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North Hudson Board passes resolution supporting bridge

The North Hudson Village Board met Tuesday, March 1, and unanimously passed a resolution supporting construction of the St. Croix River Crossing Bridge.

St. Croix Economic Development Executive Director Bill Rubin outlined the plan to try and get the bridge approved.

After decades of debate, a team of stake-holders finally reached an agreement for a bridge plan a few years ago, but the National Park Service reversed its decision last October, essentially halting the bridge project unless there is congressional intervention.

Rubin outlined a plan that is underway to try and get congressional approval or an exemption for the bridge. He said Congress will have the final say. Part of the process involves collecting support from various governmental agencies in St. Croix County and Washington County, Minn.

"The EDC is acting as a clearing house for all these resolutions being collected and they will be delivered to Washington, D.C., when testimony is heard by a committee in April," Rubin said.

After unanimously approving the resolution, each board member signed the document.

Police contract

The board approved the 2011-12 contract with the North Hudson Professional Police Association Union by a 4-3 vote.

Trustee Daryl Standafer said he would not vote in favor of the contract because it calls for a 2 percent salary increase for both years of the contract.

Trustee Star Wekkin also spoke against the agreement.

"With the budget repair bill, we don't know how municipalities will be impacted," Wekkin said.

When it came to a vote, Trustee Marc Zappa joined Wekkin and Standafer in voting against the agreement. Voting in favor of the contract were trustees Jim Thomas, Joe Cothern, Colleen O'Brien-Berglund and President George Klein.

St. Croix Station project

There was no one in attendance for a public hearing regarding street improvements along Station Circle North in the St. Croix Station neighborhood of North Hudson. After the hearing closed, followed by a brief discussion, the board unanimously approved a resolution declaring preliminary intent to get the project started and levy special assessments to residents along the repair route.

Kevin Oium of Cedar Corporation (village engineer) outlined the details of the project. Total cost is projected at $148,140, of which residents will be assessed half that amount ($74,070).

With some minor exceptions, most of the 22 property owners will be assessed $3,742.80.

Oium said the only substantial unknown factor at this time would be the price of oil, which could affect the price of asphalt. He is hopeful, however, that any increases might be accounted for cutting some costs in other areas.

Other action

  • Approved an ordinance involving the amendment of the current burning rules in the village limits. Many of the past rules still apply, but one of the major changes allows land owners to apply for an annual permit, rather than a permit that is valid for just five days. Property owners will also be responsible for any costs resulting from a fire that gets out of control. The complete rules and regulations are available at the Village Hall or at The board also approved a new form for applicants.
  • Approved payment of three sets of non-recurring claims (received at various times). The major one was for $106,168.01 for February claims. The amount was significantly higher than normal because it involved payments to the city of Hudson for EMS and fire service to the village --those payments are made twice each year. Claims were also approved for $2,206.30 and $76.25 for claims from 2010 that were not received until February.
  • Police Chief Mark Richert reported that the collection of unwanted medications and drugs is now available each day at the North Hudson Police Department. The program began last fall as a one-day collection, but will now be available essentially every day. The effort is also available at police departments around the county and the sheriff's office. Richert paid special recognition to Dolly Qualls who was a big supporter of the project last fall and Roger Norelius who built the drug collection box for the village of North Hudson.
  • Approved a letter of understanding for impound housing services with the Animal Humane Society in Woodbury.
  • Postponed the purchase of a flag pole for the Chief Jansen Memorial Park. President George Klein expressed concerns about the cost of lighting the pole, which has not been explored. He suggested that all potential costs be determined before the purchasing of the flag pole for approximately $855.
  • The April village board meeting has been moved to Tuesday, March 29. The normal meeting date would be April 5, but there are local elections that day.

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