Ken Vogel

At the regular meeting of the Silver Bay City Council on Tuesday, it was announced that the Minnesota Department of Health has recognized Silver Bay with a healthy water fluoridation award. The honor acknowledges water systems that adjust the fluoride concentration in drinking water and keep levels within the optimal range for 12 consecutive months in a calendar year. This award represents a high level of operator care and accomplishment.

The Lake County Board of Appeal and Equalization will meet on Thursday, April 17, at the Mary MacDonald Center in Silver Bay. The annual meetings are held by townships and cities throughout Minnesota between April 1 and the end of May, at either the office of the clerk or a designated location. The meetings are offered in an attempt to address the grievances of property owners; those who choose to appeal their current assessment year’s valuation and, or classification. These forums are conducted according to the laws of the state and play a role in the appeals process, contributing to the attainment and preservation of assessment equalization.

The council accepted the resignation of Kerry Danielson who will be retiring after almost 20 years of service with the city. Danielson was employed at the municipal liquor store.

The council unanimously adopted a resolution allowing the City on move forward on a grant agreement with the Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board. The $150,000 grant would be used for needed public works utilities upgrades including a high pressure water main under Hwy. 61.

A special use permit application passed the council with one dissenting vote. The permit authorizes VanHouse Construction to build a self-storage facility behind the shopping mall in Silver Bay. Mayor Joanne Johnson voted against the permit application citing reservations about the proposed location.

“I feel the city really needs this facility, I just don’t like the location in the middle of town,” she said.

“I plan to begin construction this spring; I will be working closely with the city to address any concerns,” assured Steve VanHouse

City administrator Lana Fralich informed the council of another letter from a Silver Bay resident commending the police department. According to Fralich, the writer expressed gratitude for the retrieval of sentimental personal property which belonged to a deceased family member.

“Thanks to the Police Department, Silver Bay is a better community to live in now than it was in 1968,” the letter said.

Fralich received approval from the council to advertise for a part-time police officer position. She told the council that the police department is currently shorthanded and needs additional personnel. According to Fralich, two or three additional part- time officers would be ideal.

Last December the City of Silver Bay contacted the Lake County Sheriff’s Office requesting a bid for law enforcement coverage. According to Sheriff Carey Johnson this is not the first time Silver Bay has explored the possibility of contracting out for law enforcement coverage.

“Two years ago the City of Silver Bay came to the sheriff’s office requesting a bid for law enforcement coverage,” Johnson said. “We have now updated our proposal for a new contract that wouldn’t be implemented until 2015.” The sheriff said he has not heard back from the city requesting any further action.

According to City Administrator Lana Fralich the City requested the bid during contract negotiations with the police union.

“On December 23, 2013, the council requested to look at options with Lake County Sheriff’s Department when police union contracts were expiring and a new agreement hadn’t been reached. Information had been requested, but the City has not received or reviewed anything yet. In the meantime, a new three-year contract was reached with the police union,” Fralich said.