Star News The Star News covers community news, sports, current events and provides advertising and information for Elk River, Otsego, Rogers and Zimmerman, Minnesota and their surrounding areas. Sun, 21 Dec 2014 02:09:24 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Basketball: Elk boys, girls each beat Rogers in River Battle Sun, 21 Dec 2014 02:09:24 +0000 Elk River boys posed with the River Battle traveling trophy. (Photo by Erik Jacobson)

Elk River boys posed with the River Battle traveling trophy. (Photo by Erik Jacobson)


The Elk River Elks swept the Rogers Royals in the River Battle girls-boys basketball showcase for the second straight year on Saturday.

The Elk girls (5-1) built a 22-point lead in the second half before Rogers charged as close as three points. The Elks pulled it out 73-68.

Abi Scheid led with 21 points, 10 rebounds, four steals and two assists. Gabi Haack added 15 points, and Ava Kramer and Sidney Wentland 10 each.

Marina Nowak and Haylee Fingalsen scored 14 each and Hannah Sjerven 10 for Rogers (2-4). Fingalsen, sophomore JV guard, played the second half and gave the Royals a big boost.

The Elk boys also dominated the first half, 44-24, and unlike the girls maintained that lead in the second half, winning 75-55. They out rebounded a much taller Royal lineup 38-23.

Matt Keller poured in 26 points for the Elks (5-4). Trent Pink had 13 points and 5 rebounds in just 13 minutes before turning his ankle and missing the rest of the game. Zeke Delain added 14 points.

For Rogers (4-4), Stephan Musoke hit 14 points, Lance Lendl 12 and Allen Wilson 10.

The Elk River girls now lead the River Battle series 6-5 and the Elk boys lead 10-2. The boys have played one year longer.

Details, quotes and photos will be added later in separate articles about the two games.

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Letters from Readers: Better ways to address frustration Sat, 20 Dec 2014 13:00:58 +0000 In the countless commentary concerning the Michael Brown case and alleged police injustice, two commentaries deserve considerable merit.

The first is a video presented by the late nationally syndicated Paul Harvey. I have seen nothing that addresses and defines policemen better than this video. Paul Harvey states in his speech that “less than one-half of 1 percent of policemen misfit that uniform.” If readers and listeners have not seen this video, I urge them to Google Paul Harvey “Policeman” on their electronic devices.

The second is a Letter to the Editor in the Anoka County Union Herald (December 5) written by Steven Johnson, a retired law enforcement officer. In my opinion, Mr. Johnson hit the nail squarely on the head in his letter. Others may disagree. I would like to reiterate one of his paragraphs as follows:

“We heard the president say, ‘We need to work together to fix the system that allowed this to happen.’ What needs fixing? America needs fixing! We are a nation that is systematically removing God from every facet of public life, thereby nurturing a growing lack of respect, poor values and blurring right and wrong. God help us.”

I for one frown upon the protest marches that I see on national and local television news. Although “peaceful” protestors’ voices may be intended to express frustrations and need for change, there is too often disruption of law enforcement resources, vandalism of properties and in worst cases — anarchy on the streets. Do these protest marches really represent the wishes and beliefs of most Americans? I would suggest that if protestors really want to enforce change, that they consider a more positive approach by volunteering their services to support police departments in their localities. Many such volunteer positions that will greatly benefit the citizenry can be found on the internet. — Robert Burtness, Elk River

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Letters from Readers: Thank you for three decades of your service Sat, 20 Dec 2014 13:00:51 +0000 In this season where we give and receive gifts I want express my appreciation for the gift of Brad Rolfe, our Chief of Police who is retiring on December 30, 2014. Brad Rolfe has served the people of Elk River well for 33 years as a member of an honorable and often times under appreciated profession.  Since November of 2010 Brad has been a remarkable Chief of Police who has served us with compassion, integrity and honor. Thank you Chief Rolfe and we pray God’s richest blessings on you in the years to come. — Rev. Paul Johansson, Elk River

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Editorial cartoon for Dec. 20, 2014 Sat, 20 Dec 2014 13:00:30 +0000 Editorial cartoon for Dec. 20, 2014

Editorial cartoon for Dec. 20, 2014

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Letters from Readers: Tired of outcry that police are an enemy Sat, 20 Dec 2014 13:00:14 +0000 I have completely had it with this outcry that police are the enemy, and that they look to commit atrocities on a regular basis.

