Tuesday, March 15, 2011

City Council Meeting Notes 3/8/11

City Council Meeting Notes 3/8/11

I attended the March 8, 2011 Planning Commission and City Council meetings. Sorry about being late in getting the notes out.

The Planning Commission Meeting centered around the proposed Shopko Development at the corners of Hwy 67 and Rockville Road in Kiel (across from McDonalds). The Planning Commission approved their portion of the proposed Shopko plan after discussion with a representative from Shopko, a lawyer for Shopko, a representative from the construction company, (Smet Construction), the lawyer representing the sellers of the land in question, and Phil Cosson, the executive VP of Ehlers, (Kiel's financial lawyer).

The representative from Shopko, Mr. Pete VandenHouten, (sp?) CEO of Shopko, explained that the store they're looking to build would be about 35,000 square feet, with about 75% of the merchandise found in the larger Shopko stores in the bigger cities. There would also be a pharmacy and they would tailor the merchandise selection to cater to the area. Pricing is the same as the larger stores—same ads would go out to the public as the larger stores use.

The acreage needed by the Shopko store would be approximately 4.4 acres but Shopko would purchase 7 acres. Smet Construction assured the Planning Commission that they have interested parties interested in building/leasing the additional land from Shopko with a 5 year lease, with options to continue leasing in 3-5 time increments of 2-5 years. They are looking at a long-term investment in the City of Kiel.

Tom Ungrodt, lawyer for the sellers of the acreage, said his clients are willing to annex the remaining land to a TIF and to the city. That way, the entire parcel will be in the City of Kiel and the City has First Option to Buy the property in the future. The City of Kiel and Shopko would jointly purchase approximately 17 acres along Hwy 67/Rockville Road. The house that is currently on the property would then belong to the City. (Noises were made about the possibility of building the Police Station there and remodeling City Hall—that's for another discussion.)

Phil Cosson, from Ehlers, spoke to the creation of a mixed use TID to finance this venture with Shopko. A Public Hearing was set for April 5, 2011 at 6pm for the TID creation. In order for the TID to be mixed use, the 3 industrial lots currently held by the City would be part of the TID, as well as the annexed land held by the sellers.

The TID would be created to offset the costs of the land purchase by the City ($250,000); the water, sewer, street and storm sewer development ($500,000); and the Development Agreement between Shopko and the City of Kiel ($20,000). With the additional finance related expenses, the TIF would have to cover approximately $840,000. Shopko is estimating that their development would bring an approximate worth of $2,500,000 to the community.

The City Council Meeting was immediately following the Planning Commission Meeting. The Boy Scouts attended the Council Meeting.

The Council set the Public Hearing for the creation of the mixed use TID to finance the Shopko development and purchase of the land adjacent to the Shopko property. The Public Hearing will be on April 5, 2011 at 6pm.

The Council approved the Right of First Refusal to Windwalker, Inc. in regards to lot #3 in the Rockville Industrial Park.

The Council approved an additional $6,000 worth of soil borings at the Stoelting property to determine exactly how much soil needs to be removed to clean up this site. Annette Weissbach is requesting the additional borings be done, with the City incurring the costs. Mike Check, the developer, wanted to know if the TID covers the cost of the additional borings, as he doesn't want to have to pay the difference. (A personal observation here, the City has already incurred over $40,000 for legal fees, and is taking on another $6,000 in debt, without knowing positively that Ms. Weissbach will purchase the land.) There are grants available from the WDNR and Department of Commerce, but until those grants come through, the City is liable for the cost.

The City approved a bid for the completion of the construction on the Vollrath property at 503 9th Street in Kiel. The bid was from Homestead Enhancements, LLC in the amount of 13,800. This was to complete the roof on the addition, the siding and soffit on the addition and the installation of all windows necessary on the addition. The request for bids was published and only one bid came in. The cost will be added to the taxes for the property owner.

The last issue that came before the Council was a complaint about a resident allegedly repairing cars in his garage. The complaint came from the person who first instigated the fence issue last summer. The complainant stated that they have pictures of vehicles being dropped off, and vehicles in the yard, and “large trucks” dropping vehicles off. Dennis Dedering stated that he has spoken with the property owner and that the Police Chief has also observed the property. At this time, no action will be taken, but Council members are encouraged to drive by to observe whether this activity is a nuisance.

Respectfully submitted by Patty Kubetz

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