15 West Kellogg Blvd.  
Saint Paul, MN 55102  
City of Saint Paul  
Minutes - Final  
Legislative Hearings  
Marcia Moermond, Legislative Hearing Officer  
Mai Vang, Hearing Coordinator  
Joanna Zimny, Executive Assistant  
651-266-8585  
Tuesday, November 1, 2022  
9:00 AM  
Room 330 City Hall & Court House/Remote  
9:00 a.m. Hearings  
Special Tax Assessments  
1
RLH TA 22-399  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 1051  
ARKWRIGHT STREET. (File No. J2302B, Assessment No. 238101)  
Brendmoen  
Sponsors:  
Delete the assessment.  
Randy Yeary, owner, appeared via phone  
[Moermond gives background of appeals process]  
Staff report by Supervisor Joe Yannarelly: this is an emergency boarding requested by  
the St. Paul Police Department at 2:31 am on July 19 to board a broken window. Total  
proposed assessment of $534.  
Moermond: what did your tenant tell you about this?  
Yeary: she told me absolutely nothing. That’s part of my issue and concern. Reading  
through the police report it looked like officers came twice, once at 11 am and two  
windows were broken. I noticed the officer offered to board and she declined. On the  
second occurrence there isn’t language where it was offered, it just says a crew was  
contacted for the windows. Doesn’t sound like the same consideration was given to my  
tenant. The biggest issue I have is as the owner why wasn’t I contacted to have first  
right of refusal to get myself out of bed at 2:30 in the morning to do it myself. The  
tenant has my number. She lied to me months later when I found out about what  
happened. She no longer lives there. It was quite a mess.  
Moermond: I too saw the disconnect. It isn’t incumbent on the police in an emergency  
to reach out to you. They can’t leave a site unsecured, and they have to close it up and  
move on to the next call. In the case where the tenant was asked about securing, it is  
unusual. The tenant said they didn’t want it and services weren’t provided, rather on the  
other occasion. In the normal course of events, I would say you are stuck with the  
assessment. The tenant may not have been acting with full information. It isn’t 100  
percent clear so I don’t feel comfortable recommending approval. You are very close to  
the line though; the police don’t have to call you. They can just say it is open and not  
safe and need to be secured. It sounds like there was a violent exchange going on and  
public safety was in play. I’m going to recommend deletion but it is one of those where  
it isn’t a great circumstance for the people who live there or for the neighborhood. I’m  
glad to hear you have got new tenants and hopefully things have calmed down. Any  
questions?  
Yeary: I removed the 2 sheets of plywood. $370 to put up 2 pieces of plywood and 8  
screws?  
Moermond: that is easily answered.  
Yannarelly: it is $250 just to get them out of the bed in the middle of the night, and  
then it is $60 per board. It is like having an emergency plumber out in the night.  
Yeary: and my other questions—  
Moermond: and you understand this is being deleted? These questions would be for  
future reference. Let’s be expeditious.  
Yearly: I didn’t understand, I do now. I’m fine. Let’s end this call.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/25/2023  
2
RLH TA 22-398  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 1370  
CARLING DRIVE. (File No. J2302B, Assessment No. 238101)  
Jalali  
Sponsors:  
Delete the assessment.  
No one appeared  
Moermond: we have a $474 total assessment. This is pretty straightforward deletion,  
can you describe why?  
Staff report by Supervisor Joe Yannarelly: this was emergency abatement to break  
down a door to render aide to a victim of a medical emergency in an apartment  
building.  
Moermond: it is our practice to delete assessments on welfare checks.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/25/2023  
3
RLH TA 22-395  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 284  
MAPLE STREET. (File No. VB2302, Assessment No. 238801)  
Prince  
Sponsors:  
Reduce assessment from $2,284 to $1,142.  
Ty Lawrence, owner, appeared via phone  
[Moermond gives background of appeals process]  
Staff report by Supervisor Joe Yannarelly: this is a Vacant Building fee. The house  
entered the program February 7, 2020 on condemnation. It has been rehabbed as of  
October 21, 2022. This was the prospective fee from Feb 2022 to Feb 2023. Been in  
the program 8 months of this year. Total proposed assessment of $2,284.  
Moermond: tell me about what has been going on since we spoke last Mr. Lawrence?  
Lawrence: it has continued to be a complete nightmare, mainly due to inability to  
access materials. I had to terminate a previous contractor because they were taking  
too long. The inspector even told me they weren’t getting communication from the  
HVAC contractor. I went to another contractor. They too had issues with materials. I  
tried to work it out as much as I could with the inspector and team so everyone was in  
communication. I don’t mind paying the fee but I am double paying fees due to  
vandalism. We finally reached the finish line. I’m just looking for some type of support,  
but if the City decides to go another way I’m all ears.  
Moermond: it does look like we have a late pull on the mechanical and warm air,  
August of 2022 while the rest of your permits were pulled in large during 2021. That is a  
real difference and matches what you said. In most cases I would say the fee we are  
talking about applies from February 2022 to February 2023. You’ve been in the  
program 8 and a half months because the file was closed October 21. I understand  
contractor and supply problems. If it would have been six months or less I’d look at  
prorating. Given the issues and that the other permits were pulled in a timely fashion  
I’m going to recommend this is cut in half and treated as if it was in the program for  
half a year. If you want to look for more we can get you that information, it is also on  
the back if your assessment letter.  
Lawrence: I totally understand. Any relief is appreciated. I’m grateful for the time you  
are taking.  
Moermond: so it will be $1,142 less than it would have been.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/25/2023  
4
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 779  
RAYMOND AVENUE. (File No. VB2301, Assessment No. 238800)  
Jalali  
Sponsors:  
Layover to LH January 3, 2023 at 9 am to see permit status for possible proration of  
fee. (CPH Jan 11, 2023)  
Angie Peirach, owner, appeared via phone  
[Moermond gives background of appeals process]  
Staff report by Supervisor Joe Yannarelly: this is a Vacant Building fee that covers the  
period from March 31, 2022 to March 31, 2023. A 90-day waiver was given March 22 to  
June 30 by the Hearing Officer to allow for completion, which hasn’t happened. This is  
for an assessment of $2,616.  
Moermond: when last we spoke at the end of March I recommended a 90-day waiver  
knowing you wouldn’t finish but that would have smoothed things over with permits. We  
knew we’d be talking about potentially prorating the fee if you could get the work done  
more quickly. I looked at your permits, but I’d like to hear about how the project is  
going and your timeline.  
Pierach: I couldn’t recall if I had paid the previous year. I feel like this is the second go  
around.  
Moermond: it is.  
Pierach: so, I’ve already paid the full $2,000? I wanted to clarify that.  
Moermond: yes, it is an annual fee.  
Pierach: we had a delay with getting our permits pulled. I have been in touch with our  
City Council person this summer. We had 3 rounds of revisions for plan review. Some  
were minor, but every time we had to go back it was another 4 weeks of waiting. So a  
30-day process took 3 and a half months before we could even start. We were hopeful  
in March that we would be open this fall. That’s why the 90-day waiver made sense  
then. We had everything to the City in early May. 3.5 months of delays. We finally got  
permits after I contacted the City Council. Then another month to get utility permits. I  
had to go to the office myself and deliver the check, and then follow up. The  
application was lost. That was another month delay. The good news is we’ve made a lot  
of progress in the last 2 months. We have utilities in, great weather to do the demo.  
We’ve had good luck with contractors. Racing the clock to get everything in shape so  
we don’t have to do much in the winter. Our projected opening is the end of month, with  
a soft opening for a month. If you would have told me wouldn’t be open this fall I would  
have said no way. We had such a hard time getting permits. I know they were short  
staffed. As a small business owner trying to get this going, I’m getting penalized for  
something I had no control over. Every dollar is critical right now because we’re paying  
for over 2 years to get this going.  
Moermond: and I would note that I’m sympathetic that I know DSI has been slammed.  
I just want to note you went in the Vacant Building program in March of 2021. But you  
didn’t apply for your first permits until January 2022. You’ve kind of done a  
self-imposed delay of 10 months before you even started knocking on the City’s door. I  
know you applied for site plan originally in February. I see you pulled an interior demo  
permit in March. Alarm permits in May. Then we have plumbing and warm air in rapid  
succession in June and July. Then water sewer in September. I assume that’s when  
the Council office was involved. I don’t know what the Department’s hold up was or  
what the contractor’s put in their application and that interaction. What I can tell you is  
that I’m looking at, as of today, you being in the program for 7 out of 12 months. By  
the time this goes to Council in January it will be 10 and a half months out of 12. I  
would like to look at this the beginning of January, right before City Council. I can find  
out more from the Department on what the delays were. Then the Council could give  
some consideration for prorating it, but I will tell you that 10 and a half months rarely  
would have the fee prorated. It also involves you having your Certificate of Occupancy  
in hand at that point. If you were to be credited with 3 months in January, that may get  
it cut in half. That’s the most I’d be looking for at this point. I’ll revisit this January 3 at  
9 am we will look at this, it goes to Council Public Hearing January 11.  
Pierach: that sounds great, thank you.  