The United States has almost one million police officers who put on their uniform everyday to protect us, and I am grateful for each one of them. On average, one will die in the line of duty every 58 hours. Yes, every once in a while one will make a grievous error, but I believe it is because of what they deal with day in and day out. They have to make split-second, life-or-death decisions, and the garbage they face on the job has an effect on which decision they make.

Those of you who feel such sympathy for ‘innocent’ lives lost at the hands of police officers make me nauseous. Where is your outcry for the police officers who have sacrificed their lives to protect you from these same thugs? Why aren’t you howling about the atrocity of genocide in other countries, where people are literally massacred in brutal ways? Why aren’t you ranting about victims of violent crime?

How about the little baby that has a scissors jammed in at the base of its skull as it is being delivered? Why aren’t you wailing about justice for that life? Then there is Pastor Saeed Abedini. He is incarcerated in a prison in another country being beaten to the point of death, while his wife and two little children sit over here helplessly begging our administration to aid in his release.

You think it is so unfair that unarmed thugs die at the hands of police. Unfair is a four year old with cancer, not a drug-dealing robber who provokes police and gets shot. There are many injustices and atrocities in this world for us to fight against, but our men and women in the police force are not among them. — Brenda Morrell, Elk River

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WMM vs Great River Sat, 20 Dec 2014 12:15:16 +0000 PUBLIC NOTICE
Notice is hereby provided, pursuant to the Minnesota Environmental Rights Act (MERA), Minn. Stat. Section 116B.03, subd. 2, that on December 10, 2014, Defendant and Counterclaim Plaintiff Great River Energy filed a claim in Sherburne County District Court against Plaintiff and Counterclaim Defendant Waste Management of Minnesota, Inc., claiming violation of MERA, in the matter entitled Waste Management of Minnesota, Inc. v. Great River Energy, Court File No. 71-cv-14-8. Great River Energys MERA claim alleges that Waste Management of Minnesota, Inc.s imminent disposal of certain metropolitan area unprocessed mixed municipal solid waste at the Elk River Landfill will violate or is likely to violate environmental quality standards or limitations set forth in the Landfill Abatement Act, Minn. Stat. Sections 473.848 and 115A.02. Great River Energy seeks a declaration that Waste Management may not deliver for disposal at Elk River Landfill any such metropolitan area unprocessed mixed municipal solid waste, and seeks an order temporarily and permanently enjoining Waste Managements delivery for disposal of the same.
Published in the
Star News
December 20, 2014

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Tobacco Sat, 20 Dec 2014 12:14:55 +0000 CITY OF ELK RIVER
Notice is hereby given that a public hearing before the Elk River City Council will be held at 6:30 p.m., or as soon thereafter as the matter may be heard, on Monday, January 5, 2015, in the Council Chambers of City Hall at 13065 Orono Parkway, Elk River, MN, to consider amending the tobacco licensing ordinance. Any person interested in this matter or who may wish to be heard is invited to attend this public hearing. Hearing impaired persons planning to attend who need an interpreter or other persons with disabilities who require auxiliary aids should contact the City Clerk at 763.635.1000.
Tina Allard
City Clerk
Published in the
Star News
December 20, 2014

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14-22 Fee Schedule Sat, 20 Dec 2014 12:14:36 +0000 CITY OF ELK RIVER
The City Council of the City of Elk River does hereby ordain as follows:
SECTION 1. That the 2015 Master Fee Schedule of the City of Elk River Code of Ordinances shall be amended to add the following fees:
Stormwater Utility Fee
The Stormwater Utility Fee for properties used for single family, duplex, and townhome residential uses with public sewer and/or public water service is – $3.00 per month per residential unit.
The Stormwater Utility Fee for all other properties used for single family, duplex, and townhome residential uses is – $2.00 per month per residential unit.
The Stormwater Utility Fee for all other properties in the city is $21.00 per impervious acre per month.
SECTION 2. That this ordinance shall take effect December 15, 2014, and be published as provided by law. Monthly billings are to begin as soon as practical, and not later than March of 2015.
Passed and adopted by the City Council of the City of Elk River this 15th day of December, 2014.
John J. Dietz, Mayor
Tina Allard, City Clerk
Published in the
Star News
December 20, 2014

