been advised of the new procedure and the Mayor responded that he would advise them once the resolution is adopted.

Councilmember Hovey asked if the Open Meeting Laws would remain in effect during this time period and if three or more Councilmembers could watch the Planning Commission meeting on Zoom.

Attorney Kuntz responded that it would not be a violation of the open meeting law if all Councilmembers watched the meeting, however, they may not participate in the discussion.

Mayor O’Leary asked if there were any further questions and there was no response.

Councilmember Hovey moved to adopt Resolution No. 20-06 titled, A RESOLUTION RATIFYING AND CONSENTING TO THE PROCLAMATION AND DECLARATION OF EMERGENCY AND EXTENDING THE PERIOD OF THE EMERGENCY DECLARATION. Motion carried. (Ayes: 4 Councilmember Hovey, Wahlstrom, and Hansen (by telephone), Mayor O’Leary)  (Nayes:  0)

Mayor O’Leary asked if there were any further questions and there was no response.

 

ADJOURN:   Mayor O’Leary moved to adjourn the meeting at 7:15 p.m.
 


____________________________                              ________________________________

Catherine Iago, City Clerk                                             Dan O’Leary, Mayor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We are a small community proud of our heritage and committed to the preservation of our pristine, rural character. We cherish our privacy, yet know we are part of a thriving Dakota County and the greater Twin Cities metropolitan area. With these partnerships in mind, we strive to preserve that unique spirit which is Sunfish Lake, Minnesota.