Ban on burning leaves again considered | | Brainerd, Minnesota

Ban on burning leaves again considered

Posted: August 21, 2012 - 9:39pm

BAXTER — Leaf raking isn’t too far off now.

But before the leaf piles are set alight in Baxter, a resident asked the council to reconsider a ban on burning leaves in the city.

The resident said there were health concerns with stagnant smoke from smoldering leaf piles and the negative effect it may have on neighbors.

“It’s not an easy thing to come to grips with,” said Mayor Darrel Olson, noting people with large, wooded lots would have difficult disposing of leaves. However, he also said the city also needs to be sensitive to people with asthma and allergies.

Council member Todd Holman suggested taking the burning of leaves under advisement again. The city recently found it needs to move its leaf deposit area for its wellhead protection plan. Holman said they need to talk about leaf burning and create a clear disposal opportunity.

“I think that all needs to be discussed together, the banning of burning or not and where they are going to go,” Holman said.

The resident noted there are options for people to buy or make compost bins.

“If people used common sense we wouldn’t need to have some of these conversations,” Olson said.

In other business, the council:

Approved architectural changes to Dondelinger General Motors and Hyundai buildings. A proposed black painted brick was changed to allow white scored concrete block as recommended by the Architectural Review Committee. Dondelinger is currently building at the corner of Highway 371 and County Highway 77.

Approved Crow Wing Power’s request to delay the start of renegotiations for its franchise agreement until January 2013.

Approved using $6,959 from the alcohol seizure fund to purchase a trailer that shows motorists the speed they are traveling. The purchase is being made jointly with the Brainerd Police Department. The estimated cost to the city is $7,000 to $8,000 with $4,000 coming from the Safe and Sober fund and the rest from the alcohol forfeiture fund, which has about $23,000.

Met in closed session to discuss ongoing utility issues with widening Elder Drive for the Costco Warehouse building project. The council met in closed session recently Xcel Energy and Tuesday met to talk about Century Link to try to resolve the issue.

Adjourned to a council budget work session planned at 6 p.m. Aug. 28 at city hall.

Rescheduled a Nov. 6 council meeting to Nov. 14.

RENEE RICHARDSON, senior reporter, may be reached at 855-5852 or Follow on Twitter at