Village of Bear Lake DRAFT December 2017 Minutes

As previously noted – following events concerning private individuals – Bear Lake News, on their behalf, submitted a formal FOIA to receive meeting notices and documents in advance of all meetings. The prior post can be read here.

The Draft December 2017 Minutes were again requested on January 8, 2018 – 16 business days after the December 13 meeting.

The Approved November 2017 Minutes were received by Bear Lake News on December 20, 2017 and became available on the Village web site on January 11, 2018.

As noted – there is an incomplete audio record of the December 13 Village Council Meeting. The December Draft Minutes were received January 11, 2018.

Village of Bear Lake Council

REGULAR MEETING December 13, 2017. Bear Lake Village Hall

Unapproved Minutes

The regular meeting of the Bear Lake Village Council was called to order by President Jeff Bair at 7:02 p.m. at the Village Hall. Pledge of Allegiance was said.

Present: President: Jeff Bair Council: Peggy Bass, Marla Evans, Jackie Johnson, Greg McPherson and Ron Ronning

(G. McPherson arrived at 7:21p due to snow conditions)

Treasurer: Sally King, Clerk: Cindi McPherson, Staff: Jared Bair and Larry Gibson
Absent: None
Guests: Two (2) guests

Motion to Adopt the Agenda with addition by Ronning and seconded by Johnson, motion carried. Ayes: Bass, Evans, Johnson, Ronning, Bair Nays: none

Absent: McPherson – late arrival

Addition: County Commission Report after Blight/CABA

Public Comment:

  • None

Correspondence: Read by clerk:

  • A note was received from a village resident for repair to water pipe clean out after repair to water pipe issue at street stop. Bill present was for $10.49, receipt of $75 repair bill was hand written to an individual making inside repairs. Discussion was held, suggests the maintenance manager to provide residents with instruction on what to do when turning water back on. Instructions also in the water newsletter.
  • Motion to pay bill for $10.49 when pay remaining balance when receipt of $75 is provided by Johnson seconded by Bass, motion carried. Aye: Bass, Evans, Johnson, McPherson, Ronning, Bair Nay: none Absent: McPherson – late arrival


Andrea Ware was introduced by President Bair for appointment to replace past council member Joanne Schroeder.

Motion to approve and appoint Andrea Ware as replacement trustee to the council by Ronning seconded by Evans, motion carried.  Aye: Bass, Evans, Johnson, Ronning, Bair Nay: none

Absent: McPherson – late arrival


Variety Store update: President Bair reported the demo is in progress and the finish date is December 29, 2017.

Approval of November 15, 2017 minutes on the Public Hearing for the new DPW Building Meeting and the regular November 15, 2017 monthly meeting:

  • Motion to accept the minutes from November 15, 2017 Public Hearing on the new DPW Building meeting by Bass, seconded by Evans. Motion Carried.Aye: Bass, Evans, Ronning, Bair Nay: None. Absent: McPherson – late arrival

Here is a recording of that meeting:

Minutes are as follows:



Bear Lake Village Hall 12376 Virginia Street

November 15, 2017 at 7:00pm

Approved Minutes

  • Called to Order by President Bair at 7pm
  • Pledge of Allegiance was said
  • Roll call: President Bair, Treasurer King, Clerk McPherson Staff; Jared Bair and Gibson
  • Council: Bass, Evans, Johnson, McPherson and Ronning
  • Absent: None
  • Guests: 3
  • Public Comment: None
  • New DPW Maintenance Building:
    o Information was reviewed regarding the new DPW Maintenance Building
    o Bid process will begin shortly
    o Estimated Federal Funding Assistance is $328,135.00
  • Public Comment: None
    Adjournment at 7:04pm
    Respectfully submitted by Clerk McPherson

{The audio of the November 15 Public Hearing records a packet was presented for the Council to review and related to questions concerning requested amendments to an application. By FOIA the following was received.

DPW (click to view) 

As the public was unable to ask questions, yet to be determined is the interest rate of the loan or the term in years.

