Four New Members Join Scandia City Council

Pictured from left:  Chris Ness, Connie Amos, Randall Simonson, Jim Schneider and Sally Swanson.
Pictured from left: Chris Ness, Connie Amos, Randall Simonson, Jim Schneider and Sally Swanson.

Since our last newsletter in October 2010, there are four new faces on the Scandia City Council.  The November election saw Randall Simonson elected to a two-year term as Mayor, replacing Scandia’s first Mayor and former Town Board Chair Dennis Seefeldt.  Sally Swanson and Jim Schneider were elected to four-year City Council terms, replacing Pete Crum and Dolores Peterson, who had served since the first Scandia City Council was elected in 2007.  Simonson, Swanson and Schneider were sworn in at the January 4, 2011 Council meeting.  

The three newly-elected members joined Connie Amos, who is in the second half of her four-year term, and Chris Ness, who was sworn in on November 3, 2010.  He was appointed to fill a vacancy on the Council which was created by the resignation of John Lindell in September.  His term will run through 2012. Ness previously served as Chair of the Planning Commission. 

New Meeting Schedule Adopted
 
Soon after taking office, the new Council  adopted an amendment to its procedures (Ordinance No. 125, Amending Ordinance No. 91) that changed their meeting schedule and that of the Planning Commission.

The Council will no longer hold meetings concurrently with the Planning Commission.  The Planning Commission will meet independently on the first Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m.  Recommendations made by the Planning Commission on the first Tuesday will be considered by the Council at the regular meeting on the third Tuesday of each month.

The Council will hold regular work session meetings on the second Tuesday of each month at 6:30 p.m.  The work session may be cancelled if there is no business to come before the Council. 

These changes make Scandia’s procedures consistent with how Planning Commissions and Councils throughout the state operate. 

The change will allow for more independence on the part of the Planning Commission.  It is hoped that it will reduce some confusion that sometimes occurs between the roles of the Commission and Council.  It may also make it easier for citizens to participate in the Planning Commission meetings and improve televising of the meetings. 

 It's Been a Long, Hard Winter...

As the snow melts, the ravages of winter on mailboxes and landscaping along our roads will be revealed.  If your mailbox was one of the casualties, consider replacing the post with a swing-arm style support.  Detailed specifications are available on the city website.  If your post was damaged by a direct hit from city plows, the city will provide such a support in replacement. 

This winter, city plow drivers encountered some unexpected obstacles under roadside snow piles, such as large boulders and other landscape décor.  In February a city truck was put out of commission for 2 weeks after hitting a rock too close to the road.  This summer, the maintenance crew will be contacting property owners in an effort to remove dangerous obstructions prior to the next winter season.   Your cooperation will be very much appreciated! 

 New Zoning Code & Map Approved

A year-long project to update key chapters of the Development Code was concluded in November when the Council approved new chapters for Administration (Chapter 1) and Zoning (Chapter 2), including a new Zoning Map. 

What is the Development Code?  In Scandia, this refers to all the ordinances that regulate the use and development of land, including zoning, subdivision, shoreland, floodplain and mining regulations.   The update was triggered by the new Comprehensive Plan adopted in 2009, and the change from the Township to City form of government.  One chapter of the Code remains to be updated—Chapter 3, the Subdivision Regulations.  The Planning Commission is expected to start reviewing drafts this spring.

The updated Zoning Ordinance includes a new system of zoning districts.  The districts, as depicted on a new Zoning Map, divide the city into areas based on land uses that are allowed and the standards that apply to those uses; for example, lot sizes, setbacks, building height, etc.   The zoning chapter also includes a wide array of standards that apply to all uses (such as environmental regulations, lighting, parking, landscaping, signs, etc.) as well as specific standards for particular types of uses.  The options for how land is developed (conventional subdivision, lot averaging, open space conservation subdivision or planned unit development) are also laid out in Chapter 2.

The Council, Planning Commission, consultants and staff worked hard to simplify the Code and permit application processes in many areas.  For example, a new Administrative Permit process has eliminated the time-consuming step of City Council approval for many simple permits. 

Copies of the new Development Code chapters and the new zoning map are available on the city’s website and at the city office during regular business hours (9:00 a.m. to Noon and 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.) 

 Mining & Reclamation EIS Expected in Late 2011

In March 2009, the City Council ordered preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Tiller Corporation’s Zavoral Mining and Reclamation Project. Tiller Corporation proposed to operate a gravel mine and processing facility on a 114-acre site located east of State Highway 95 (St. Croix Trail) at State Highway 97 (Scandia Trail) owned by Dr. James Zavoral. 
 
In August 2009, consultants (AECOM) were hired to prepare the EIS for the City. Tiller is required to pay all costs associated with the EIS.
 
A Project Advisory Committee (PAC) of agency and community representatives was formed to provide advice to the Council about the EIS. The PAC held its first meeting in December 2009.  At about the same time, Tiller changed its proposal by eliminating on-site processing activities (such as washing or crushing.)  This resulted in a modified scope for the EIS, and a new contract with the consultants. 
By late 2010, the EIS was experiencing delays as Tiller worked to revise their plans. In December, a new schedule was adopted that, if adhered to by Tiller, will allow the consultants to complete their work and the city to schedule PAC meetings starting in June. The goal is delivery of a Draft EIS to the city by September 30, 2011 for public review and comment during October and November,  
 
Materials related to this project, are available for review at the City of Scandia Office, 14727 209th St. N., during office hours (9:00 a.m. to Noon and 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday) and on the City’s website http://www.ci.scandia.mn.us. Sign up for free e-mail updates when meetings are scheduled or information is added to the site.  Contact City Administrator Anne Hurlburt for more information (651 433-2274 or a.hurlburt@ci.scandia.mn.us.)

