Winthrop allows UFC fuel island and pump

WINTHROP – By a 4-1 vote Friday, the Winthrop City Council approved rezoning property from R-1 to C-1 and a United Farmers Cooperative (UFC) Conditional Use Permit (CUP) request to add a new island and pump system to dispense diesel fuel on Highway 19 just east of its existing C-store.

City Councilor Pete Machiaek cast the dissenting vote on the resolution, as he did last Monday when the city council disapproved of the zoning change by a 3-2 vote.

The difference was councilor Lyle Muth’s decision to vote for the resolution Friday. Muth voted against it last Monday. According to Minnesota Statute, the reclassification required a two-thirds vote.

Muth said he asked Winthrop Mayor Dave Trebelhorn to have the council reconsider the vote, saying he voted against the zoning change request “based on emotion” on Monday.

“I realize I’ll disappoint some citizens. I apologize,” Muth added. “I realize its for the benefit of the citizens of the community that this resolution be passed.”

Trebelhorn said he talked to Winthrop City Attorney Don Lannoye about holding a city council meeting to reconsider the issue and learned the city council could reconsider the issue the issue, as long as a member of the ruling body (city council) asked him to do so, according to Robert’s Rules of Order.

The UFC diesel fuel project includes the demolition of two homes just east of it’s C-store.

Public testimony limited to two minutes per person was taken at the city council meeting last Monday when several people spoke in favor of and against resolution. No public testimony was taken Friday.

At Monday’s city council meeting, Lannoye said the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) will consider and must approve the project if and when it was approved by the city council.

The CUP will expire and must be renewed after one year of actual operation of the new fueling island and pump system, according to the resolution.

Resolution conditions include:

The CUP will not be injurious to the use and enjoyment of other property in the immediate vacinity for the purposes already permitted, if reasonable conditions are set in place.

The establishment of the Conditional Use will not impede the normal and orderly development and improvement of surrounding vacant property.

Certain conditions must be set in place to ensure that adequate utilities, access roads, drainage and other necessary facilities have been or are being provided.

Adequate measures have been or will be taken to provide sufficient off-street parking and loading space to serve the proposed use, prevent or control offensive odor, fumes, dust, noise and vibration, so that none of these will constitute a nuisance; to control lighted signs and other lights so no disturbance to neighboring properties will result; and eliminate any traffic congestion or traffic hazard which may result from the proposed use.

Fritz Busch can be e-mailed at

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