Meeting Minutes of the Richmond City Council Workshop

August 16, 2017


Item #1: Call to Order/Pledge of Allegiance

Mayor Hemmesch called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m. at Richmond City Hall.


Council Members noted as being present: Jim Hemmesch, Mike Mathiasen, Michael Ricke, Larry Hokanson

Council Members noted as being absent: Tim Paczkowski,


Also present were: Tesa Tomaschett, City Administrator; Adam Ripple, City Attorney; Will Hopfer, Tracy Hopfer, Chuck Merten, Chad Johnson, Jason Blum, Greg Reinhardt, Kevin Bierschbach, John Kuel, Gordon Dingmann, Heidi Stalboerger


Item #2: Approval of Agenda


Mayor Hemmesch asked if there were any additions or changes to the Agenda.   

                Add: Workshop Agenda A. Nature Park Quote

                Add: Workshop Agenda C. Pay Scale


Motion made by Councilor Hokanson to approve the Agenda with additions, seconded by Councilor Mathiasen.  Motion passed.


Item #3:  Community Service


6:31 Jim Hemmesch leaves the dias stating he is recusing himself and states he is turning the meeting over to the acting Mayor Mike Mathiasen.  Hemmesch requests that the Council allow Will Hopfer and Jim Hemmesch to address the Council.


Adam Ripple (City Attorney) reminded everyone that this is not an employee performance review of anyone.   He reported that he was asked to provide some direction on the issue of community service being performed at the city by 2 fire fighters. (see memorandum)

a.       Ripple reported that the Fair Labor Standards Act prohibits an employee from volunteering the same type of services the individual ordinarily provides. 

Ripple stated that a fire fighter is an employee for the City even if they are called “volunteer”.

Ripple stated it is not illegal for a firefighter to perform community service (volunteer) in a different department with in the city, just not the fire department.


Ripple’s  recommendation is for the City to decline the community service to avoid any appearance of impropriety and to avoid any consequences for an employee incorrectly signing off on the community service. However, if the City wishes to accommodate the request, it may be appropriate to seek input from the Court through a letter.


b.       Ripple stated that regarding the Mayor performing community service for the City, there are a few risks that the Council should consider:

Public perception - conflict of interest for the Mayor performing community service

The Mayor is member of Council which is supervisor of all employees and that is a risk for the employee


Ripple  recommended that the City not have the Mayor perform community service within any department of the City.


Acting Mayor Mathiasen stated that this is not an open forum but he is allowing Jim Hemmesch and Will Hopfer to speak on this issue, limiting it to 2 – 3 minutes.


Jim Hemmesch, former Fire Relief President -

Hemmesch stated that he asked the Judge and County Attorney if he could use the fire fighters hours as community service and they both stated yes.


William Hopfer, Richmond Fire Fighter-

Will stated he spoke with his attorney and he stated they do not have a transcript of the proceedings and to date they have not received anything from the court.  He stated that his attorney and the prosecutor told him that he could see no reason that he couldn’t use his hours as a firefighter towards his community service.  He stated he has paid his fine and is working on his 80 hours.


Ripple stated that he does not have the court order for Hemmesch but does have Hopfer’s court order and there is not any language regarding the fire department.    Ripple also reminded them that a Judge cannot exempt a City from the Fair Labor Act which is a federal law. 




Council discussed the issues presented to them. 


Ripple reminded them that the Fair Labor Standards Act is a law and clearly states that an employee cannot perform the same type of  services as they ordinarily provide within the department.   Mr. Ripple made it clear that this is not the city attorney giving a recommendation, it is a federal law.


Council stated if either of the 2 individuals change their minds and wish to do community service in any of the other departments it can be brought back to council.


Motion by Council Mathiasen to not allow Hemmesch or Hopfer to use the Fire Department hours as a part of their community service hours. Seconded by Councilor Ricke. 


Item #4:  Fire Relief – Chuck Merten, Fire Relief President


Merten reviewed the Relief Association Benefit Special fund balance.


Motion made by Councilor Hokanson to approve increasing the Fire Relief Assn. Benefit to $1450, seconded by Councilor Mathiasen. Mike yes, Michael yes, Larry yes, and Jim abstained.  Motion passed.

Item #5:  Resolution 139-17: Authorization of Temporary 1 day amendment to liquor license for the Corky’s Bar on September 2, 2017 at Corky’s Bar Parking lot


Motion made by Councilor Mathiason to approve Resolution 139-17 Authorization of Temporary 1 day amendment to liquor license for the Corky’s Bar on September 2, 2017 at Corky’s Bar Parking, seconded by Councilor Hokanson.  Motion passed.

 (Temporary Recess for Council workshop: 7:30 pm)




A.      Nature Park Quote – Administrator Tomaschett presented the quote received by Ozzy Excavating.  She stated the City Engineer put out for quotes and in a month time only received one quote.  Tomaschett reported that the city is trying to work with the property owner and have the work done at the same time.

Motion made by Mayor Hemmesch to approve Ozzy Excavating complete the work per engineer design, seconded by Councilor Mathiasen.  Motion carried

B.      Rocori Trail joint powers agreement – Administrator Tomaschett presented the changes proposed by the Rocori Trail board.

                                 i.            Item 3 C: change to read QUORUM shall consist of three voting members, one representative from each member city

                                ii.            Item 9: remove entire section

                              iii.            Renumber remaining sections

                              iv.            Signatures from the Mayor and the Administrator/Clerk of member cities


Motion made by Councilor Ricke to approve changes to Rocori Trail Joint Powers Agreement, seconded by Councilor Mathiasen.  Motion carried

C.      Pay Scale – Administrator Tomaschett stated that the pay scale has not been updated since 2009 and the recommendation is to review annually.    No discussion

D.      2018 Budget – Tomaschett stated that the budget before them keeps the levy the same as last year.  She reminded the Council the proposed budget must be to the county by the end of September and the Council cannot raise the levy once this is submitted to the County.   Council requested a report for all the CIP accounts.  They will need the definitions of designated funds vs savings accounts. 


(Reconvene Council Meeting)


Item #6: Other Matters of Concern and Related Matters


a.       Multi use Shelter – Tomaschett reported that she and Kevin met with Mike Lang, Paragon Homes and Derek Mueller of Lifestyle Lumber to go over the plans.

Motion by Council Hokanson to approve beginning the construction of the multi-use shelter. Seconded by Councilor Mathiasen. Motion carried.

b.       Open Forum – Mayor Hemmesch would like to see Richmond  have an open forum  and they would have 1-2 minutes

for them to speak.   Mayor Hemmesch asked that open forum be included on the September workshop agenda.

c.        Music in the Park August 22th, 6:30 pm

d.       City Hall closed September 4th for Labor Day

e.        Next Council Meeting September 6, 2017 at 6:30 pm


Item #7: Adjournment


Mayor Hemmesch asked for any additional items. 

                Hearing none Mayor Hemmesch declared the meeting adjourned at 8:03 p.m.


Respectfully Submitted,




Tesa Tomaschett

City Administrator/Clerk/Treasurer