Laid Over to the Legislative Hearings due back on 1/3/2023  
5
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 984  
TUSCARORA AVENUE. (File No. VB2302, Assessment No. 238801)  
Noecker  
Sponsors:  
Layover to LH January 17, 2023 at 9 am to check on permit status for possible  
proration of fee. (CPH Jan 25)  
Grace De Jong, owner, appeared via phone  
[Moermond gives background of appeals process]  
Staff Report by Supervisor Joe Yannarelly: this is a Category 1 fire Vacant Building  
opened March 15, 2022. Given an automatic 90-day waiver. Total proposed  
assessment of 2,616 has kicked in. Four active permits pulled recently.  
Moermond: what is going on?  
De Jong: it was an electrical fire that destroyed the whole house and made it  
uninhabitable. It was boarded that day so it has been secure since. I have been  
working with my insurance company ever since. I also secured a mitigation company  
within the first few weeks. It hasn’t gone as fast as I would have liked. The mitigation  
process just finished a month ago. They were doing the work to make sure to see how  
much they had to get rid of to make it habitable. As they got deeper they found out  
they needed to gut the entire inside. Exterior walls were ok but everything inside  
needed to be gutted. After they determined that and they did all the oxygenation and  
things to make sure the space was ready for repair they started to work on those  
repairs. I’ve been checking on it regularly and been in different air Airbnb’s. Most  
recently just a few blocks away. I’m checking in weekly and in contact with the  
contractors frequently. Contractors are in there most days due to the work being done.  
It is secured by locks but people are in most days. The neighbors have my contact  
information to reach me. They say work should be done by the end of the year. I’m  
hoping that is true. I was initially told end of September. Permits have been pulled and  
seem to be moving along better. I feel like with all the costs with me having to be out  
of my home this fee is a burden on top of everything else.  
Moermond: have you talked to your insurance company about paying this fee?  
De Jong: I haven’t.  
Moermond: they typically would cover this. I know things are moving as fast as they  
can when insurance companies are involved. That slows things down. That’s’ why there  
is that automatic 90-day waiver, to give credit for that. Normally with fire damaged  
structures I see them in the program for a bit over a year. They usually end o with one  
year’s worth of fee and we can almost always get them out from the second year’s fee.  
If you’re out by end of year that’s super positive. What I see now, you’ll have been in  
the program for 7.5 months out of the billable year as of today. This has a Public  
Hearing in January at which point it will be 10 months out of 12. If you are able to get  
out of the Vacant Building program by end of year we’re still 9 months in. If I were you  
I’d bring the fee to my insurance company and see if they will cover it. I’m willing to  
look at this again but I would only be able to help in the slightest bit, if at all. Know we  
could work on not having a fee at all if there are any delays, for next year. Let’s see if  
you can get things done and we can talk again the beginning of January and see where  
things are. Then we can talk about current information. Let’s talk again January 17.  
We’ll email confirming this. In the meantime, definitely talk to your insurance company.  
I can’t get you out from being in the Vacant Building program.  
De Jong: I know we’re maxing out my coverage. I did submit the boarding fees, but it  
is all part of one lump sum.  
Laid Over to the Legislative Hearings due back on 1/17/2023  
6
RLH TA 22-385  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 120  
WINONA STREET EAST. (File No. VB2302, Assessment No. 238801)  
Noecker  
Sponsors:  
Delete the assessment.  
No one appeared  
Moermond: in reviewing this, we saw that the property was only in the program for 2 out  
of the 12 months before it got its Code Compliance certificate. We called the owner  
and let him know, we had our Spanish speaking staff call him. He’s been notified it is  
going to be deleted.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/25/2023  
10:00 a.m. Hearings  
Special Tax Assessments  
7
RLH TA 22-369  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 277  
AURORA AVENUE. (File No. J2301E, Assessment No. 238300)  
Balenger  
Sponsors:  
Approve the assessment.  
Joe Prescott, owner, appeared via phone  
[Moermond gives background of appeals process]  
Moermond: we have two assessments, one for activity in May up to May 23, and May  
23 through June 21. We’ll talk about the first one and then the second. The first  
assessment includes four separate bills.  
Staff report by Supervisor Lisa Martin: the date of the orders was April 13, 2022,  
noncompliance with Excessive Consumption’s issued April 28, May 4, May 6, and May  
17 2022. Work was done September 21 by owner. Several work orders at the issues.  
Literally too many orders to list, 10 or so a year since 2018. Total proposed  
assessment of $531. Photos are attached to the file.  
Moermond: so we have a vehicle order and a Summary Abatement Order? The vehicle  
order was April 13. When was the cleanup issued?  
Martin: April 13, for cleanup of garbage.  
Moermond: the inspector to clean up the garbage revisited April 28 and it wasn’t done,  
so we issued a bill instead of sending a crew, for $122 vs. the larger cost of cleanup.  
Went back May 4. Another bill. We have 2 other bills in that period and those two  
Excessive Consumption bills. A bill May 6 for not having the vehicle dealt with and May  
17 for not having garbage done with. That’s what leads to this large assessment. It  
sounds like you may be the tenant?  
Prescott: these are all in my name to pay now, I didn’t own the property at this point. I  
bought it the end of April. I wasn’t able to enter the property until May. All of these, I  
kept putting my name on the mailbox and the Post man kept putting vacant. I started  
getting them in July and did have the vehicle moved. It is a tenant’s vehicle and I’d  
frankly like some advice on dealing with that situation. That car is moved now. I guess  
in the tenant’s defense he says there are current tabs paid on it. I don’t want it there  
and tried to get it off in a timely fashion once I received the assessments. There is  
$1,200 worth of assessments for this car alone.  
Moermond: you closed April 19, and original orders went out April 13.  
Prescott: that’s probably right. I wasn’t able to physically go to the property until early  
May. I immediately cleaned up the trash. I didn’t realize the car was an issue until July.  
Moermond: I take it these weren’t disclosed at the closing in April?  
Prescott: they were not. As I took possession things really hit the fan it seems like.  
I’m doing the best I can to deal with it to make things run smoother.  
Moermond: we have a fourplex here. It was incumbent upon the seller to disclose any  
pending orders on the property. They probably checked a box indicating they disclosed  
pending orders. These did exist at that time. That part of it is definitely a private matter  
between you and the seller and getting the seller to own the responsibility for this.  
Prescott: in my defense, you don’t have much communication with the seller. It is  
November now; he was an out of state landlord who clearly had issues with the  
property.  
Moermond: were you represented by a realtor?  
Prescott: I was.  
Moermond: we can send you these orders issued to the previous owner. That is  
something you and your realtor can communicate.  
Prescott: there are a couple more coming up. I’m trying to do my part. I wish I would  
have received notification sooner than July regarding that. Then I have these tenant  
issues.  
Martin: this place has been there for some time without plates, in operable. We didn’t  
get this closed out until September 21. It was there since April. I’m glad he’s taken  
control. Our inspectors have spent a lot of time on this  
Moermond: the City sent notice to the proper legal owner when orders were issued. As  
soon as the address was updated with the County you began to get notification as well.  
That takes a couple of months. Again, the responsible party for disclosing these  
orders lies with the seller and that is a private matter between the two of you. The  
condition existed, notice was provided to correct legal party, and they continued to  
exist for a long time. I hate to say it, but you bought a property with some history of  
Code issues and this is part of the cleanup on it. I have notes from staff that since  
2018 it has had more than 10 orders every single year.  
Prescott: I’m not surprised.  
Moermond: that’s 40 orders in 4 years. The seller should have been hyper aware of  
things going on and been disclosing them. I’m thinking you, as the owner, are  
responsible for the assessment. The extent to which the assessments happened prior  
to you receiving notification to the bills you would have to work out with the seller.  
Assessments prior to the bills lie with you. I’m inclined to recommend approval of  
these assessments. I encourage you to reach back with the tools you have to have the  
seller accountable.  
Prescott: ok. That’s fine. All I can say is you probably won’t hear from me in the future.  
Moermond: I am glad to hear that. I’m sorry I couldn’t be more helpful today.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/11/2023  
8
RLH TA 22-380  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 277  
AURORA AVENUE. (File No. J2302E, Assessment No. 238301)  
Balenger  
Sponsors:  
Approve the assessment.  
Joe Prescott, owner, appeared via phone  
[Moermond gives background of appeals process]  
Moermond: we have two assessments, one for activity in May up to May 23, and May  
23 through June 21. We’ll talk about the first one and then the second. The first  
assessment includes four separate bills.  
Staff report by Supervisor Lisa Martin: the date of the orders was April 13, 2022,  
noncompliance with Excessive Consumption’s issued April 28, May 4, May 6, and May  
17 2022. Work was done September 21 by owner. Several work orders at the issues.  
Literally too many orders to list, 10 or so a year since 2018. Total proposed  
assessment of $531. Photos are attached to the file.  
Moermond: so we have a vehicle order and a Summary Abatement Order? The vehicle  
order was April 13. When was the cleanup issued?  
Martin: April 13, for cleanup of garbage.  
Moermond: the inspector to clean up the garbage revisited April 28 and it wasn’t done,  
so we issued a bill instead of sending a crew, for $122 vs. the larger cost of cleanup.  
Went back May 4. Another bill. We have 2 other bills in that period and those two  
Excessive Consumption bills. A bill May 6 for not having the vehicle dealt with and May  
17 for not having garbage done with. That’s what leads to this large assessment. It  
sounds like you may be the tenant?  
