The Potato Lake Association Annual meeting was called to order by President Brauer at 4:00PM. Kevin introduced the Board Members present: Kevin.Brauer, Ken Grob, Bob Berdahl, Sheila Hastings, and acknowledge board members who were not present: Dale Kunz, Brent Behrens, Dean Soltis, Pete Nyhus Tony Platz. He also introduced Jan Vold as the new social director and thanked Mary Ann Potraz and Jim Potraz for hosting the annual meeting.
- Kevin discussed the current membership of the Potato Lake Association. He reported that year to date the PLA has 110 members compared to 135 at this time last year. He noted a change was made to just electronically send the membership forms this year may have been one reason for the decline. Letters were mailed to try to increase membership early in the summer and these seem to get a better response rate. Kevin also reported the Potato Lake residents had raised $10,000 so for this year from donations which will be used to fund watercraft inspections.
- Water Craft Inspection and AIS: Bob Berdahl. reported on this item. He gave an overview of the number of the Hubbard County Lakes and Associations and stressed how important it is for all 22 Lake Associations to participate in helping to stop the spread of AIS. The county has budgeted for 8000hrs of inspections on 26 lakes. The Potato Lake budget for 2014 is $15,000 to cover 1000 hours of inspection. Monies include: $4,500 Grant from Lake Emma Twsp., $10,500 from donations from shore land owners on Potato Lake. Bob reported that the PLA Spent $1,000 on 2 counters to be located at both boat landings to get accurate data about the number of boats using each landing. He also reported that the state is going to provide $10,000,000 to help prevent AIS and Hubbard County is expected to receive $250,000 of those monies. So far, nothing has been found but Bob noted that 13% of the boats coming into Potato Lake are coming from infested waters with the majority coming from Iowa and North Dakota. He also noted how all the resorts on the lake are very supported and educating their guests about the threats of AIS.
- Neighborhood Captains: Ken Grob and Mike Vold introduced a program called Neighborhood captains as a way to provide better and more personalized means of communication to the lake shore owners. They shared an outline of the neighborhoods and a list of potential captains to implement the program. They also asked for volunteers to cover assigned neighborhoods.
- Communications: Kolt Ringer was introduced to talk about using technology to better communicate with the PLA membership and property owners. He gave quick background of how the PLA is trying to use as many tools to effectively communicate. He noted that over the past year emailing has been the most effective tool, but that there are still a high percentage of emails that are not opened or going to the wrong email address’s. He asked the members to make sure that we have a correct address and shared some tips to make sure the PLA emails were not getting put into a SPAM folder by accident. He also noted that the PLA website has been moved to a new address: potatolakeassociation.wordpress.com and there is a PLA Facebook Page. These will also be used to post information in a more timely manner.
- Friends of Headwaters: Kevin Brauer shared with the attendees an update on the Enbridge Pipeline. The Friends of the Headwaters is a group that has been organized in the area to study the project and is asking the state to consider an alternate route for the proposed pipeline. Kevin noted that the PLA submitted a letter taking the position that state and company should consider one of the three other alternate routes for the project due to the potential environmental impact of the current proposed route through the lakes country.
- Leadership, terms of Board Members: Kevin Brauer discussed the current position of the PLA Board. He cast an election for the officers for the following terms:
2014-2017 – Shelia Hastings, Tony Platz, and Dale Knutz nominated
2016 Terms – Brent Berhens resigning – Cindy Rauhn who was not in attendance was nominated to fill this position. Kevin asked for a motion, and a vote was approved for Cindy to fill this board position.
2015 Term Pete Nyhus and Dean Soltis resigning, Mike Vold and Tom Conzimeus were nominated through a motion and and a verbal vote approved this motion.
Kolt Ringer was nominated and a verbal vote approved his position on the board for Sheila’s expired term.
John Hastings will be resigning as PLA’s COLA representative. He gave a brief description of the position and Kevin asked for volunteers from the attendees to fill this position. No one volunteered at the meeting.
- Walter Ringer JR. Memorial Award: Joe Ringer, Bob Berdahl, and Kevin Brauer all were invited to present the 2014 award. John and Shelia Hastings were recognized for all of their contributions to Potato Lake, COLA, and the PLA. They were presented with the award for 2014.
- Comments and Questions: Kevin Brauer opened the meeting for any questions or comments. There were none from the meeting attendees. Kevin did ask if the format of the meeting combined with a picnic was preferred vs. a meeting and a separate picnic.
The meeting was adjourned and a picnic followed the meeting.
Minutes submitted by Kolt Ringer