 “Heavy Metal Day” is Saturday, April 30

In the mood for some spring cleaning?  “Heavy-Metal Day” , Scandia’s annual spring clean-up, is scheduled for Saturday, April 30 from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. in the Community Center parking lot. 

Residents may drop off items not taken by your regular trash hauler, but NOT considered hazardous waste.  Examples of items accepted are: appliances, tires, furniture, mattresses, scrap metal and wood. There will be a fee for some items.  The fee schedule is posted on the city website.

Hazardous materials, electronics, and all other recyclables, are  accepted year round at the Washington County Environmental Center, 4039 Cottage Grove Drive, Woodbury (corner of Bailey Road & Cottage Grove, 4 miles south of I-94.) Call Washington County at 651 430-6655 or check their web site at www.co.washington.mn.us/publichealth.

 Chicken Dinner to Benefit Fire Department, Scholarships

The Scandia/Marine Lions Club  and the Scandia Fire  and Rescue Department will sponsor their second annual "Spring" Chicken Dinner and Silent Auction on Saturday, April 30, 2011 from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Scandia Fire Hall, 15040 Scandia Trail. 

All proceeds go to the Scandia/ Marine Lions Scholarship Fund and to meet the Fire Department’s equipment needs.   

Tickets are $8.00 in advance, $10.00 at the door.  Kids under 6 eat free.  The menu includes ¼ grilled chicken, beans, coleslaw, roll & butter, ice cream bar, and water, pop or coffee.  Beer will be available for purchase on site.  Tickets are available from any Lion, Fire & Rescue personnel or at other locations as noted on the web site (www.lions-chicken.com/.)  There will be games for the kids.

Items available in the silent auction will include a birthday party hosted by the Fire Department complete with rides, and other great items of interest.  The silent auction will end at 7:30 p.m.

 Short Takes

Dogs and Cats—  The City of Scandia does NOT require licensing of pets.  However, if dogs are not on a leash, they must be under voice command and shall not infringe on your neighbor's property.  Stray dogs may be reported to the Sheriff's department at 651 439-9381.  Stray dogs that are impounded may be reclaimed at Hillcrest Animal Hospital (1320 County Road D Circle East, Maplewood) after payment of impound, boarding  and any veterinary fees. 

Have four or more pets?  A permit may be required.  Please contact City Staff with any questions.

Do I really need a permit for that?— Protect your investment in your home.  Building Official Steve Thorp is here to help you do the job right.  It’s a buyer’s market, so don’t jeopardize a future sale or refinancing with improvements not up to code.  It’s more costly to correct problems later.   Call Steve at 651 433-2274, Ext. 102 with any questions.

Exterior Storage and Parking— Scandia requires that all personal property be stored in a building or fully screened, with a few exceptions for licensed vehicles and recreation equipment.  No more than four passenger vehicles per dwelling unit are allowed on parcels less than 10 acres in size.  No more than 2 recreational vehicles (such as campers, boats, trailers  etc.) may be stored in the side or rear yard on any lot.

Signs— Permits are required for all signs, including temporary signs for garage sales and community events.  There’s no fee for temporary sign permits.  No signs may be placed in any public rights-of-way, on any roof, or painted on walls or attached to utility poles. 

Burning Permits— A (no-charge) burning permit is required for open burning when there is no snow cover.  In all cases, please notify the Washington County Sheriff’s Office  (651 439-9381) one hour before you burn.  There may be restrictions depending on weather, time-of-day or air-quality issues.  See the city office for more information and for permits.

Spring Load Limits— are in effect and are expected to last for about 8 weeks after they went into effect on March 14.  Call the City office with any questions.

Council Meetings on Cable— Lakes Area Television (available in limited areas of Scandia) tapes regular City Council and Planning Commission meetings for replay on cable channel 10.  Contact LATV at 651 464-1143.

 Community Calendar, April 2011—September, 2011

April

  • April 11, 5:00 p.m.  Board of Appeal and Equalization, Community Center Board Rm.
  • April 15, 7:00 p.m. Ham Bingo, Community Center
  • April 30, 8 a.m. to 11 a.m., Heavy Metal Day, Community Center Parking Lot
  • April 30, 4:00 – 8:00 p.m. Lions Club Benefit Chicken Dinner, Fire Hall

May

  • May 21, Scandia PTO Fun Run/Walk, Community Center
  • May 30 , Memorial Day, Office Closed

June

  • June 25, Hay Lake Museum Beer Tasting, 4:00—7:00 p.m.
  • June 25, Midsommar Dag, Gammelgården

July

  • July 4, Independence Day, Office Closed
    August

August

  • August 2, 6:00 - 7:30 p.m. National Night Out, Community Center
  • August 13, Hay Lake Day, Hay Lake Museum
  • August 20, Spelmansstamma,
    Gammelgården

September

  • September 5, Labor Day, Office Closed
  • September 9 - 10, Taco Daze Festival
  • September 17 - 18, Marine Art Fair

For more information and a city meeting calendar, see the website www.ci.scandia.mn.us.
For Gammelgården events, see: 
http://www.gammelgardenmuseum.org

City Hall, 14727 209th St. N. Scandia, MN 55073 Phone: 651-433-2274