Prescott: these are all in my name to pay now, I didn’t own the property at this point. I  
bought it the end of April. I wasn’t able to enter the property until May. All of these, I  
kept putting my name on the mailbox and the Post man kept putting vacant. I started  
getting them in July and did have the vehicle moved. It is a tenant’s vehicle and I’d  
frankly like some advice on dealing with that situation. That car is moved now. I guess  
in the tenant’s defense he says there are current tabs paid on it. I don’t want it there  
and tried to get it off in a timely fashion once I received the assessments. There is  
$1,200 worth of assessments for this car alone.  
Moermond: you closed April 19, and original orders went out April 13.  
Prescott: that’s probably right. I wasn’t able to physically go to the property until early  
May. I immediately cleaned up the trash. I didn’t realize the car was an issue until July.  
Moermond: I take it these weren’t disclosed at the closing in April?  
Prescott: they were not. As I took possession things really hit the fan it seems like.  
I’m doing the best I can to deal with it to make things run smoother.  
Moermond: we have a fourplex here. It was incumbent upon the seller to disclose any  
pending orders on the property. They probably checked a box indicating they disclosed  
pending orders. These did exist at that time. That part of it is definitely a private matter  
between you and the seller and getting the seller to own the responsibility for this.  
Prescott: in my defense, you don’t have much communication with the seller. It is  
November now; he was an out of state landlord who clearly had issues with the  
property.  
Moermond: were you represented by a realtor?  
Prescott: I was.  
Moermond: we can send you these orders issued to the previous owner. That is  
something you and your realtor can communicate.  
Prescott: there are a couple more coming up. I’m trying to do my part. I wish I would  
have received notification sooner than July regarding that. Then I have these tenant  
issues.  
Martin: this place has been there for some time without plates, in operable. We didn’t  
get this closed out until September 21. It was there since April. I’m glad he’s taken  
control. Our inspectors have spent a lot of time on this  
Moermond: the City sent notice to the proper legal owner when orders were issued. As  
soon as the address was updated with the County you began to get notification as well.  
That takes a couple of months. Again, the responsible party for disclosing these  
orders lies with the seller and that is a private matter between the two of you. The  
condition existed, notice was provided to correct legal party, and they continued to  
exist for a long time. I hate to say it, but you bought a property with some history of  
Code issues and this is part of the cleanup on it. I have notes from staff that since  
2018 it has had more than 10 orders every single year.  
Prescott: I’m not surprised.  
Moermond: that’s 40 orders in 4 years. The seller should have been hyper aware of  
things going on and been disclosing them. I’m thinking you, as the owner, are  
responsible for the assessment. The extent to which the assessments happened prior  
to you receiving notification to the bills you would have to work out with the seller.  
Assessments prior to the bills lie with you. I’m inclined to recommend approval of  
these assessments. I encourage you to reach back with the tools you have to have the  
seller accountable.  
Prescott: ok. That’s fine. All I can say is you probably won’t hear from me in the future.  
Moermond: I am glad to hear that. I’m sorry I couldn’t be more helpful today.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/25/2023  
9
RLH TA 22-366  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 928  
FLANDRAU STREET. (File No. J2301E, Assessment No. 238300)  
Yang  
Sponsors:  
Approve the assessment.  
Zamzam Anshur, owner, appeared via phone  
Interpreter from Language Line appeared via phone  
[Moermond gives background of appeals process]  
Anshur: I just got the paper and I don’t know what it is, I just want you to tell me what it  
is.  
Moermond gave staff report: April 29, 2022 a Summary Abatement Order was issued  
to remove a door that was propped against the garage that looked like garbage. You  
were given to May 9th to remove it and it wasn’t removed by deadline. At that point the  
inspector can decide whether to issue a bill to pay for the trip or call out a work crew to  
remove the door. The inspector decided to issue a bill for his trip versus the larger cost  
of calling out a crew. It was gone when rechecked May 24. I see there have been 3  
letters sent, do you understand the orders sent by the City? I’m wondering since you  
have had several orders the last few years and I don’t know why. I’m wondering if you  
have someone to read the orders to you since you don’t understand English?  
Anshur: I got the paper but I didn’t understand why and how much it would cost.  
Moermond: the cost was originally $124. When it was processed as an assessment a  
$35 service charge was added so the total assessment today was $139.  
Anshur: I saw the $159. I would have paid it off, but when I called they said it was  
$700. I’m confused.  
Moermond: we’ll check to see about other pending assessments. It looks like there  
was an assessment levied on the property September 7, 2022 for $586. That was for a  
cleanup. That assessment wasn’t appealed like the one today was.  
Anshur: what is that for exactly?  
Moermond: a property cleanup that would have happened in the first two weeks of  
March, 2022.  
Anshur: I bought the property in March but didn’t move in until May.  
Moermond: for the cleanup that was done April 12, there was a large pile of garbage  
outside the garage. That letter was addressed to you at this address. It was sent April  
1, and the crew did the work April 12. That’s why the expense for this cleanup. I  
understand you may not have moved in at this point. I see you closed on the property  
February 22. The notice did go to you at your address of record.  
Anshur: so the $500 is for the large garbage pile?  
Moermond: that is correct. Because the work wasn’t done on time and it was the  
second violation in such a short period of time, I’m going to recommend the Council  
approve this assessment.  
Anshur: how much do I owe? Because I can pay this one but the other one is a lot of  
money.  
Moermond: I can ask the Council to make that payable over 3 years if that is helpful.  
You would pay one-third every year for 3 years.  
Anshur: ok. How do I pay it?  
Moermond: we can send a link to your email.  
[Note: no follow - up email sent as assessment had already been paid prior to sending  
the email - JZ 11/17/22]  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/11/2023  
10  
RLH TA 22-382  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 1374  
ARLINGTON AVENUE WEST/ 1437 SHELDON STREET. (File No.  
J2034A, Assessment No. 238503)  
Jalali  
Sponsors:  
Approve the assessment.  
Alex McLane, owner, appeared via phone  
[Moermond gives background of appeals process]  
Staff report by Supervisor Lisa Martin: this was a Summary Abatement Order notice to  
cut tall grass and weeds issued July 13, 2022 to owner and occupant. We did a  
reinspection on July 17; it was not done. It was done July 21, 2022. We do have before  
and after videos. Total assessment of $322.  
McLane: that seems quite expensive to cut tall grass with a trimmer.  
Moermond: so the first thing is it is expensive. Tell me more.  
McLane: I don’t think this was carried out properly. The grass was around 8 inches on  
the boulevard and side hill. We had a drought this summer so I was growing it out so  
the turf grass would be deeper and have a better chance of surviving. Unfortunately,  
this was shaved down to the bare minimum. Much lower than a healthy grass length.  
Choosing to cut the grass was a mistake and was not helpful for the turf grass health  
in general. Right now I am dealing with dead grass.  
Moermond: I would disagree when I see the videos and photos, it is easily a foot tall  
and has definitely gone to seed. It is largely yellow. I think if you would have made an  
effort to reduce it that may have helped. I think lawn care professionals I do think  
agree it is better to keep grass taller in dry weather. I don’t think they mean this tall. I  
usually hear 4 to 6 inches. I didn’t get an appeal of this order--  
McLane: can I ask a question about the length? When you say over a foot tall are you  
describing the longest of the blades or just the average of all the turf grass combined?  
Moermond: I am looking at a photo of a clip board being held on the ground and the  
grass being several inches taller than the clip board. The clip board is 12 inches tall.  
The grass exceeds that. That area appears to include about 2 square yards. Then  
there are photos of a larger area that mirror that.  
McLane: I’m not sure if the picture is showing the average of all grass blades within the  
clip board? Or just the tallest?  
Moermond: they don’t measure all the individual grass blades. Are you asking them to  
measure all the individual grass blades, sir?  
McLane: are you describing it is over 8 inches tall based on a couple of grass blades  
among the average of the turf? Or just because you see one grass blade over 8 inches  
so you are describing “the grass”, as in all the blades are over 8 inches?  
Moermond: without counting I see hundreds of grass blades over the height of the clip  
board.  
McLane: is that over the average of grass blades cut during this visit?  
Moermond: this area I am looking at was cut during the visit. The hundreds are in the 2  
square yard area where I have high level of focus in the photo.  
McLane: I’m just not sure if the code enforcement was based on the average of grass  
blades or the number of blades over the 8” limit.  
Moermond: I see the grass at the property being well over a foot tall for the entire front  
area that was mowed. Certainly, the Council could look at this differently. In my  
assessment the order was correctly issued and the action taken was appropriate to  
reduce the grass height. You had the opportunity to decrease the height of the grass or  
water it to keep it healthy. I know it hasn’t rained in September and October.  
Martin: I just want to note there is an open file with 6 pending Excessive Consumptions  
for excavation with no explanation. We’ve issued orders for noncompliance. We have  
quite a bit coming forward.  
McLane: I’m sorry but where is the explanation needed for excavation? Is there an  
amount of dirt that is needed to inform the City of an excavation? What if the  
excavation is related to the structural integrity of the property? This is only 10 years I’ve  
had this lawn and property, and the house is over 100 years old. I believe what I am  
doing is for the benefit of the property long-term. This “extensive consumption” is  
based on unclarified bias being implemented on the City code.  
