By Hannah Wingert
The Lanesboro City Council met at 5 p.m. on November 2 to hold a budget workshop. It was noted that utilities will go up because the city has to prove that it can pay for the new wastewater treatment plant. A few minor changes were made to the 2021 budget, but nothing major was changed.
At 5:45, a public hearing was opened to discuss the potential vacation of a portion of Fillmore Avenue N., which would clear up some title issues as the existing house is on the property line. Attorney Greg Schieber reviewed the petition and recommended that the council approve it. No one else was present to discuss the matter and the hearing was closed.
At 6:00, a public hearing to discuss the proposed rural taxing district was opened, but as no one had any questions or comments, it was closed and the regular meeting was called to order.
The council reviewed the petition to vacate a portion of Fillmore Avenue N. and approved the request per the guidelines presented by the Planning and Zoning Commission.
Mike Bubany gave a capital improvement update to the council, reviewing the financial impacts of the wastewater treatment facility project that will take place in 2021 and the renovation of Highway 250 in 2026. In preparation for both projects, he recommended that the sewer rates be increased in 2021 and that small increases be added to the water and electric over the next few years.
The council tabled the discussion on the rural taxing district as the county has not been able to address it yet due to the elections. The matter will be revisited at the regular December meeting.
The invoice and change orders for the dam project were approved.
No changes were made to the COVID-19 response for public facilities. Mayor Jason Resseman reminded the council that the discussion will be ongoing for as long as it’s needed. “We need to start thinking about how we’re going to springboard back from this,” he added. The original decisions that the council made regarding the total and partial closures of public facilities will expire on December 31, so the council will need to decide how to proceed after that.
Over $30,000 of the CARES Act funds have been used and City Administrator Michele Peterson predicted that another $22,000 would be spent over the next few weeks which will leave approximately $4,500 left. If that is not spent, than it will go to Fillmore County which will then disburse the funds as it sees fit.
Ads have been placed for all open seats on various boards and commissions within Lanesboro. Peterson asked that anyone interested in applying contact the city office at (507) 467-3722
A last minute change had to be made to the election judges. Council member Mindy Albrecht-Benson offered to fill the open seat which the council approved.
The city’s contract with CEDA is up for renewal at a total cost of $13,390. Mayor Resseman strongly supports CEDA’s efforts and assistance in Lanesboro and recommended that the council approve the contract for another 12 months. A motion approving the contract was passed.
The next regular Lanesboro city council meeting will be held on December 7 at 6 p.m.