Sister skaters

The warming house at the Ranier Rink won’t open this season due to concern about the pandemic.

The warming house at the Ranier Rink will not open this season, due to COVID-19 restrictions and concerns.

Berta Wilcox, Ranier Recreation Club, reported to the Ranier City Council, meeting in committee Nov. 10, that the Ranier Recreation Club recommends not opening the warming house, and instead suggests it rent a heated port-a-potty, at a cost of $110 a month for four months. The club also recommended wind blocks be built around the fire pit for folks to warm up since the warming house will be closed.

Ranier Public Works Supervisor Nick Hagen said he could build the structure at around $330. Mayor Dennis Wagner asked Hagen to also look online for a windbreak. CARES Act, or Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security, funds could be used to purchase the materials for the windbreak.

Wilcox also reported that the muni had a “great month” with pull-tab sales at over $6,000, to the benefit of the club. She said the club will cancel the annual Christmas Party because of COVID-19 restrictions.

The council will review an engineering proposal from Joe Sutherland, Widseth, Smith and Nolting, for the boat ramp and parking lot project at a cost of $29,100. A previous quote of $62,000 from AMI Engineering was received.

During the audience portion of the meeting, resident John Bruggeman asked whether the engineer would be made available for questions, adding Sutherland would be good for the project since he is familiar with the area and could come up with a good landscaping plan. Councilmember Todd Coulombe said the council would want Sutherland to come and explain the proposal.

City Administrator Sherril Gautreaux reported the Koochiching County Small Business Relief Fund Program is coming to an end. Koochiching County chose not to distribute any more funds to the program, she said.

Meanwhile, the council will commit $7,658 of its CARES Act funds to the Small Business Relief Grant Fund Program to provide a $10,000 grant to Decker’s Family Care, which operates Ranier Roost.

The council reviewed the liquor store operating Statement for the month of October, when it showed a net profit of $1,709. The year-to-date net profit is $21,851 compared to October 2019 with a net profit of $4,103 and a 2019 year-to-date net profit of $46,465.