Moermond: the answer to your question is embedded in your statement you just made  
pertaining the excavation related to structural stability of the building which would  
automatically require a building permit. Additional questions on when permits are  
required I would direct you to the City’s senior building inspector Nathan Bruhn.  
McLane: I have a private building inspector who told me the grade of the building was  
wrong. You are telling me I need to have a permit to correct it rather than correcting it  
before winter and the massive snow melts and rainstorms that will flood the basement  
and make the entire building moldy and must. You are telling me I need a City permit  
to correct that?  
Moermond: when you said it had to do with the foundation and you’ve dug out areas of  
the foundation that appears to be the case. I was referring you to the senior building  
inspector for his professional advice. This was not in front of me this morning. I gather  
Ms. Martin brought it up as an informational point.  
McLane: I have a private sector inspector. I don’t know why I would need a City  
inspector to tell me what a private inspector told me in October of 2020.  
Moermond: your private inspector should know that if they need a permit. You may  
have double fees unless you proactively approach this. I am not going to give the final  
answer on whether you need one. I do believe you do. The person to answer that best  
is Nathan Bruhn. We have your email and we will send you his contact information so  
you can confirm what is required for the work you are doing.  
McLane: in the meantime, can I structurally improve—  
Moermond: this is not in front of me this morning. It makes sense to do follow up on it.  
I’ve given you contact information. With respect to what is in front of me I will  
recommend approval of that assessment. You can testify in front of Council or provide  
additional information. Information is how to do so on the notification of this hearing  
you receive.  
McLane: can the City Council issue me a credit for the damage done to the turf grass  
this summer?  
Moermond: no, you would have to file a claim against the City for damage you believe  
done by City action. What is in front of Council is the charge for the nuisance  
abatement. You can find that claim form on the City Clerk’s website. Other questions?  
McLane: I don’t have questions at this time. I do know that the City Code requires an  
8-inch grass limit. I’m wondering if that applies to every grass blade, the average, or  
individual blades that exceed the 8-inch limit.  
Moermond: my recommendation to the Council is that you are substantially out of  
compliance. They may interpret the evidence differently. That is the next level.  
Anything else?  
McLane: I do not have anything else at this time and I am not going to pay this invoice  
because I do not believe that the average number of grass blades exceeded 8 inches.  
Moermond: so that you are clear, this will become an assessment onto your taxes if it  
is approved by the Council. That is how that works. Your public hearing is January 18.  
Have a good rest of the day.  
McLane: I think it is an unfortunate recommendation that you have come to today.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/18/2023  
11  
RLH TA 22-381  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 1393  
PROSPERITY AVENUE. (File No. J2304A, Assessment No. 238503)  
Yang  
Sponsors:  
Approve the assessment.  
Hussein Abdullahi, owner, appeared via phone  
[Moermond gives background of appeals process]  
Staff report by Supervisor Lisa Martin: June 27 orders were issued to occupant and  
owner to remove couch and refuse from behind building. Compliance date of July 5.  
Rechecked July 7. Work was done July 11. There is a large history here. Photos and  
videos showing the cleanup.  
Moermond: why are you appealing?  
Abdullahi: I have this history with Summary Abatement Order and I do take them  
seriously. I knew the gravity of the situation when we were getting those letters. I know  
why the City does what they do. The issue is the tenant was moving into the unit and  
they couldn’t get the black couch in. I was communicating with them even before the  
letter was sent. I told them the City would clean it up and it would cost a lot. I also  
know they can put it on the curb and I can get Aspen to pick it up. The tenant was  
insisting that their family was going to take it and that they had recently purchased it. I  
genuinely was proactively trying to mitigate and handle the issue. The tenant wasn’t  
aware of the gravity of the situation even though I constantly reminded them of it. I’m  
not asking for the fee to be deleted, just reduced. We could have done something  
differently, I know. I know the City did it and did reminders.  
Moermond: you live there?  
Abdullahi: we recently moved out.  
Moermond: I have to say that there have been so many orders on the property that you  
would have understood exactly what the order required and didn’t comply with it. The  
deadline was a 10-day window between orders and compliance date, and work wasn’t  
done until 4 days after that. A full 2 weeks. I’m not incline for it to be reduced. There  
was a cost and it isn’t the first time. I’ll recommend approval but the Council may look  
at it differently.  
Abdullahi: that’s ok. I understand. It is what it is.  
Moermond: we’ll send you the form to update for the Certificate of Occupancy program  
so they have your contact information.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/18/2023  
12  
RLH TA 22-396  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 981  
UNIVERSITY AVENUE WEST. (File No. J2301P, Assessment No.  
238400)  
Balenger  
Sponsors:  
Delete the assessment (waiver on file).  
No one appeared  
Moermond: we are deleting the assessment for graffiti cleanup because a waiver is one  
file for this but assessment was processed anyway.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/25/2023  
13  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 615  
REANEY AVENUE. (File No. VB2301, Assessment No. 238800)  
Brendmoen  
Sponsors:  
Layover to LH January 3, 2023 at 9 am to see permit status for possible proration of  
fee. (CPH Jan 11, 2023)  
John Schoenfelder, owner, appeared via phone  
[Moermond gives background of appeals process]  
Staff report by Supervisor Lisa Martin: this was the cost of the Vacant Building  
registration. Revoked in 2019. Total proposed assessment of $2,616. Letter sent May  
6, warning letter June 6.  
Moermond: I have the file being opened May 5, 2022. I think the one you mentioned  
was prior and closed.  
Schoenfelder: I am not a professional landlord. I bought this many years ago now. I  
had it for a while, moved out when I married, rented it since 2004 or 2005. 3 years ago,  
I had Renter’s Warehouse take over. We had a Section 8 gal in the lower level. I  
managed the apartment upstairs. I have never been through this process before.  
We’ve had inspectors in, do the repairs, and move forward. This process of not getting  
in and losing the Certificate of Occupancy. This is new for me and I didn’t know the  
options. Back in May we were trying to get in and due to Covid we didn’t have a lot of  
access. Both lower and upstairs were hoarders. Completely full. It took two and a half  
dumpsters. It’s a 700 square foot apartment upstairs. No way to do the inspections or  
repairs. It was limited during Covid and we couldn’t evict. All I could do was send  
letters and requests. I think we lost the Certificate because the inspector couldn’t get  
in upstairs. These people finally left in July and we were able to clean out the upstairs  
and do the repairs. That’s where things are at. I didn’t know I had the option to appeal  
in June. Just unaware and I’m sorry about that. I have a job I go to every day and I this  
is very much a part time thing. I’m asking the Council to un-revoke the Certificate of  
Occupancy so I can rent it again.  
Moermond: why didn’t you appeal that then? I am not sure you are interpreting Covid  
restrictions appropriately, but that is kind of water under the bridge  
Schoenfelder: is it though? Because I’m still dealing with it.  
Moermond: what I have in front of me is the fee for being a registered Vacant Building  
since May 2022 which is well after those restrictions expired. You could have gotten  
advice on how to deal with it but you knew you had a hoarder upstairs. The  
appointment letters were over a course of six months. It started November 2021 and it  
wasn’t revoked until May 3, 2022. That ordered the property vacated. That is quite a  
long time to be in that process. It does appear the revocation facilitated getting the  
tenants out. At this point the main question is whether or not you are required to have  
the full Code Compliance Inspection or whether a Certificate of Occupancy inspection  
would suffice to make it rentable again. Under the Code orders as they were written  
you are a Category 2 Vacant Building which means you need the Code Compliance  
Inspection Report generated. It appears that hasn’t been done?  
Schoenfelder: I called for that and was told by Inspector Thomas that he wasn’t  
involved in that and that Matt Dornfeld would get it. Dornfeld said Thomas was the  
inspector. I kept getting transferred back and forth. It isn’t a simple process for  
someone who doesn’t deal with it every day. I’ve tried multiple times to get the  
paperwork to do the inspection.  
Martin: back in 2004 we had a complaint the owner never lived at the property. The first  
Certificate of Occupancy was in 2007. There is a huge history and tons of letter. He’s  
had since 2004 dealing with Fire Inspections. This is a Category 2 Vacant Building.  
Moermond: it sounds like you’ve been working on it to address the issues in the Fire  
Certificate of Occupancy letter. It looks like a couple of these orders would need a  
permit.  
Schoenfelder: that was done under permit. I confirmed with the inspection office that  
was done.  
Moermond: there is the dryer issue.  
Schoenfelder: they aren’t usable. The tenant’s destroyed them. Easiest fix is to remove  
it but the coin operator doesn’t work.  
Moermond: the Vacant Building fee is in play and appropriate. Nothing was appealed.  
So here we are six months into the billable year. May 2022 through 2023. I’m struggling  
with you not understanding the process. Usually, the Vacant Building registration is a  
catalyst for action because of the fee.  
Schoenfelder: again. I don’t have a lot of background in this. I didn’t know you could  
appeal. To me appealing means I could remedy it and we could forgo it, which I wasn’t  
able to do.  
Moermond: it says you may file an appeal to this fee. It doesn’t say anything about  
having taken care of the Code issues. The question of whether a Code Compliance  
Inspection is required, I don’t have Fire Certificate of Occupancy people on the line  
which I would look for.  