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14-21 Establishing Stormwater Sat, 20 Dec 2014 12:14:31 +0000 CITY OF ELK RIVER
The City Council of the City of Elk River does hereby ordain as follows:
Section 1. That Chapter 78 of the City of Elk River Code of Ordinances is amended to add new Article V, Stormwater Utility, as follows:
Article V. Stormwater Utility
Division 1 Authority, Purpose and Administration
Sec. 78-401 Stormwater Utility Established
There is hereby established a public utility to be known as the Stormwater Utility for the City of Elk River. The Stormwater Utility shall be operated as a public utility pursuant to the authority of Minn. Stat. 444.075. Stormwater Utility revenues shall be subject to the provisions of this Section and Minn. Stat. 444.075.
Sec. 78-402 Purpose
The purpose of this ordinance is to provide a funding mechanism for the following services:
a) The administration, planning, analysis, installation, operation, maintenance, and replacement of public drainage systems.
b) The administration, planning, implementation, construction, and maintenance of stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs) to reduce the introduction of sediment and other pollutants into local water resources.
c) Other education, engineering, inspection, monitoring, testing, and enforcement activities as necessary to maintain compliance with local, state, and federal stormwater requirements.
d) Activities necessary to maintain compliance with the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES), Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Permit requirements established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, including preparation, implementation, and management of a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP).
Sec. 78-403 Administration
The Stormwater Utility shall be part of the Community Operations and Development Department and shall be administered by the Community Operations and Development Director or their designee. This ordinance shall apply to the entire City of Elk River.
Sec. 78-404 Stormwater Utility Fund
There is hereby created a Stormwater Utility Fund into which all fees, when collected, shall be placed. Such monies shall be first used to pay normal, reasonable, and current costs of operating and maintain the city stormwater system and facilities.
Division 2 Stormwater Utility Fee
Sec. 78-411 Establishment of Stormwater Utility Fee
There shall be collected from every property in the city a Stormwater Utility Fee. Stormwater Utility Fees shall be established by ordinance and shall be collected monthly. Fees shall be based upon the operations of the Stormwater Utility, including an accounting of all monies received and disbursed, together with a working budget estimate of the needs of the utility.
Sec. 78-412 Single Family, Duplex, and Townhome Residential Uses
The Stormwater Utility Fee for properties classified as single family, duplex, and townhome residential uses shall be a fixed monthly amount established each year by ordinance. The Stormwater Utility Fee rate shall consider the impact on the public drainage system for properties within urban utility service area and properties outside the urban utility service area relating to the costs associated with the management of the entire public drainage system.
Sec. 78-413 All Other Uses
All uses, other than single family, duplex, and townhome residential uses, shall pay a Stormwater Utility Fee based on the acreage of impervious surface on the property, as determined by the city through digitized mapping and/or site plan reviews. The acreage for any properties with impervious surfaces, shall be rounded to the nearest tenth of an acre and not be less than one tenth of an acre. The Stormwater Utility Fee per acre of impervious surface shall be established each year by ordinance. The basis for the fee shall be seven times the amount of the urban residential fee reflecting the average residential property consisting of 1/7th of an acre of impervious area.
Sec. 78-414 Stormwater Utility Fee Exemptions
The following land uses are exempt from stormwater utility fees:
a. Public Rights-of-Way and parks
b. Vacant lands with no impervious surface
c. Railroad Rights-of-Way
Sec. 78-415 Stormwater Utility Adjustments
a) Impervious Surface Area Adjustments. The Community Operations and Development Director, or designee, may adjust the impervious surface acreage for parcels of land (other than single family, duplex, and townhome residential parcels) based on a demonstration that the impervious coverage of such parcel is substantially different than the amount previously calculated. Supporting information, including maps and measurements to justify an adjustment, shall be supplied by the property owner. Administrative adjustments for impervious surface calculation differences, shall be retroactive to the month said deviation is brought to the attention of the city.
b) Other adjustments may be applied to parcels of land (other than single family, duplex, and townhome residential parcels) which demonstrate full control and treatment of stormwater on the property. Site information, BMP maintenance records, and hydrologic data must be supplied by the property owner(s) to demonstrate that a fee adjustment is warranted. The maximum reduction for properties demonstrating a property meets all discharge requirements of the current city MS4 permit, without overflows to a public system, shall be up to 30 percent.
Sec. 78-416 Appeal of Stormwater Utility Fee
If a property owner or person responsible for paying a Stormwater Utility Fee believes that a particular assigned fee is incorrect, such person may request a recalculation. The City Council shall review and approve recalculations following any appeal and their decision shall be final.
Sec. 78-417 Payment of Fees
Statements for Stormwater Utility Fees shall be billed on a monthly basis. All fees shall be subject to established procedures for determining and collecting customer charges.
Sec. 78-418 Late Payment Penalty
Each Stormwater Utility Fee billing not paid when due shall incur a penalty charge of 10 percent of the amount past due.
Sec. 78-419 Establishment of Tax Lien
Any past due Stormwater Utility Fees will be certified to the County Auditor for collection with real estate taxes against the property served by the utility established in this ordinance for collection as other taxes are collected in the following year pursuant to Minn. Stat. 444.075, subd. 3, and the City Code of Ordinances. In addition, the city may have the right to bring a civil action or take other legal remedies to collect unpaid fees.
Section 2. That this Ordinance shall take effect upon adoption and be published as provided by law.
Adopted this 15th day of December, 2014, by the City Council of the City of Elk River, Minnesota.
John J. Dietz
Tina Allard
City Clerk
Published in the
Star News
December 20, 2014