Past steps:

THE VILLAGE OF BEAR LAKE COUNCIL SPECIAL MEETING Bear Lake Village Hall 12376 Virginia Street. Tuesday March 1, 2017 at 4pm

Approved Minutes

Motion was made by Bass to approve submitting grant paper work for a new maintenance building with the USDA, amount of $300,000.00, seconded by Ronning, motion carried.
Aye: Bass, Edwards, Johnson, Ronning, Bair
Nay: None
Absent: McPherson
Public Comment: None
Adjournment at 4:12pm

Respectfully submitted by Clerk McPherson

[ The following two documents were obtained via FOIA: send a comment if you need an Accessibility enabled version please]
BEAR LAKE PEC Estimate of costs

Preliminary_Progress_6-22-16 Schematics and Plans

In June, the FY2017-18 Operating Budget was amended to anticipate a $300k loan with a monthly repayment of $1250-$1500 per month.]

  • Motion to accept the minutes from November 15, 2017 regular monthly meeting with correction by Evans, seconded by Ronning. Motion Carried. Aye: Bass, Evans, Ronning, Bair. Nay: None

Absent: McPherson – late arrival

Correction: Special recognition: “awarded by Michigan Emergency Management Association (MEMA)” not the Manistee County Board of Commission. It was held at the Manistee Board of Commission.

  • Maintenance Report: Reviewed by Jared Bair. Written report on file with December 2017 minutes
  • December 2017 Village Council meeting maintenance reportPark
     Graded the park drive a few times
     Plowed the main drive in the park when needed
     The old dump truck went into the shop to get the transmission filter and fluids changed
     Daily well checks
     Monthly water paperwork and water testing done
     Weekly well checks with Ben (Our licensed operator at this time)
     Couple water turn offs
     Had to to a curb stop repair
     Plowed at the well houses when needed
     Pushed the leafs at the compost pile back
     Sanded and plowed the roads when needed
     Put the hydrant flags on all working hydrants
     Put a no parking sign up on Cody street near Lynn street
     Cleaned up debris after all the wind storms
     Gave seasonal employees there EVAL
  • Treasurer’s Report: Reviewed by King. Written report on file in the December 2017 minutes binder. [Treasurer’s Report available here T Report November 30, 2017 ]
    General checking/savings total 56,017.77
    Water checking only 45,128.82
    Money Market Checking 10,075.66
    Park checking/savings total 13,058.51
    Park CD#2 33,065.98
    Major Street checking/savings total 30,483.51
    Minor Street checking/savings total 9,472.51
    Equipment Fund checking/savings total 3,054.69
    Honor Bank CD 1,029.93
    Motion to accept the Treasurer’s Report as read by Bass seconded by Ronning, motion carried.
    Aye: Bass, Evans, Johnson, Ronning, Bair. Nay: none
    Absent: McPherson – late arrival
    o Amendments to Budget 2017-2018

Here is a recording of this portion of the meeting concerning why there was a need to Amend the Budget.


  • General Village Board & President amended to $14,480
    o Wages to General Fund: $2,019.00
    o Equipment Rental to General Fund: $2,370.85
  • Increase Wages to $41,260.00 $1800 from DPW Building
    $1460 from Repair & Maint
  • Increase Plan Comm. wages to $1,190.00 $290 from Trees
  • Increase Office Supplies to $1,610.00 $210 from Trees
  • Professional Services amend to $5110
  • Water Repair & Maint increase to $3,100 $600.00 from Capital Outlay
  • Professional Services increase to $20,000
  • Postage increase to $391 $41.00 from Capital Outlay
  • Equipment Rental $359 from Capital Outlay Capital Outlay reduced to $2,000.00
  • Park Increase Salary & Wages to $15,279.50 $100 from Print & Publishing
    $200 from Park Improve
    $200 from Garbage Collect
  • 2017-18 Budget Worksheets 11-13-17 (1) [It is worth noting that the Village has posted a link on to
    MI Community Financial Dashboard
    The Dashboard opens to 2015, 2016 can be viewed from the drop down menu.]

Bills to be paid presented by Clerk. List on file in December 2017 minutes folder.