Martin: because of its long history I would recommend that it needs a Code  
Compliance Inspection.  
Moermond: I am inclined to agree especially since an inspector hasn’t even laid eyes  
on the upstairs unit. I would look at prorating this if you have your Code Compliance  
Certificate issued by that date. I’ll look at this January 3 so we have current  
information on it. Get on top of these inspections you’ve known about since May.  
Laid Over to the Legislative Hearings due back on 1/3/2023  
14  
RLH TA 22-406  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 1671  
UNIVERSITY AVENUE WEST. (File No. J2301P, Assessment No.  
238400)  
Jalali  
Sponsors:  
Delete the assessment (wavier on file).  
No one appeared  
Moermond: we are deleting the assessment for graffiti cleanup because a waiver is one  
file for this but an assessment was processed anyways.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/25/2023  
Special Tax Assessments-ROLLS  
15  
RLH AR 22-99  
Ratifying the assessments for Collection of Vacant Building Registration  
fees billed during January 10 to June 20, 2022. (File No. VB2302,  
Assessment No. 238801)  
Brendmoen  
Sponsors:  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/25/2023  
16  
17  
RLH AR  
22-100  
Ratifying the assessments for Securing and/or Emergency Boarding  
services during July 2022. (File No. J2302B, Assessment No. 238101)  
Brendmoen  
Sponsors:  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/25/2023  
RLH AR  
22-101  
Ratifying the assessments for Collection of Fire Certificate of Occupancy  
fees billed during August 6, 2021 to June 20, 2022. (File No. CRT2302,  
Assessment No. 238201)  
Brendmoen  
Sponsors:  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/25/2023  
18  
RLH AR  
22-102  
Ratifying the assessments for Excessive Use of Inspection or Abatement  
services billed during May 23 to June 21, 2022. (File No. J2302E,  
Assessment No. 238301)  
Brendmoen  
Sponsors:  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/25/2023  
19  
RLH AR  
22-103  
Ratifying the assessments for Graffiti Removal services during June 23 to  
August 10, 2022. (File No. J2301P, Assessment No. 238400)  
Brendmoen  
Sponsors:  
Referred to the City Council due back on 1/25/2023  
11:00 a.m. Hearings  
Summary & Vehicle Abatement Orders  
20  
RLH SAO  
22-48  
Appeal of Daniel Feess to a Vehicle Abatement Order at 952 EUCLID  
STREET.  
Prince  
Sponsors:  
Layover to LH Nov 8, 2023 at 11 am. Staff to measure vehicle/trailer and distance from  
buildings/ROW/lot lines.  
Daniel Feess, owner, appeared  
[Moermond gives background of appeals process]  
Staff report by Supervisor Lisa Martin: October 10, 2022 a Vehicle Abatement Order  
was issued to owner and occupant at this address. Trailer with no plates. It looks more  
like a jobsite trailer. It is on wheels. No plates. A rolling office.  
Moermond: tell me about what is going on?  
Feess: I purchased it with the intent to convert it into a fish house to use up north. I  
need time to condition it. Then I will be moving it. I don’t know if I need to get it plated  
as an RV. I haven’t looked into that process yet.  
Moermond: in terms of this being a vehicle, tell me about your conclusion. I guess I  
may have called it as mobile home, trailer home.  
Martin: it does look like a trailer home but because it is on wheels we listed it as a  
vehicle. It is oversized and wouldn’t be allowed in a residential neighborhood.  
Feess: it isn’t permanent. My goal was to have it done by May 30, my wife’s birthday. I  
just need time to convert it and then I’ll be moving it in the spring. Is there a variance  
or something available to me? It would help me out tremendously.  
Moermond: are we in code section 167?  
Martin: 151.02.  
Feess: I don’t know it is overweight.  
Moermond: commercial vehicle shall include any bus or commercial truck, as herein  
defined, or any vehicle designed or modified to serve purposes other than the  
transportation of persons or as licensed under Chapter 158. A commercial vehicle shall  
not include public utility vehicles, authorized emergency vehicles and/or those vehicles  
currently owned and operated by federal, state, and local governmental subdivisions.  
Feess: it isn’t a bus. I want to make it into an RV and tag it as such.  
Moermond: do you have measurements on this Ms. Martin?  
Martin: I do not.  
Feess: my neighbors are ok with it and understand my plans.  
Moermond: it does qualify as an overweight vehicle. Any vehicle, with or without load,  
which weighs more than six thousand (6,000) pounds or is registered for a gross weight  
of more than nine thousand (9,000) pounds or is greater than twenty-two (22) feet in  
length and/or seven and one-half (7½) feet in height. This definition includes but is not  
limited to semi-trailers, tow trucks, buses, limousines, tractors, construction  
equipment or similar vehicles. This definition excludes licensed, operable recreational  
vehicles (RV's).  
Feess: so shorter RV’s can be on residential properties  
Moermond: storage of RV’s are ok as long as they’re on a legal parking surface. I am a  
little concerned that this isn’t mentioned, but it looks like it may encroach on the  
public right-of-way.  
Feess: that is incorrect.  
Moermond: just from the photos it appears the asphalt is dry under the trailer. The  
asphalt is wet. So the trailer is covering part of the alley.  
Feess: the inspector didn’t have an issue with its positioning.  
Moermond: he didn’t write orders.  
Feess: is there a possibility to grant me some time?  
Moermond: you want all the way to May and that isn’t going to happen. I’m not crazy  
about the positioning of it.  
Feess: my neighbors are ok with it and it doesn’t impede the alley.  
Moermond: you can’t encroach on the alley either. The photo shows that it does.  
Feess: it is an optical illusion ma’am. I’m not lying to you.  
Moermond: I understand.  
Martin: no vehicle should be parked in an alley within 5 feet from any driveway or  
garage entrance.  
Moermond: ok.  
Feess: I just need some time and I don’t see it as a kind of hindrance. My neighbors  
have all checked in. It would really help me and my family to do this. It is hard for me  
to impart the importance of me being able to do this as part of running my life. It will  
allow me to get some stuff out of my house and go up north. I never intended it to be  
permanent.  
Moermond: can you get staff out to take photos of where it exactly is positioned and its  
distances from structures and property lines and I’d like measurements of the length,  
height, and width. I’ll lay this over for a week to get that information before giving a  
recommendation.  
Feess: as far as working with me on this what is your initial thought?  
Moermond: I don’t want to say anything without all of the facts and information in front  
of me. I don’t want to give a preliminary conclusion based on new facts.  
Laid Over to the Legislative Hearings due back on 11/8/2022  
Making Finding on Nuisance Abatements  
21  
Making finding on the appealed nuisance abatement ordered for 913  
JOHNSON PARKWAY in Council File RLH SAO 22-47.  
Yang  
Sponsors:  
The nuisance is not abated.  
Joseph Dalbec, owner, appeared via phone  
Moermond: as you know the purpose of today’s hearing was to determine whether or  
not the property was cleaned up and get that information to the Council for their  
consideration next Wednesday. It was to be cleaned up by October 25. Inspectors  
went by to check on in.  
Staff update by Supervisor Lisa Martin: they have made a small attempt to get things  
done. It is still quite a mess. Someone working on a vehicle. Not in compliance  
Dalbec: the vehicle is gone now. I’ve cleaned up the alley. I’m picking up the back  
yard.  
Moermond: the answer to whether it was done by October 25. You are saying it is  
close now. They will look at this November 9. I will tell them no it wasn’t done so they  
can authorize a crew to go out November 10 to clean up what remains. If it is done by  
then that means there is no work for the crew to do, which is good for you. You are  
getting a couple extra weeks beyond your deadline. Ms. Martin, can you send an  
inspector out the morning of November 9.  
Dalbec: everything should be done; it is nice weather.  
Moermond: that sounds good. Ms. Martin?  
Martin: yes, we will go take a look.  
Moermond: then the Council will have up to date information on whether to send a crew  
out or not.  
Dalbec: as long as we keep at it I don’t see why there should be a problem  
Moermond: well, you have until close of business November 8, or the City will finish the  
job.  
Dalbec: I don’t want that to happen.  
Moermond: this goes to Council next Wednesday at 3:30. We will send you a follow-up  
letter.  
Dalbec: yes, so I know what is going on.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 11/9/2022  
1:00 p.m. Hearings  
Vacant Building Registrations  
22  
Appeal of Elizabeth Klimmek (Sibet), representing Sibet Renovations  
LLC, to a Vacant Building Registration Notice at 227 FULLER AVENUE.  
Balenger  
Sponsors:  
Grant the appeal and release the property from the VB program.  
Elizabeth Klimmek (Sibet), owner of Sibet Renovations, LLC, appeared via phone  
Moermond: we’re following up on the materials you provided to demonstrate you are an  
owner occupant of the property. I’ve seen your emails and I will ask staff for feedback  
and we’ll talk to you about anything of concern and come to a conclusion today.  
Supervisor Mitch Imbertson: based on the documentation provided I think we are  
seeing evidence the appellant does live at the property and claiming it as a primary  
residence. The concern is that the property is still owned by the LLC. I don’t know the  
ownership of the LLC itself, but we wouldn’t typically consider property as  
owner-occupied when it is owned by a company, even if the resident of the property is  
associated with the same company.  
