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Preston City Council Report: Preliminary 2007 budget proposal discussed


Fri, Aug 25th, 2006
Posted in Government

An early budget draft was presented to Preston City Council members for discussion at the August 21 meeting. City Administrator Joe Hoffman introduced the budget and added that "no red pen" had been used on the requests made by the various department heads. He highlighted significant increases in health insurance, retirement plans, and a possible additional $10,000 for the street department for overlays.

Mayor Kurt Reicks speaking for the fire department explained that a new pumper truck will be needed by 2010. The city would be responsible for half of the cost with the townships contributing the other half. Council member Heath Mensink, with the Park Board, noted the need for a new mower requiring an additional $6,000 for that department. Council member Steve Knoepke questioned salary increases in the library budget and the size of the ambulance service fund.

Hoffman suggested that representatives from each department be invited to the next meeting on September 5 to discuss their requests. He stated that it will need to be decided whether to pay for items like a new pumper truck and street overlays now or later. Hoffman suggested that they bring options showing cuts and deeper cuts.

The preliminary budget would require more than a 13% increase in revenue from the tax levy. Hoffman pointed out that this is just a place to start. He asked if there should be a goal to reduce the levy increase to about 5%. Mensink suggested that it probably won't be possible to limit the increase to less than 7%. Knoepke insisted that we can't live with a 13% increase.

Members decided to discuss the proposals more at the September 5 meeting. If necessary another special final discussion on the budget will be held on September 6.

Cost of Living (COLA) increases for 2007 were proposed by Dan Boesen representing the Preston Public Employees Association (PPEA). He asked for a 5% increase. Knoepke said that 5% was "awful steep" and that the city can't afford to fund that amount along with the step increases granted employees. Hoffman noted that the Consumer Price Index (CPI) from July 2005 to July 2006 showed an increase of 3.3% for the Midwest region.

Joe Hoffman explained that both the council and Utility Commission need to approve an increase and negotiate with the union. The 2006 increase was 3%. He added that the COLA does not have to be set until the end of the year, but that it needs to be addressed now for budgeting purpose .....
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Lanesboro City Council Report: Overnight parking issue addressed

Fri, Aug 25th, 2006
Posted in Government

Mrs. B's owner Terry Neumann called a recent enforcement of the "No Parking" ordinance "ill thought out" and declared it would have "far reaching effects" in a letter to the Lanesboro City Council at their regular meeting August 21st. Neumann went o ..... 
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Pilot Mound residents want moratorium on campgrounds

Fri, Aug 18th, 2006
Posted in Government

PILOT MOUND - One hundred twenty eight Pilot Mound residents, more than twice the 57 people who voted in the last township election, have signed a petition calling for the township supervisors to implement an interim moratorium on campgrounds in ord ..... 
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Record numbers use Rushford library

Fri, Aug 18th, 2006
Posted in Government

RUSHFORD - "I have the best job in the city!" declared Rushford Public Librarian Susan Hart as she presented her annual report to the city council at their regular meeting August 14. Hart began her report by unfurling a banner longer than the meetin ..... 
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Zoning commission okays Amish cemetery

Fri, Aug 18th, 2006
Posted in Government

PRESTON - At their August monthly meeting on Thursday, the Fillmore County Planning & Zoning Commission heard proposals for two conditional land use permits (CUPs).

Amish Cemetery

Daniel and Verna Detweiler petitioned for a CUP ..... 
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Campaign finance complaint against Davids dismissed

Fri, Aug 18th, 2006
Posted in Government

The Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board have dismissed a complaint against the People for Davids Committee which was brought by Frank Wright, Peggy Hanson and Harlan Taylor, all of Lanesboro. The ruling was issued on August 15.
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Preston City Council Report: No assessments for street maintenance

Fri, Aug 11th, 2006
Posted in Government

Concerned citizens of Preston made clear their opinions at the public hearing portion of the Preston City Council meeting on August 7. Engineer Joe Palen of Bonestroo and Associates explained the planned milling and overlay street projects. Overlays ..... 
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Harmony City Council Report: Board hears music event proposal

Fri, Aug 11th, 2006
Posted in Government

Harmony - On August 8 Corey Scrabeck attended the Harmony City Council meeting to propose a music event that would be held within the city. "For the last couple of years I've been thinking about how to bring young people to town to have fun," stated ..... 
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E911 signs

Fri, Aug 11th, 2006
Posted in Government

PRESTON - The Fillmore County Board continued reviewing 2007 budget proposals from several departments at their August 8 meeting. Commissioners look through detailed budget proposals for items that can be reduced or that may need additional dollars. ..... 
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