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14-20 Adding Offical Sat, 20 Dec 2014 12:14:26 +0000 CITY OF ELK RIVER
The City Council of the City of Elk River does hereby ordain as follows:
SECTION 1. That Article VIII be added to Chapter 30, Official Map of the City of Elk River Code of Ordinances shall be amended to read as follows:
30-XXX. PURPOSE: Land that is needed for future street purposes and as sites for other necessary public facilities and services is frequently diverted to non-public uses which could have been located on other lands without hardship or inconvenience to the owners. When this happens, public uses of land may be denied or may be obtained only at prohibitive cost or at the expense of dislocating the owners and occupants of the land. Identification on an official map of land needed for future public uses permits both the public and private property owners to adjust their building plans equitably and conveniently before investments are made which will make such adjustments difficult to accomplish. It is the purpose of this ordinance to provide a uniform procedure for the proper use of official maps as authorized by the Minnesota Municipal Planning Act, Minnesota Statutes, Section 462.351 to 462.36.
30-XXX. OFFICIAL MAP DEFINED: Official map as used in this ordinance means a map adopted in accordance with this ordinance showing existing streets, proposed future streets, and the area needed for widening or existing streets of the City. An official map may also show the location of existing and future land and facilities within the City. An official map may cover the entire City or any portion of the City.
30-XXX. INITIATION OF PROCEEDINGS: Proceedings for adoption, amendment, or repeal of an official map or any part thereof may be initiated by (1) the Citys Planning Department; (2) a recommendation of the Planning Commission; or (3) action by the City Council.
30-XXX. REFERENCE TO PLANNING COMMISSION: Every proposed official map or change in a map shall be referred to the Planning Commission for advice and recommendation thereon, and such recommendation shall be submitted to the City Council within forty-five (45) days after reference to the Planning Commission along with the report of the Commission on the effect of the proposal on the comprehensive plan of the City. If no recommendation is received by the Council from the Planning Commission within forty-five (45) days after reference of the proposal to the Commission by the Council, the Council may take such action as it may deem proper upon the proposal without further action by the Planning Commission.
(A) Notice. Upon receiving the recommendation of the Planning Commission or after forty-five (45) days from the submission of the proposal to the Planning Commission without a recommendation from the Commission, the Council may call a public hearing on the proposal. A notice of the time, place, and purpose of the hearing and a description of property to be included in the mapped streets and public grounds shall be published in the official newspaper at least ten (10) days prior to the date of the hearing. At least ten (10) days prior to the hearing the Clerk shall also mail a copy of the notice to each owner of land situated within or abutting any street or other public ground shown on the official map. For purposes of this notice the owners shall be determined by the records of the County Auditor and the notice shall be addressed to the last known address as shown by the Auditors records. Failure to serve any such notice shall not invalidate the proceedings.
(B) Hearing. At the time and place specified in the notice, the Council shall hear evidence and arguments concerning the proposal. The hearing may be continued from time to time without further notice. The Council may direct the Planning Commission to conduct a hearing and following the hearing to report its recommendation to the Council.
