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Council to meet with attorney, staff for workshop

The Nisswa City Council decided Wednesday, Jan. 15, to hold a workshop meeting with staff and the city’s attorney to discuss roles and city code.

City attorney James Gammello said at the meeting that he’d received a call from a council member who is a liaison to a department, and the department head stated he or she wasn’t comfortable working with the council member.

Gammello said his first inclination is to find direction within the city’s code, but it doesn’t address this matter in particular. He suggested that all council members read and get to know the city’s code, and suggested the city do a recodification.

He also suggested the workshop meeting.

“Clearly something is unusual in the city if an employee is saying to a council person, ‘I’m not comfortable meeting,’” Gammello said. “That’s a problem.”

He suggested the council, staff and Gammello meet and speak in generalities about the roles of staff and council generically. There would be no discussion about a particular employee or a particular union.

“It is a gross misconception if employees think that because there’s a collective bargaining unit that this body (the council) doesn’t control the group (staff),” Gammello said.

The council scheduled the workshop for 8 a.m. Monday, Feb. 24.

Gammello said the workshop won’t cost the city any extra money, but will be included in the cost laid out in the city’s contract with the firm.

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