The City of Pine City is looking to annex a chunk of property east of town from Pine City Township.
According to Pine City Community Development Director Mike Gainor, the Lindig family had approached the city with the desire to have the 62 acres developed.
“In order to subdivide that into housing, it would be more attractive to a developer if it were a part of Pine City because we can extend water and sewer to the property,” Gainor told the council.
No specific developer or project has been planned for the property as of right now.
The land is located along Freedom Road, just south of the Cross Lake Preserve development.
Its current tax value is $344.24 a year, and pursuant to state statute, Pine City would have to pay Pine City Township half of the property tax amount each year for the next two years.
During a public hearing earlier this month, one pine city resident was concerned about the tax impact of extending utilities into the land.
“Do you know what it would cost to bring water there? Is there sewer accessibility? What’s it going to cost me,” the resident asked the council.
In response, Mayor Carl Pederson said that the developer would be responsible for the infrastructure.
Pine City Township Supervisor Shawn Linnell raised concerns over the impacts to Freedom Road and asked the city to help share the cost of maintaining it.
“The westerly side of that property, a half mile of that, lies along our Freedom Road, which is a gravel road. You put high-density housing in there, and you’re going to have a lot of complaints about dust,” Linnell said. “Right now, it’s currently a town road, and we want to know if the city is willing to work into some kind of maintenance agreement.”
Linnell said that it costs the township around $4,400 per mile to maintain.
“My perspective is, if we were going to annex property into the city, we would provide the services that would be expected of the city. If that requires maintaining part of the road, that is what the city would have to undertake,” Mayor Peterson said.
The city council is expected to take action on the annexation during upcoming meetings.
Isanti residents asked to conserve water during project
The City of Isanti is asking residents to conserve water amid a water tower improvement project this summer.
Due to the work being done, Isanti’s water system is running on pressure based on well pump speeds.
City staff says conserving water usage helps prevent fluctuating pressure issues during the water tower bypass.
Public Works director Matt Sylvester said the city will do its part to conserve water.
"We currently have the liquor store, City Hall, the BMX, and two parks that are irrigated, too," Sylvester said. "We can shut that irrigation off too while the tower is down to try to conserve some water and show an example."
According to council member Luke Merrill, the water tower’s interior had rusted and needed to be drained and repaired. The exterior will also be re-coated with paint.
The project is scheduled to be completed in mid-July.
Braham Police Department offers steering wheel locks
The Braham Police Department is collaborating with Kia and Hyundai to offer free steering wheel locks to residents.
According to the department, certain Hyundai and Kia vehicles have been targeted for theft due to coordinated social media efforts.
The vehicles being targeted are ones without engine immobilizers.
To get a steering wheel lock, residents can bring their ID and proof of insurance to the Braham Police Department during operating hours, Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Air quality alert
The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has expanded the air quality alert to include central Minnesota due to wildfire smoke.
The MPCA says that smoke from the fires in Canada has moved south into the central part of the state with winds pushing the smoke south and west throughout today.
The MPCA has designated the air in the central and east-central regions of the state as unhealthy… and you may have experienced irritated eyes, nose, or throat.
It is recommended that residents reduce outdoor physical activities and take extra breaks when needed.
The alert is effective until 6 a.m. on Friday, June 16.