A public hearing for amending the liquor ordinances was held at the November 7 Lanesboro City Council meeting. Karen Heimdahl from Sylvan Brewing thanked the council for working on it and said that she was in support of the proposed amendments as they would allow her business a little more flexibility.
The council reviewed the city’s liquor ordinances and made a motion to amend ordinances 112.03 and 112.22 and adopt ordinance 112.06. Council member Chase Bakke asked if ordinance 112.06 regarding the date the city clerk needed to be notified by was necessary as sometimes things happen at the last minute. City Administrator Michele Peterson said that it was not required by state statute and could be removed. A motion was passed to remove the approval of 112.06 from the original motion. Ordinances 112.03 and 112.22 were amended.
The consent agenda was approved and included the accounts payable, Resolution 2022-39 accepting a donation for the gazebo roof in Sylvan Park, and the closure of parking spaces along Parkway Avenue for turkey bowling.
City Engineer Brian Malm presented a pay request from Wapasha Construction to the council which represented 85% of the work done on the new wastewater treatment plant. The plant is operational and water is currently being run through it. Once it is biologically capable, operations will be shifted from the old plant to the new one. Council member Mitchell Walbridge asked if there would be any effect on the utilities in town during that transition and was assured that there would not. The pay request was approved.
The council also reviewed and approved pay request #3 for the street and utility improvements which represented 32% of the work in the contract.
Lanesboro Library Director Tara Johnson reviewed the library’s circulation report with the council. She noted that the library board had set a goal of reaching 2,000 circs or items checked out in a month. That goal was met in September with 2,047 items and 2,015 in October. The library’s overall numbers are coming back up to pre-COVID levels, and storytimes are starting up again.
The council discussed the needed repairs to the Little Norway walking bridge. The bridge lies on the property line so it’s difficult to determine whose responsibility the repairs are. The matter was tabled to give Peterson time to obtain costs and quotes for the project.
The council approved the acceptance of a grant from the Blandin Foundation to be used as a leadership boost grant for community planning. The focus of the grant will be winter tourism in Lanesboro. “We can all agree that that is a good topic to begin studying,” council member Joe Goetzke said. The grant was applied for under the EDA, but is actually a large group effort of a variety of organizations in Lanesboro. The next step for the grant is to conduct a winter tourism study through the University of Minnesota, which will include a 12-month study with a 360-degree look at tourism in Lanesboro. The council approved the study.
Several of the council members recently attended an event about MDoT’s art mitigation program. A motion to send a letter of support for it was approved.
The city’s personnel policies for overtime, health, dental, disability, clothing allowance, holidays, and annual leave conversion were reviewed and approved.
Ordinance 93.033 regarding the permitting of restaurants to operate on city sidewalks was reviewed. Planning and Zoning will also review it at its November meeting. Ordinance 54.06 regarding the public utilities fee schedule will be reviewed at the November Public Utilities Commission meeting and then will come back to the council for a vote in December.
The board discussed the term limits for boards and commissions. Peterson had researched state statutes and compared those to the Lanesboro ordinances. Mayor Resseman noted that it can be difficult to fill seats and having term limits can add to those difficulties. The matter was tabled.
A public hearing will take place at the beginning of the next city council meeting to discuss Resolution 2022-40 regarding the establishment of a TIF district.
The next Lanesboro City Council meeting was moved from 6:30 p.m. on December 5 to 5 p.m. that day because of the school’s holiday concert that evening. The Truth in Taxation portion of the meeting will begin 6 p.m.