“We’ve been here for 29 years, and we’ve done everything that the city has asked us to do, but this is an issue. We need that area to park,” Historic Scanlan House and the Little River General Store owner Kirsten Mensing said in response to the Lanesboro City Council’s proposed parking ordinance. A concern had previously been brought to the council regarding business owners using the parking spaces next to the bike trail to park their commercial vehicles. In response, city attorney Thomas Manion drafted an ordinance restricting commercial vehicles from parking in downtown Lanesboro for the council to review at their October 2 meeting.
“I think the main goal of this was to eliminate the overnight parking of commercial vehicles,” Council member Jason Resseman said. “We need to continue to accommodate them (the business owners.)”
Council member Tom Smith felt that by opposing the parking ordinance, the business owners were only hurting themselves. “I think you’re killing your business by using parking spots that customers could be using,” he stated.
The business owners present at the meeting did not agree. “We have literally no place left in this town to park our commercial vehicles,” Mensing said, pointing out that nine businesses would be affected by the ordinance if it passed.
The council tabled the ordinance for the time being and assured the business owners that a representative from the Parking Committee would meet with them to discuss a solution to the problem.
Lori Bakke, chair of the Buffalo Bill Days Committee, reported that the event had another successful year. Arm wrestling for all ages, a basketball tournament, and a Vietnam Veterans Memorial trailer were all added to the event this year. Despite the sales for the beer tent being down from last year due to the weather, each of the eight volunteer groups still received $650 for their organization. “One of the things that set this town celebration apart from others is that we give back to the community,” Bakke noted.
Each year since 2005, the Lanesboro Chamber of Commerce has applied for the Dairyland Power Cooperative Tourism Grant to help pay for the tourism guides. Last year, the chamber distributed 26,000 guides. The grant is a matching grant, to which the City of Lanesboro has always donated $400. The chamber asked the council to do so again this year, to which they agreed.
Rob Wagner from the Lanesboro Fire Relief Association asked the council’s permission to allow pull tabs at the High Court Pub in Lanesboro. The council approved the request.
The council was updated on the Park Road project. There were some changes made that brought the issuance costs down by $7,500. Estimated costs for the suggested project additions were also presented to the council, which included putting a sidewalk in from the road to the basketball courts, striping on the parking lot, and redoing the sidewalk in front of the community center. The price for adding all three things to the project would come to $16,000. After a discussion, the council decided to delay doing the sidewalk work. The Lanesboro Public Works department will complete the parking lot striping.
A time extension request for the Auburn/Zenith project was received. City Engineer Brian Malm felt that the extension was justified, but recommended that the council not finalize it until closer to the end of the project as other factors such as weather could mean having to redo it later.
A pay request in the amount of $224,000 for the Auburn/Zenith project was approved.
At last month’s meeting, the council approved a request for a leave of absence from the EDA board from Jason Resseman until January 2018. The EDA requested that the council appoint a member to fill Resseman’s seat until he returns. Nobody from the council was able to step in.
A resolution renewing the agreement with MnDOT for the city’s welcome signs was approved by the council.
The next Lanesboro City Council meeting will be held on November 6 at 5:30 p.m.