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Lanesboro to put decals on windows of abandoned buildings

Fri, Apr 11th, 2014
Posted in Lanesboro Government

By Jade Sexton

The Lanesboro EDA (Economic Development Authority) would like to place some historic decals in the windows of empty buildings in the downtown area. The window decals would help to improve the look of the buildings and the downtown, helping them not look so vacant. This would be done with the approval of the property owners.

The decals will be purchased from Kelly Printing in Preston. They can cover two windows for $800, which will be paid by the EDA with money coming from the Chamber and Public Utilities.

“I would like to see the property owners pay for part of it,” said Mayor Steve Rahn. “We’re making their property look better.”

Councilor Tom Smith noted the property owners are contributing to the chamber with dues.

Jason Resseman said he has seen the decals and they are very nicely done and look great. The council approved.

Well project

There has been a 6-week delay in the start of the well project due to frost melting and muddy roads. Todd said they are still planning on being done by the end of June.

There is a barn on the site that needs to be removed, and Todd said Phil Holtergaard is interested in taking the barn down and using the wood. This would save the city the expense of removing it themselves.

It was approved to allow Holtergaard to remove the tree. He can work up until the time the contractor needs access to the area, at which point the contractor will remove whatever remains.

Parking Spaces

Phil Dybing asked the council to put up a 30-minute parking sign in front of the corner grocery store. There is already a sign right on the corner, but the council agreed to put up another so there are two spots.

Councilor Tom Smith asked about enforcing the parking time limit. Mayor Rahn said it’s more of a common courtesy, and you would hope that people would respect it. Todd added the cost of the sign is very inexpensive.

Brush dump

Dybing also spoke to the council about the brush dump, and some concerns he has. “I understand the value of it, and that it needs to be taken care of once in a while,” he said. His concern was the location, as it is close to downtown Lanesboro and when it must be burned, there is a lot of smoke.

Mayor Rahn said they have been brainstorming different locations for a long time, but there aren’t a lot of options with land the city owns. Dybing said he just wanted to bring it up to see if there was any other location.

Girls Day Out

Sarah Pieper approached the council with some additions to the Girls Day Out event on May 3. It will be the third year for this event, and Pieper wanted to be sure they had all the permits they need.

Pieper said there will be music in the afternoon, and it will be a quiet group of people, not a large band. Eric Bunge has given her permission to use his lot for the music. There will also be a sidewalk sale, and Pieper was wondering if the $25 sidewalk sale permit was for all businesses involved or if they each need to purchase a permit. Todd said it should be good for everyone. Pieper asked about insurance needs as well, and Manion suggested she check with the city’s insurance provider to find out what is covered.

There will also be a walking fashion show as well, with businesses providing their own models to walk around modeling merchandise. Pieper said if things go well, they will include these events in the fall with the next Girls Day Out.

The council approved the events contingent upon the insurance and meeting the permit requirements.

Chamber of Commerce

Dee Slinde, the new Director of the Lanesboro Chamber of Commerce, updated the council. She said they are continuing to work on ways to promote the city. The chamber would also like to work together with the EDA. She noted the city’s 202 plan, the EDA’s plan, and the Chamber’s strategic plan all have many goals in common and it would be beneficial to work together on them.

Church Hill vacation

Todd informed the council there would be a petition for a vacation at Church Hill coming soon. After recent discussion with Dan Anderson about the parking at Church Hill Condominiums, Anderson has decided to petition to have a portion of the roadway vacated. Councilor Tom Smith asked if it would be possible to sell the five-foot strip of land to him instead of vacate it. City Attorney Tom Manion explained the city doesn’t own that strip, it’s just a right-of-way.

No more discussion will be held until Anderson files the petition.

Street Closures

The council approved a few requests for street closures due to events coming up. Jennifer Rogers requested closure of the alley near her house for a graduation party. Barbara Keith asked for two parking spaces to be blocked in front of the St. Mane Theater for a street dance. Jason Resseman asked for a street closure on Fillmore Ave from Sheridan to Whittier. They will be having a block party on August 31.

Street Plans

City employee Andy Drake asked the council if there were any plans for street repairs in the near future. He said the city hasn’t done any major street repairs since Whittier Street in 2008. Drake said he could help put together a street plan, and he could show the council the streets that need the most work.

Mayor Rahn said the city has accrued $130,000 from the sales tax, which is designated for street repairs. There is also $40,000 in the road maintenance/repair budget.

“We used to spend $40-50,000 a year, and we stayed on top of things,” said Drake.

Drake is going to put together a priority list and see what can be done with $170,000. The next major street repair is Zenith Street, which is scheduled for 2015.

Park Board resignation

The resignation of Orville Amdahl from the Park Board was approved. The council also approved a thank-you ad for the newspaper to show appreciation for his years of service.

Other business

The council approved the purchase of a Dell Computer for the city office at a cost of $1,600. The city is paying 30 percent of the cost and Public Utilities paying 70 percent.

The council approved the library’s request for access to the softball field for the Rhubarb Run on June 6.

A liquor license and gambling license were approved for Buffalo Bill Days.

The Local Board of Appeal and Equalization meeting will be April 14 at 5:30 p.m.

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