Moermond: I am satisfied you have moved in there. What Mr. Imbertson was talking  
about, how the property is owned by an LLC rather than specifically by you. The  
question then being can you be an owner occupant of a property owned by an LLC,  
even if it is your LLC. That’s a distinct entity owning the property. The Fire Certificate of  
Occupancy program normally requires there be a change in ownership registered with  
the County Recorder’s office to reflect you are the owner rather than the corporation.  
Are there any outstanding Fire Orders that would be transferred to code or would the  
file be closed? Mr. Imbertson perhaps you can be of assistance in this?  
Imbertson: I do not see anything we would be referring to Code.  
Moermond: so, the file would be closed. I will grant the appeal, and give that  
recommendation to the City Council, of the Vacant Building registration and with  
respect to the Fire Certificate of Occupancy program, that can be effectuated by  
getting the building ownership transferred from the LLC to your name. A 90-day window  
should suffice. Is that doable?  
Sibet: I’m sorry, I’ve been in a long divorce process for 2.5 years so I owned 2 more  
properties under the LLC. I live in Minneapolis and Maple grove. I forgot that causes  
those issues. The trial is scheduled for February, but could still be extended another  
six months. That’s my only concern. Within 90 days is ambitious because the trial isn’t  
within 90 days. With the City employee that went there when John lived there, my  
cousin I understood I can I be renter under Sibet, LLC, even though I am the exclusive  
president?  
Moermond: of course, yes. You would become the Fire CFO responsible party on  
behalf of the corporation. You’d have to schedule a follow up inspection. That isn’t a  
problem. We will get you out if the Vacant Building program.  
Moermond: How would you like them to make a connection, Ms. Klimmek and the  
inspector?  
Imbertson: if we can reach you at this same contact information that we have for the  
appeal, I will pass this along to the area inspector.  
Moermond: Who Would that be?  
Imbertson: Grant Heitman  
Moermond: You would be hearing from Grant Heitman. Who is the fire inspector in that  
area. Your appeal is granted on the Vacant Building registration. Anything else we can  
help with today?  
Sibet: take care.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 11/16/2022  
23  
Appeal of Desta Foghe, Longano Housing LLC, to a Vacant Building  
Registration Renewal Notice at 373 NEBRASKA AVENUE WEST.  
Brendmoen  
Sponsors:  
Waive VB fee for 90 days (to January 29, 2023).  
Desta Foghe, owner Longano Housing, LLC, appeared via phone  
Matt Dornfeld, Vacant Building Program Supervisor, DSI  
Mitch Imbertson, Fire Certificate of Occupancy Program Supervisor, DSI  
[Moermond provided background on appeals process]  
Staff report by Supervisor Matt Dornfeld: made a Category 2 Vacant Building back in  
October of 2018. As of this April 13, 2022 a Langdano Housing LLC went through sale  
review and was approved. We do have a Code Compliance Inspection and all trades  
permits on file. As of yesterday one note that according to Inspector Whisker he noted  
a kitchen hood duct was installed to the outside of the house by an unlicensed HVAC  
contractor. May be some penalties or double fees there.  
Moermond: sounds like you are close to being done?  
Foghe: HVAC inspections, mechanical and hot air need to finish. There was an old  
kitchen hood in the house. I didn’t understand, I thought I had to buy another one and  
use the same hole and openings. I didn’t know it was a want, not a need. No HVAC  
company is coming to fix that little thing the HVAC inspector was demanding. I tried  
everyone, 5 or 6 companies. They were not willing to do such a small job for me. I  
could have even avoided it but I didn’t know I could do that. I am almost done. That is  
what is holding me up from finishing. I’m going to remove the hood to finish the  
inspection.  
Moermond: people in your circumstance, who have done with an unlicensed contractor,  
and then seek out another contractor to do the work under permit sometimes have  
problems.That does happen from time to time. I’m hearing that it won’t take very long  
to get this taken care of?  
Foghe: one month is what I’m looking for. It won’t take that long to do the work but it  
takes time to find a contractor.  
Moermond: of course. The renewal date of your Vacant Building fee is October 29, so  
this is October 29 2022 through 2023. I’ll put a 90-day fee waiver in place, through  
January 29, 2023, and by that point you should have found a contractor and gotten  
your permits sign offs. If done by then, there will be no Vacant Building fee on the  
property. Will that be sufficient?  
Foghe: that would be unbelievable.  
Moermond: if he has any questions about the permitting for this vent, who is the senior  
inspector he should talk to in the trades area?  
Imbertson: Chris Whisker is who noted it, one of our ventilation inspectors but if he  
cannot speak to Chris directly he can speak to Gary Reinsberg.  
Moermond: We’ll send an email including the recommendation from today and contact  
information for those people so you can follow up with them about specifics.  
Foghe: I spoke to him this morning and he gave me two options. We are in agreement.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 11/16/2022  
1:30 p.m. Hearings  
Orders To Vacate - Fire Certificate of Occupancy  
24  
Appeal of Atnafu Yeshidagne to a Revocation of Fire Certificate of  
Occupancy and Order to Vacate at 510 SNELLING AVENUE NORTH.  
Jalali  
Sponsors:  
Layover Dec 6, 2022 at 1:30 p.m. to discuss preliminary work plan.  
Atnafu Yeshidagne appeared  
Menderen Gebreisadik appeared but did not speak  
Abay Gebre appeared but did not speak  
Ben Johnson, NDC, appeared  
Sarah O’Brien, Hamline Midway Coalition, appeared via phone  
Moermond: we had a hearing last week and talked a lot about the repairs at the  
property, a lot of which had permits that weren’t pulled. What was necessary to right  
the ship there. We talked about the restaurant being closed for long-term  
noncompliance with the Fire Certificate of Occupancy orders. The idea of the hearing  
today was to begin a plan to right the ship and get the corrections made within a  
schedule we agree on so the restaurant can remain open, become code compliant, get  
the money to do so. I made the recommendation the restaurant be allowed to operate  
for a month while we put together this plan. My expectation is not that the repairs get  
done in this month, but that we have a plan in place so we have a way to wrap our arms  
around expectations and can follow up on specifics. That’s the goal of this  
conversation. I don’t think we will conclude a plan today, but that we would be trying to  
set parameters around which that plan would be built. We have a conversation about  
what that plan could and should include and that gets developed and put in writing by  
you so you have a written proposal the Council can react to. Staff will review it and give  
feedback and we put together something that makes sense. We agreed we were  
operating in good faith last week. I know these aren’t cheap repairs and also  
understanding how Covid has impacted the restaurant industry.  
Staff update by Supervisor James Perucca: following up from last week, inspector  
Huseby was going to collect invoices from past work done to help determine whether or  
not permits were needed for the work pointed out in the revocation orders. Whether  
permits and inspections were still needed. She did receive two invoices for the  
property. One from Paul Bunyan plumbing for installation of gas commercial  
equipment. It doesn’t appear all orders were complete. The cable restraints are still  
needed. We still need a permit. There was a gas plumbing permit pulled but it shows  
as abandoned for the same time of work.  
Moermond: pulled by the same party?  
Perucca: yes. Same contractor.  
Moermond: so they went online, tried to pull it, and it ended up as abandoned.  
Perucca: still needs permit, still needs inspection. This was done October 27. The  
second invoice is a proposal from Empire Door and Glass regarding exterior front glass  
door. Proposal for labor and materials dated October 25. No permit for that, it would  
require one for the building inspector to confirm glass and installation are correct.  
Moermond: what is the cost of the Paul Bunyan work and then Empire?  
Perucca: Paul Bunyan is for $297. The glass is $293.72. Those are the two received  
by Inspector Huseby. In reviewing the revocation orders, we do have a building permit  
under the 506 Snelling address or replacing sheetrock and repairing floor in grocery  
unit. This is active and goes back to October 12. One of the deficiencies is that some  
electrical work was covered by the wall repair and still needs to be inspected.  
Moermond: it needs a rough in, so sheetrock may need to come down.  
Perucca: yes.  
Moermond: the big-ticket items?  
Perucca: the ventilation system, I didn’t get any paperwork on that. It all would require  
permits for repairs.  
Moermond: I know you’ve been wrestling with the big items. Sounds like smaller things  
are started. Where are you at with what it will cost? Any funding sources? Those are  
big questions.  
Yeshidagne: the door was broken by someone; you have the receipt to fix it and we  
have brand new glass.  
Perucca: you still need permit. It is an assembly, and being an exit door, it requires  
the tempered glass. It does require a permit.  
Johnson: if the invoice says it is tempered?  
Perucca: no, someone has to put eyes on it.  
Johnson: I thought if a door was replaced it needs a permit but didn’t know glass did.  
Perucca: yes, and it varies. This type of installation and where it is located it must  
meet certain standards under the building code. The contractor should pull the permit.  
I’d reach back to Empire Door and Glass to see if they will do that.  
Johnson: we will do that.  
Perucca: you can pull it online. That is what is required to get a building inspector out.  
Yeshidagne: the other thing was the gas connected to the oven. I got a professional  
guy to come and look and I emailed you that.  
Perucca: yes, we have that from Paul Bunyan. It is addressed to Jimmy Love but  
under the 510 address. They may have attempted to pull the permit online but the  
status shows it as abandoned. I don’t know what the issue is. It hasn’t been inspected  
or approved.  
