The first order of business at the November 8 Rushford City Council meeting was canvassing of election results. Mayor Terri Benson will remain at the helm for another two-year term, as will councilors Andrew Linder and Sally Ryman for their four-year terms. All ran unopposed.
The council also took action in renewing governmental accounting standards, initially adopted in 2011. “The standard defines the wat we classify the fund equity in our governmental funds,” said City Clerk Kathy Zacher in the agenda statement. City auditors have recommended approval of two specific resolutions. One, committing Capital Fund Improvement Fund balance and revenues for future and ongoing capital improvement construction projects and equipment purchases, the other for committing specific revenue sources in the Special Revenue Fund. The action was approved unanimously.
Two past due utility bills were certified to Fillmore County for addition to property tax rolls. Both properties are rentals. It was later clarified that the properties in question are two ends of the same building, despite having differing street addresses. The past due billing is unfortunately recurring annually with the two properties.
Concilor Jim O’Donnell asked Zacher to clarify the process of notification of past due billing. “They’re notified every month that they are behind,” she responded.
“The city would be willing to set up a payment plan?” asked O’Donnell.
“Oh, yeah,” said Zacher. The city encourages those behind in billing to contact the city to setup a plan a for repayment or helps property renters/owners find assistance in paying utility bills to avoid negative repercussions. Five percent interest is added to the amount when certified to the county and occasionally, the county adds additional fees, according to Zacher. “This is just one of those where it doesn’t get paid. That’s the choice they’re making.”
The council also unanimously approved a Minnesota Department of Transportation grant agreement for maintenance and operation for the Rushford Municipal Airport. The agreement will be in effect for requesting state aid for eligible costs incurred at the airport.
Lastly, during reports/updates, Zacher indicated the Airport Commission is moving forward with the purchase of a new courtesy car for the airport. The current vehicle, which is something of a 70s relic, was purchased in 2015 and unfortunately has too many issues to make its usage prudent. Public Works employee Dave Lombard has secured an offer on a 2008 Chevy Impala, from Sugar Loaf Ford, for $3,844. “He’s been looking around for a good deal,” said Zacher. “This is under budget and clean. It’s reasonable.” The former courtesy car will be put up for local auction through Darr Auction.
Work on the access road to the city’s new canoe launch was scheduled to begin November 9. The long-awaited project will see a new launch just east of Highway 43/Mill Street on the north bank of the Root River. Generation X is constructing the roadway.
The next regularly scheduled council meeting is Monday, November 22, at 6:30 p.m., at city hall. It is open to the public.