Discussion and concern on the cost to the village in attorney fees related to the Bear Lake News group. [this item will be addressed as a stand alone posting and relates to the item above.]

Motion to pay the bills with addition by Bass, seconded by Johnson. Motion carried. Aye: Bass, Evans, Johnson, McPherson, Ronning, Bair. Nay: none. Absent: None

Addition: Two Lake Collaborative Sewer Authority $112.50

Motion to pay the bill to Bear Lake Township for Water Service Franchise Ordinance by McPherson, seconded by Evans. Motion carried. Aye: Bass, Evans, Johnson, McPherson, Ronning, Bair. Nay: none Absent: None

A Copy of Bear Lake Township for Water Service Franchise Ordinance may be read here BL Twnship Water Service Franchise Oridanace 1-2017 – note Bear Lake News does not correct any document received for spelling.

Motion to amend the budget from Capital Outlay to Print & Publishing by McPherson, seconded by Evans. Motion carried.  Aye: Bass, Evans, Johnson, McPherson, Ronning, Bair. Nay: none. Absent: None

Reimbursements to the General Fund were read by President Bair.

Committee Chair Reports:


  • Park Report by Park Manager, Jeff Bair on file in December 2017 folder.
  • No grant was received for the Canoe/Kayak launch. The application was short on points. Bair recommends trying again
    • Needs in the park for the 2018-2019 Budget year:
    • Replacing 5 picnic tables and 6 campground fire rings.

Discussion on a $700.00 bad check received from past summer camper, treasurer will send collection letter recommending a payment plan.

  •  “No Parking” sign installed on corner of Cody and Lynn
  • Water Well update; everything is very close to finished. Property split sale is being reviewed.
  • Water Ordinance is tabled until January for an appointed committee of Bair, Johnson & Evans to review language used.
  • Water rate is at USDA recommended rate.

Streets, Trees, Signs, Lights, Sidewalks:


Buildings, Grounds & Equipment:

  • Self-evaluation of village office building was completed. Report on file in December 2017 minutes file. Village maintenance can do most of the construction work to cut down on cost.
  • No additional money was granted for the plow truck from Revenue Sharing.
  • No money has been received from USDA at this time on the DPW building or plow.


CABA: No report.

BLIGHT: Blight Officer report on file in the November Minutes folder. Report on posted properties, meeting with Manistee County Magistrate and future plans.

Blight Officer mentioned Manistee County Sheriff is offering training; Civilian Response Armed Situation Exercise (CRASE); and wanted to know if the village would be interested in hosting one in Bear Lake at the church or school. President Bair will check this out.

Blight Hearing Officer checking into the cost of liability insurance for him. Clerk checking with village attorney for minimum amount of insurance needed.

County Commission Report: No report

Planning Commission: No report, next meeting December 19, 2017 at 5pm Village office. [to be discussed in a separate post]

Manistee County Trail Committee Report: McPherson reported on meeting. Thompsonville/Kaleva trails inspected. Discussion on changing the name of committee, possibility of dropping the word “Authority”. Next meeting is February 12, 2018.

Bear Lake Improvement Board: McPherson reported no meeting. Next meeting will be December 14, 2017 at 7pm at Bear Lake Township Hall.

Two Lakes Sewer Collaborative: McPherson reported no meeting, not sure on next meeting date. [The Two Lakes Sewer Board met on January 3rd, 2018 – the Village’s Representative was absent. No October Draft Minutes or Adopted Operating Budget were available.]

Ad Hoc – Policy, Resolution & Ordinance Committee – No report Looking for a volunteer student to help out with policy, ordinance & resolution books. Did talk to a village resident to scan items in, waiting to hear back from her.


Budget Schedule: Clerk reminded Committee heads to look at their current budget & potential items to include in 2018 budget.

Employee ETO Policy: A copy can be read here Employee ETO Policy Nov 2017

Motion to accept the new Earned Time Off Employee Policy with corrections by Ronning, seconded by McPherson. Motion carried.  Aye: Bass, Evans, Johnson, McPherson, Ronning, Bair. Nay: none. Absent: None

Corrections; change the word “vacation” to “ETO” throughout the document.