Moermond: Paul Bunyan needs to reapply, or even call and ask what happened to that  
permit?  
Perucca: I agree. Call 266-8989 and ask for assistance in permitting.  
Johnson: but that is routine permit that they should be able to figure out. Just some  
weird glitch.  
Perucca: yes.  
Moermond: right, and I count that as a good faith effort to resolve. It is fixable.  
Yeshidagne: we tried to get a permit and the City asked me who the contractor is. I  
have a contractor I didn’t send you yet. The biggest issue is vent and the hood. I went  
to Olson Sheet and Metal out of Minneapolis. He came by and looked and he didn’t  
think it was a big deal.  
Moermond: I’m wondering if it would be prudent to have him write up a bid for the work  
that is detailed and that the bid could be reviewed by the inspector to see if it  
addresses what is in the orders adequately before you begin doing work and pulling  
permits. So everything is in alignment. Is that something that would work?  
Yeshidagne: I did ask him that. He called the inspector to ask what to do but he  
couldn’t get in touch with her. He said he called 2 or 3 times.  
Moermond: I think the detailed bid is the best, and that way if Laura Huseby doesn’t  
feel like she can handle the specific mechanical improvements in the bid, it can be  
shared with the plan reviewers who does this type of work. Do that before you spend  
any money. Did this contractor give you a bid?  
Yeshidagne: not yet. He said he was out of state for a week, and then he will do it. He  
didn’t think it was big deal.  
Johnson: we’ll make sure he understands.  
Perucca: Inspector Huseby does give out the basic requirements in her orders,  
repairing damaged and disconnected duct supports on vertical run, penetrations into  
the duct work, and is leaking grease from the penetrations. Seal penetrations and  
repair duct work to the building. Provide grease collection at the base of the duct work.  
Moermond: with the cleaning of the duct work where grease has accumulated. Last  
week Mr. Zewdie said he did that work himself. Does cleaning require a permit?  
Perucca: it doesn’t. It needs a follow up inspection but doesn’t need to be included in  
the bid. Other items are a cracked PVC drain going into a plastic bucket of grease  
and oil. The ground area around this is saturated with grease. I do believe there was a  
temporary fix done last week. Not sure if that was with approved materials but they  
indicated a hose attached to the overflow which went into a bucket. Whether that is an  
approved method I leave up to the HVAC people.  
Yeshidagne: the exhaust fan I see a few loose bolts attached to the wall. My biggest  
problem was I didn’t clean the exhaust system during Covid. When you wash it, it goes  
all over the floor. I think that’s what the inspector saw. I cleaned it twice this year. The  
second guy just went up to the roof, cleaned with hot water down the hood and cleaned  
the container. Took a photo and the beginning and end. I didn’t see any leaking oil  
right now. I wisht eh inspector would come back again, she wouldn’t’ see any leaking  
oil. If you make me change it I have no choice. The metal guy will change the hood,  
maybe that is a good idea. The electric, I haven’t touched. I always call an electrician.  
I saw it mentioned a few times. I fixed the place because I didn’t know I needed a  
permit. I don’t get close to electric, trust me. No individual touched the electric part of  
it.  
Moermond: plans for unused part of the building?  
Yeshidagne: all we have to do is the contractor will call the inspectors to check the  
materials and then it can be approved. If they want us to fix something we will fix it.  
Moermond: if it is unused parts, the Certificate of Occupancy could be issued for the  
parts being used and leave the other parts uncertified until it is fixed.  
Perucca: as far as the electric work, it is noted that in the interior of 506/508 they have  
applied gypsum board to walls and wired heating units without plans or permits.  
Sounds like there may be new heating units that need inspection.  
Yeshidagne: no. the heaters were there when we bought it. Same with electric. We  
haven’t touched it. We bought it five years ago.  
Johnson: we can look again at that.  
Perucca: that is the second deficiency listed in the revocation.  
Moermond: Mr. Johnson, last week it was said you had come up with an estimate for  
the work. I want to say that was $40,000?  
Johnson: to replace the entire hood system from scratch. He is suggesting he hire the  
original contractor to bring it up to 100 percent code compliant with this order.  
Moermond: so this is a repair, not a replacement proposal, and you have a “to replace”  
bid. Understood. So, unless this bid comes in and is outrageous it makes more sense  
to do the repair. I know there’s a tipping point with these where replacement outweighs  
repair. What kinds of financial assistance would there be for a business like this?  
Johnson: NDC has emergency grants around $2,500. We do small business loans.  
There is a deed program which covers 30% of costs. I understand the local  
neighborhood group has access to emergency funding.  
O’Brien: Ben mentioned funding and neighbors united funding collaborative opportunity.  
That is a fund that exists specifically to support business and nonprofits in the Midway.  
There is a pocket of money, an application was sent to Atnafu and Ben so that would  
be a good opportunity. If you can move swiftly on that application to get it in front of  
Advisory committee that’s a great opportunity. I have spoken to the fund administrator  
and the Chair of Neighbors United Funding Collaborative (NUFC).  
.
Moermond: sounds like some of this is more manageable. You said your contractor  
won’t be back in town for a week. So maybe a 2-to-3-week timeline to get that bid.  
Could we have a written plan, in draft form, by November 28?  
Yeshidagne: yes.  
Moermond: I’d like to have a hearing again December 6 so we can review that and lock  
it in. That could be cancelled if we don’t need it but we’ll have it in case we need to  
discuss matters. We’ll put it in front of Council December 16. On the strength of our  
conversation today and the involvement of the organizations, I’ll recommend the  
business be allowed to remain open through the end of the year. I’ll say a timely  
fashion but I want to see timeline from contractors plus timelines related to financial  
applications. Be sure to include those in your draft.  
Laid Over to the Legislative Hearings due back on 12/6/2022  
2:00 p.m. Hearings (None)  
Fire Certificates of Occupancy  
25  
Appeal of Alena Carl, Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services, on  
behalf of Tanisha McCloud to a Fire Certificate of Occupancy Correction  
Notice at 1548 REANEY AVENUE #2.  
Prince  
Sponsors:  
Grant extension to December 1, 2022 for compliance (unless emergency conditions  
arise). Property to have interim inspection November 16, 2022.  
Alena Carl, SMRLS o/b/o tenant Tanisha McCloud, appeared  
Tanisha McCloud, tenant, appeared via phone  
[Moermond gives background of appeals process]  
Staff report by Supervisor Mitch Imbertson: the property appears to be a duplex. It was  
not in our Certificate of Occupancy program at the time of this process starting. It  
previously had a Certificate of Occupancy that was closed in 2007 as owner occupied.  
As of October 17, 2022 we received a complaint to our office regarding no heat in the  
property, boilers being removed, no Certificate of Occupancy file.  
Moermond: when was the no heat complaint?  
Imbertson: October 17. Water leaking from tub into basement and downstairs  
neighbor. Tenant using stove for heat and multiple extension cords. The inspector went  
out to investigate on October 17. Found tenants had space heaters and the temp was  
adequate at that time. We were told the owner had contracted someone to install two  
boilers on November 5. He issued orders and was out October 28 to follow up. Didn’t  
gain entry. And a note from October 31 that the inspector spoke with the building  
owner who was sending a copy of the information for the new heating system  
installation and a fire Certificate of Occupancy application. I don’t see that certificate  
application has been processed. Not sure the timeline on that. I also don’t see any  
permits pulled yet for the heating system. Not sure if application was made and  
permits are pending or if that hasn’t been submitted yet.  
Moermond: regarding the permits. In the normal course of events would it be pulled  
closer to the time of the work being done?  
Imbertson: ideally if they are hired and they have a date scheduled to come out to  
install they would submit the application as soon as they can so the permit can be  
issued before work starts. Sometimes if it is done as an emergency repair they can  
start and issue permit after the fact. This appears to have been scheduled some time  
in advance so I don’t see a reason for the permit application to be delayed.  
Moermond: what is the timeline on paperwork process for provisional Certificate of  
Occupancy application.  
Imbertson: it is up to two weeks delay depending on who received it and how many  
other permits and application were received.  
Moermond: does Ramsey County show a recent sale of the property? August 8 2021  
ad October 28, 2021. There are also delinquent property taxes on it for just under  
$2,000, scheduled to forfeit in 2023. The property owner didn’t pay taxes last year. So,  
we have that to be aware of. And then the immediate no heat situation, the biggest  
concern. What is going on with the space heaters?  
Carl: the landlord provided some space heaters and the client provided her own  
McCloud: he did bring one space heater. I bought 2 and then Xcel bought 2 more.  
Moermond: so you have five?  
McCloud: due to the plumbing issue the power is going out because it is too much  
power (sic-should be draw on the electric). The water is running through the walls and  
cutting off electricity. 2 of the heaters have already burned out. So now I only have 3.  
Moermond: is that water leaking from the upstairs toilet? The shower?  
McCloud: the neighbor did say it was leaking. I tried to find something to stop the leak  
but I have 3 children. It is hard to maintain it. It is damaging the flooring and making it  
leak. A shower curtain isn’t helping. That causes the electricity to go out.  
