Kwik Trip coming to Stacy, slowly

Kwik Trip representative Steve Teigen recently took the next step toward the convenience store chain making a home in the city of Stacy.

City Engineer Mark Statz has been working with the company. He addressed a memo outlining the latest on the project at the Nov. 12 Stacy City Council meeting.

The city and Kwik Trip have been in discussions on connecting the property, at the site of the Sunrise Market, to city services with water and sanitary sewer. Statz remarked that sewer lines running from the store site through the mobile home park to the lift station were televised at Kwik Trip’s expense. The line is in good condition and can be converted into a city line Statz said.

There is one issue, however: There is a bend in the line that will cost $5,000 to correct. Statz said this fix should be incorporated into the agreement for covering the costs to convert the property.

Statz also said an adjacent storm sewer is in good working order, is adequate size and capacity, and has recently been maintained. His opinion was, should there be flooding, the risk to the Sunrise Mobile Home park is minimal.

Statz requested a sketch of easements from Kwik Trip to record the lines.

A water system can be diverted from the mobile home park at the northeast corner.

Statz suggested installing a “looping system” to the north of the property that would supply water independent of the mobile home park at a cost of $50,000.

“Kwik Trip is investing I don’t know how many hundreds of thousands of dollars in that store,” Statz said.

“Millions,” Teigen interjected.

Councilor Jim Ness asked if any of this had been discussed with the owners of the mobile home park. Statz said it had not been discussed with them and also that they would have to approach A1 Tire about the issue.

“This is the best way to do it; the question is who pays for it?” asked Mayor Mark Utecht after studying the memo.

Utecht said he needs to be able to justify how the city will be better off if the city contributes to the expense of bringing Kwik Trip to town, now estimated at $55,000. He cited another business was turned down on a request for a waiver regarding municipal service.

“I want this project to go forward. I think this will be good for the city and for the community in general, but we will not be making money off of this,” Utecht said.

Teigen said he appreciates the concern of fairness, but questioned if the other business was being asked to move utility lines 500 feet. Teigen recalled the initial feasibility study determined there is adequate water and sewer. He said the Ulven family will benefit as the current owners of the site; the city will benefit and Kwik Trip will benefit from utility connection. The water main would not be connected to the mobile home park.

Teigen proposed the Ulvens and Kwik Trip would pay two-thirds and the city one-third and that the city might agree to bargain off its share of the money in exchange for a reduced utility bill for Kwik Trip over a number of years.

“We’ll pay for (it), and we’ll kind of end up paying your share back, too,” Teigen said.

He agreed to take this up with John Ulven, too. If Ulven refuses, Teigen said he will take responsibility. Water and sewer improvements were written in as accepted.

Utecht figured the cost to the city at $18,000. He reasoned this plan makes a section of the water main more accessible for future development, although Utecht said he can’t foresee development on the north side of Stacy happening “in my lifetime.”

“Whenever there has been any kind of development, the developer has always paid for this,” Councilor Jim Ness said.

“It is also part of our system, and we have to do what we have to do,” Councilor Charles Lucia said. “We’re not going to pay for it all.”

Councilor Michael Carlson thought it was favorable that there is no cash out of hand involved in Teigen’s proposal.

“I see it as a win all around,” he said.

City Attorney Peter Grundhoefer advised that from a legal perspective, Statz has made his points clear as to how the infrastructure will be run, and he saw no issue with the city allowing payoff for the project in shares.

Utecht made a motion to share the cost of the project and a second motion to accept the cost sharing as proposed with a maximum dollar amount of $18,000. A motion to reduce the utility bill by $3,600 per year, or 50 percent of utility charges, “whichever is greater, until the money is paid off, which will be five years or less,” was made by Utecht.

The council approved both motions, and Teigen took a step toward the door as the city took a step toward welcoming a new business.

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