  • Year 2018 Meeting Dates

Motion to accept the 2018 Council meeting dates as presented with November date changed to November 14 by McPherson, seconded by Ronning. Motion carried. Aye: Bass, Evans, Johnson, McPherson, Ronning, Bair. Nay: none. Absent: None

  • Villages 125th year – Looking at October 12 & 13, 2018 for celebration. Marla Evans will be village representative with the Bear Lake Promoters for BL Days promotion. Council would like to do a smaller celebration in October 2018. To be determined.
  • Community Clean-Up Day will be June 30, 2018. Will ask Bear Lake Township if they would like to partner with us for the clean-up day and split the cost. Possibly having one in the fall also. Evans and McPherson will work on this. Suggested Fall date is October 13, 2018
  • Employee Evaluation was reviewed for the Maintenance Manger
  • Mass Gathering Ordinance was discussed, would like a definition of Mass Gathering. Clerk will talk to the Village of Copemish regarding their ordinance.
  • Resolution for Appointment of Clerk & Treasurer- read here at Res for Vil Clerk – Treas Ord Prop 11-30-17
    – Tabled
    See prior posting on this matter here –
  • Water Review Board member – still looking
  • Water Superintendent contract – clerk McPherson will draw up a service contract for all individuals/companies that the village uses for service. Ex: trees removal, water shut off/on…etc.
  • Employee year-end bonus Motion to approve $200 year end bonus to Jared Bair by McPherson, seconded by Johnson. Motion carried. Aye: Bass, Evans, Johnson, McPherson, Ronning, Bair. Nay: none. Absent: None
  • Gary McBride invoice – no approval given to pay this invoice.
    Discussion on: Water Superintendent’s responsibilities are other than MISS DIG flags; expense bills from Gary McBride’s education class & training (Village paid for classes & membership); review of travel expense submitted by Gary McBride will be done by President Bair. Hold on McBride MISS DIG payment until further clarification.

Follow up on item from October monthly meeting.





    • There will be no Community dinner at Bear Lake United Methodist Church, Thursday December 21, 2017
    • Sparkle in the Park

    Meeting adjourned at 9:50p.m.

    Respectfully Submitted, Cindi McPherson, Clerk



    Water Fund 591-000-702 $1,106.00

    Park Fund 531-000-702 $104.00

    Major Fund 202-463-702 $409.00

    Minor Fund 203-463-702 $400.00

    TOTAL $2,019.00


    Water Fund 591-558-943 $768.68

    Major Fund 202-463-943 $898.75

    Minor Fund 203-463-943 $703.42

    TOTAL $2,370.85

    Bills To Be Paid with additions December, 2017 Fund



    Account #






    Receipt books

    MML Worker’s Comp Fund



    Paroll audit

    Manistee Ctyy Controller



    Tax Map & Assessment Roll Maint. Fee

    Pioneer Group



    Public Mtg announcement




    Toner, Paper

    Young, Graham, & Wendling PC



    Bear Lake News Group emails, letters to them re: FOIA, ADA Act



    Bear Lake Ace Hardware



    misc water supplies


Jared Bair reimbursement



Lowe’s purchase of tool & batteries

Haviland Products Co




McBride Septic Systems



Wise St curb stop; Variety Bldgs disconn.




Annual fees

SOS Analytical



Water testing materials

USA Blue Book



new pump

US Postmaster



stamps for January 2018 water bills

Bear Lake Township



reimburs for Water Serv Franchise Ordin

Two Lakes Collab Sewer Author



lawyer fees

Patricia Shijka



reimburse for damage from curb stop

Young, Grahm, Wendling



USDA water project



Bear Lake Township



Winter Taxes on Lake Street property

Blarney Castle Oil Co



Fuel oil – Municiple Bldg






Misc. supplies

West Coast Farm Services



Big Red transmission fluid/filter change






Misc. supplies

West Coast Farm Service



Big Red transmission fluid/fiter change


Total Bills to be Paid






Annual Fees – HOLD for clarification

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