Northern Township

NORTHERN TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS – Monday, March 28, 2022. 6:00 p.m. Northern Town Hall, 445 Town Hall Road NW, Bemidji, MN.

PRESENT: Chairman Jess Frenzel, and Supervisors Curt Blumhagen, Chris Lahn, Mike Kelly and Gary Barnard. Road Supervisor Tim Vigen, and Clerk Mary Israelson. See sign-in sheet for approximately eight (8) guests.


Chairman Frenzel explained that this is the next project selected by the Board to be done in the next couple of years. The road would be reconstructed much like the projects done over the past several year on Whiting Rd, Aspen Ave, Town Hall Rd, and S. Movil Lake Rd (east of Irvine Ave), with 11 ft. driving lanes and 4 ft. blacktopped shoulders. The blacktopped surface is currently 22 ft. and would be increased to 30 ft. throughout. Northern Township Road & Bridge Funds would be used for the project, with no assessments to abutting property owners. It is anticipated that the dirt work would be done during the summer of 2022, and the blacktop completed in 2023. Wedgewood and Mews Ridge Lanes would not be included in this work, but a damaged area on Wedgewood Ln would be looked at. There are also some areas that the road right-of-way (ROW) needs to be recorded, so those property owners will be asked to sign that document. Fuller then left the meeting to meet in the office one-on-one with those property owners present.

MINUTES: A motion was offered by Blumhagen, and seconded by Barnard, to approve the minutes of the March 14, 2022, meeting as presented. The motion carried unanimously.


Mike Hubner, with Advanced Utility Solutions, is the new operator for the Waville Wastewater Sewer District and introduced himself. His company is trying to pick up where things were left when former Operator Al Gorick passed away unexpectedly, and he feels everything is going well. The quarterly report is being sent to us, as well as Nick in the JPB office, and there will be some routine items done as before.


Vigen reported that there has been some gravel road blading done, but the weather hasn’t really made it practical.

Acorn Ridge – Developer Jay Hill has indicated that he has scheduled the blacktopping to be done in his new plat this spring, which is much sooner than anticipated. His Letter of Credit for Phase I is still active to the Fall of 2022, so he will be using it for this portion of the project also. It was agreed that once the blacktop work meets inspection and approved, that 75% of the security will likely be released and he will be required to maintain 25% of that amount for the warranty period of three (3) years.


Blumhagen reported that he attended a long-range planning meeting. They did receive some grant funds through State Farm Insurance for some equipment, etc. They just hired the first full-time female fire fighter, but are looking for students to work and live in the dorm (rent free). Kelly would like to see some further aggressive discussion regarding exploring the concept of a ‘fire district’.


There has been no meeting and nothing to report.


A meeting with the smaller committee is still trying to be scheduled. A new Doodle Poll was sent today. Kelly and Lahn will be attending the meeting. The City has indicated that they are trying to cut down on the number of meetings they are attending.


Bathroom – The contractor has asked that $5,000.00 of the bid ($11,300.00) be paid in advance. A motion was offered by Blumhagen, and seconded by Lahn, to authorize the issuance of a check for $5,000.00 to RB Enterprises. The motion carried unanimously.

Garage – Kelly submitted a draft for ads for the removal of the existing garage on the Town Hall property, and another for receiving bids for a new 32X40 maintenance structure with two (2) alternatives; one that would mimic the Town Hall, and another that would be a metal building. The electrical would be added after construction. A motion was offered by Barnard, and seconded by Lahn, to go ahead with publishing the ads for the respective proposals. The motion carried unanimously. The closed bids will be opened at the May 9th meeting.


1) copy of letter that MAT sent to the MN Legislature supporting oour infrastructure bonding request, 2) notice to start issuing Burning Permits, 3) copy of correspondence from US Rep Pete Stauber’s Deputy Chief of Staff reaching out the Chair Frenzel regarding our bonding request, 4) Save the Date announcement for the Virtual Walkable Community Workshop for South Bemidji on April 15th from the HRDC and Dept of Health, 5) email from Jay Hill regarding the blacktopping of his new development Acorn Ridge, 6) copy of email correspondence from the City Manager regarding setting up a meeting of their committee assigned to the sewer/water project, and 7) notice of Spring Load Restrictions starting for MnDot March 18th.


Deputy Clerk – Dianne Dockendorf has talked with the Clerk, and is interested in the Deputy Clerk position. The HR committee was asked to meet with her.

Letter to Residents – Frenzel will work on a draft updating our residents on the status of the possible sewer/water project.

Road Tour – The Clerk was asked to contact Paul Bunyan Transit about a vehicle for the road tour.

With no further business forthcoming, the meeting was adjourned at 8:00 p.m.