30-XXX. PREPARATION AND FILING OF MAPS: The official map or maps shall be prepared in sufficient detail to permit the establishment of future acquisition lines on the ground. In unplatted areas a minimum of a centerline survey shall be made prior to the preparation of the final draft of the official map. The accuracy of the future acquisition lines shown on the official map shall be attested to by a licensed land surveyor. After enactment of any ordinance adopting an official map or amending or repealing a previous official map ordinance, a certified copy of the official map or section to which the ordinance relates together with an attached copy of the ordinance shall be filed with the County Recorder.
30-XXX. EFFECT: After an official map has been adopted and filed, the issuance of building permits by the City shall be subject to the provisions of this ordinance. The City shall deny every application for a permit to construct a new building or structure or expand an existing building or structure within any area designated on the official map for street or other public purposes, or within required setback from mapped streets. Whenever any street or highway is widened or improved or any new street is opened, or any interest in lands for other public purposes is acquired by the City, the City is not required in such proceedings to pay for any building or structure placed without a permit or in violation of conditions of a permit within the limits of the mapped street or outside of any building line that may have been established upon the existing street or within any area thus identified for public purposes. The adoption of an official map does not give the City any right, title, or interest in areas identified for public purposes thereon, but the adoption of the map does authorize the City to acquire such interest without paying compensation for buildings or structures erected in such areas without a permit or in violation of the conditions of a permit.
30-XXX. APPEALS: Whenever a building permit is denied pursuant to this ordinance, the Board of Appeals and Adjustments shall, upon appeal filed with it by the owner of the land, grant a permit for building in an area designated on the official map for a street or other public purpose in any case in which the Board finds, upon the evidence and the arguments presented to it, (a) that the entire property of the appellant of which the area designated for public purposes forms a part cannot yield a reasonable return to the owner unless such a permit is granted, or (b) that balancing the interest of the City in preserving the integrity of the official map and of the comprehensive City plan and the interest of the property owner in the use of his property and in the benefits of ownership, the grant of such permit is required by considerations of justice and equity. The Board of Appeals and Adjustments shall hold a public hearing upon the appeal after notice of the hearing has been published in the official newspaper once at least ten (10) days before the hearing. If the Board authorizes the issuance of a permit, it shall specify the exact location, ground area, height, and other details as to the extent and character of the building for which the permit is granted. If the Board authorizes issuance of a permit, the Council or other Board or Commission having jurisdiction shall have six (6) months from the date of the decision of the Board to institute proceedings to acquire such land or interest therein, and if no such proceedings are started within that time, the City shall issue the permit if the application otherwise conforms to local ordinances.
30-XXX. ADOPTION OF MAP: The map entitled Official Map of City of Elk River, a copy of which is attached to Ordinance No. 20 and incorporated herein by reference, is hereby adopted and designated as the Official Map of City of Elk River.
SECTION 2. That this ordinance shall take effect upon adoption and be published as provided by law.
Passed and adopted by the City Council of the City of Elk River this 15th day of December, 2014.
John J. Dietz, Mayor
Tina Allard, City Clerk
Published in the
Star News
December 20, 2014

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