At last week’s meeting of the Taconite City Council, officials voted to increase the city’s casual labor wage.
City Clerk Mike Troumbly told the council that small employers’ minimum wage would increase to $7.75 Aug. 1. Taconite’s current casual labor wage is $7.50.
Past practice for the city has been to set its minimum wage 50 cents above the mandated minimum. Therefore, the council set the casual labor wage at $8.25, effective Aug. 1. The fire department wage also was set to $8.25, effective July 1 - in tandem with the beginning of the third quarter for bookkeeping purposes.
In other business, the council:
• Approved the minutes of the April council meeting.
• Adopted a resolution in support of IRRRB reorganization.
• Accepted the treasurer’s report with a month ending April 2016 balance of $93,937.91.
• Approved claims in the amount of $60,033.
• Noted that the Highway 169 construction project was running behind schedule due to right-of-way issues. Bidding for the project is proceeding on schedule.
• Noted that the city’s new pickup truck had arrived and was scheduled for pick-up.
• Authorized the purchase of up to 400 yards of Class V for Cherokee and Blue Bill Bay roads and have Swartz & Sons perform the grading work.
• Approved placing stop signs on the north, south and west sides of the intersection of County Road 15 and the alley behind Stephens St.
• Discussed curb side recycling. The city clerk will put information about the program in the city’s fall newsletter.
• Discussed possible zoning violations in a wetland area.
• Discussed turning the Shoreland Ordinance over to Itasca County. County officials have indicated they would take it over but they have difficulties with enforcement and therefore recommended the city keep the ordinance.
• Tabled a resignation request from Councilor Ted Birch from the Land Use Board. Birch is currently the chair and longest seated member on the board.
• Waived the conditional use permit application fee for non-conforming fences at the property owned by Patricia Hanson and Dusty Sipe.