Moermond: without a photo it is hard for me to picture and help see what kind of  
solutions could be put into place. Do you pay the water bill? The landlord indicated he  
hired a contractor to deal with that. Does he have someone to deal with the plumbing.  
McCloud: yes, he had someone come out and look at the plumbing and he said it  
needs to be repaired as it is unsafe for the children with the electrical stuff. It is a  
hazard. The plumbing is all wrong. I don’t know how to explain it. It makes everything  
wet.  
Moermond: the landlord had someone look at it but he didn’t give you a date for the  
work to be done?  
Carl: not for plumbing. I spoke with him this morning so the 3 and 4 they will install  
boilers to have the heating going and hot water. It was hard to reach the landlord but  
he is in communication now. We’re trying to get a hotel room for Tanisha and her  
family until the boilers are put in place.  
Moermond: this is not an order to vacate.  
Imbertson: there isn’t one now. That is a possibility in the future if the heating isn’t  
addressed. At the time the inspector was in there was adequate heat and no conditions  
that ordered it immediately vacated. So an order to repair but that could be amended if  
temps make a drastic swing.  
McCloud: he said we were having carbon monoxide coming through which is why he  
said he had to have the boilers replaced. He did replace the stove but I started to  
smell like carbon monoxide and the inspector was concerned and wanted it shut off  
immediately. That was why the boiler was removed.  
Moermond: what are you looking for today?  
Carl: she would like a bit more time to relocate. We need more time to talk to the  
landlord, come to a settlement agreement of some kind, and have it be amicable with  
the landlord.  
Moermond: right now the inspector was last out on Friday, with no access.  
Imbertson: a letter was sent to reschedule for November 16 at 10 am. That was set  
prior to the appeal.  
Moermond: so we have the no heat situation under control. The housing condition with  
respect to the leaking wasn’t enough to rise to the level of ordering it vacated. You are  
looking for time. The November 16 appointment was for a full Certificate of  
Occupancy?  
Imbertson: yes, now that an application was received.  
Moermond: I’m struggling. We want to keep the landlord actively working towards repair  
on deadline, noting the impact to the tenant of being displacement if it isn’t done on  
deadline. It could be failure to complete the work would result in revocation for  
long-term noncompliance, especially if there is a failure with respect to restoring heat.  
McCloud: why do I have an order to vacate when I’m just trying to have a safe place for  
my kid? I just got settled in here. I don’t have a reason to vacate. I’m current on my  
rent.  
Carl: she was given a notice to vacate by the landlord because they are selling the end  
of the month. So she does have to leave the end of the month. If we could get an  
extension to the 30th I think it would essentially sort itself out without having to do  
anything more with the notice.  
McCloud: I really don’t want to move. I don’t want an eviction on my name. I have a  
disabled child. I don’t want to be displaced since I called inspection about a safety  
issue. I want to try to work with the landlord, maybe he still has a place to go to. My  
rent is up to date.  
Moermond: it sounds like more of a Housing Ccourt issue?  
Carl: our main concern was the Certificate of Occupancy. If he didn’t have it at time of  
reinspection we were concerned the City would ask the client to leave because of  
illegal occupancy. That was our main concern at the moment. In 30 days she will have  
to move out and we’ll have it sorted because she will be living elsewhere.  
McCloud: I can go stay with family if it gets cold. It hasn’t really been an issue. I don’t  
want to have to pay rent and still move and get an eviction. I need the return our  
deposit.  
Carl: we’re working with the landlord. After I sent the 24-hour notice about filing an  
emergency tenant remedy action (ETRA) he finally reached out to me about getting her  
in a hotel and getting things fixed.  
Moermond: so you’ve filed an ETRA?  
Carl: we just sent out the 24 notice of intent to file. We would file it tomorrow morning.  
So now he is in communication which changes things in a good way.  
Moermond: in terms of the safety of the occupants in the house. We have heat issues  
and leaking plumbing. Has the extension cord issue been dealt with? Especially of  
concern when used with space heaters. Those need to be plugged directly into a wall.  
McCloud: that’s another thing too. We have to use extension cords in some parts of  
the house because we don’t have many outlets. There is one in the living room. One in  
2 other rooms. One doesn’t work. So we have to have extension cords for heat to work.  
Moermond: in order for you to be there, I need to be assured that basic safety  
requirements are met. That means any space heater must be plugged directly into the  
outlet. It cannot be using an extension cord. I would suggest for other kinds of things  
you can often use a power panel and that may be a solution for lamps, televisions and  
so on without the same kind of electrical draw. I am serious. Those cords have got to  
go. That considers both the heat and the water. Water and extension cords is a recipe  
for disaster. You need to address that. Is that something you will commit too?  
McCloud: yes.  
Moermond: I’m going to ask the November 16 inspection needs to occur to make sure  
no new hazards have developed related to the plumbing and a follow up the heating  
issues have been addressed. I don’t like long term use of space heaters. We have a  
nice window where you aren’t using them intensely but there’s no guarantee of that  
McCloud: I don’t use them until the night.  
Moermond: we have a correction notice that doesn’t require the unit be vacated. We’ll  
do a follow up inspection November 16 to make sure the items we’ve discussed are  
addressed. We know a new Fire Certificate of Occupancy list will be put together then.  
If for any reason DSI finds it necessary to take action to order the unit vacated, I’m  
going to ask that unless it is emergency, they delay the vacate to at least December  
1. I do think we need that interim check though. I also get you need time to work  
something out. We’ll put this in front of Council November 16.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 11/16/2022  
3:00 p.m. Hearings  
Special Assessments - Garbage Hauling  
26  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 1016  
IGLEHART AVENUE. (File No. CG2202A3-1, Assessment No. 220112)  
Balenger  
Sponsors:  
Appeal withdrawn by owner (approve the assessment).  
Douglas Coppess, owner, appeared via phone  
Coppess: let me try and save you some time. I’m still not prepared so I’ll accept it the  
way it is and it’s the best I can do. I don’t have my documentation. I guess I don’t have  
the time to fight City Hall. I concede on the issue.  
Moermond: shall I consider your appeal withdrawn or do you want me to enter in that I  
recommend Council ratify the assessment?  
Coppess: I would just say, I appreciate the time but I haven’t been able to get to it.  
But I can get a straight answer from the Hauler about automatic billing or missed  
payment. I am so frustrated. I would just say withdrawn, what’s the difference, Marcia?  
Moermond: in both cases the assessment would be ratified.  
Coppess: just say I’m withdrawing my appeal.  
Moermond: we will do that.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 11/16/2022  
27  
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 1016  
IGLEHART AVENUE. (File No. CG2203A3, Assessment No. 220111)  
Balenger  
Sponsors:  
Appeal withdrawn by owner (approve the assessment).  
Douglas Coppess, owner, appeared via phone  
Coppess: let me try and save you some time. I’m still not prepared so I’ll accept it the  
way it is and it’s the best I can do. I don’t have my documentation. I guess I don’t have  
the time to fight City hall. I concede on the issue.  
Moermond: shall I consider your appeal withdrawn or do you want me to enter in that I  
recommend Council ratify the assessment?  
Coppess: I would just say, I appreciate the time but I haven’t been able to get to it.  
But I can get a straight answer from the Hauler about automatic billing or missed  
payment. I am so frustrated. I would just say withdrawn, what’s the difference, Marcia?  
Moermond: in both cases the assessment would be ratified.  
Coppess: just say I’m withdrawing my appeal.  
Moermond: we will do that.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 11/16/2022  
28  
Deleting the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 1621  
ARCADE STREET. (File No. CG2203A1, Assessment No. 220109)  
Yang  
Sponsors:  
Delete the assessment.  
No one attended.  
Staff report by Clare Pillsbury: this is for Quarter 2, 2022 for the amount of $102.71.  
The former property owner's son called and reported that the former property owner  
passed away on January 14, 2022 and is still receiving bills. They are currently living in  
the property and are responsible for the bills. However, they were in the hospital with a  
broken back for three months and were not aware of the payment that was required for  
Quarter 2, 2022. Staff recommends removing the assessment as a courtesy.  
Moermond: so recommended.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 11/16/2022  
29  
Deleting the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 956  
DUCHESS STREET. (File No. CG2203A2, Assessment No. 220110)  
Yang  
Sponsors:  
Delete the assessment.  
No one attended.  
Staff report by Clare Pillsbury: this is for Quarter 2, 2022 for $122.78. Hauler requested  
removing the assessment since it was from the previous property owner’s account that  
was never cancelled. Staff recommends removing the assessment since the property  
owner was being double-billed.  
Moermond: so recommended.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 11/16/2022  
30  
Deleting the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 1315  
WESTMINSTER STREET. (File No. CG2203A1, Assessment No.  
220109)  
Brendmoen  
Sponsors:  
Delete the assessment.  
No one appeared.  
Staff report by Clare Pillsbury: this is for Quarter 2, 2022 for $122.78. Hauler records  
show that the assessments for Quarter 1 - Quarter 3, 2022 that were sent for this  
property should have been assessed to 1313 Westminster Street. Therefore, staff  
recommends removing the Quarter 2 2022 assessment inquiry. We’ve submitted a file  
to remove the Quarter 1 assessment as well as the Quarter 3 assessment.  
Moermond: so recommended.  
Referred to the City Council due back on 11/16/2022