Weather Forecast


Fifty Lakes: Council requests liquor store pay back lease purchase loan

The Fifty Lakes City Council voted Tuesday, Sept. 12, to require the 50 Lakes Bar and Bottle Shop to fully repay the city for the liquor store's lease purchase loan, according to unapproved draft meeting minutes.

Mayor Tim Anick presented a brief history of the 20-year lease purchase agreement, which was $350,000, with the allocations of the payment based on the square footage that each entity occupied. Allocations were deemed to be 35 percent for city hall and 65 percent for liquor operations.

In 2014, the council voted to suspend the liquor store loan payments. The next year, the council voted to pay off the remaining loan balance of $168,166 with money from the city's general fund.

The Sept. 12 vote came after the council sent 750 surveys to get public feedback on whether the liquor store should pay back the loan entirely, partially or not at all, as well as the building lease payments for the store's patio addition.

The results of 233 surveys were: 48.5 percent for full payment of both lease and patio, 23.6 percent for no payment, 12.9 percent for just the lease payment, 10.3 percent with just comments and no indication, and 4.7 percent for patio payment only. Six residents asked questions and gave feedback during the meeting.

The council voted 3-1 to require payment of $190,562 from the liquor store to the city's general fund to cover the municipal liquor store lease purchase loan and the patio addition debts. Anick and council members Mark Bradley and Jay Weinmann approved the measure, while council member Jodie Schrupp was opposed.

Council member Linda Steffens was absent.

City Clerk/Treasurer Karen Stern said after the meeting that the council will likely discuss the logistics of the process at its October meeting.

2018 tax levy

The council set the preliminary 2018 tax levy at $437,330, which is the same as this year's levy. This amount includes: $190,510 for the general city fund; $173,870 for roads; $65,450 for fire and rescue; and $7,500 for parks.

The final levy will be approved in December. It can decrease from the preliminary amount set, but it cannot increase.

In other business Sept. 12, the council:

• Accepted a donation of $12,000 from the Fifty Lakes Fire Relief Association. The council designated $11,000 to be used for payment of the fire truck loan and $1,000 to be used for Fifty Lakes Day.

• Heard that there was one fire call and five medicals in August.

• Hired Sindey Anderson as a part-time bartender at the 50 Lakes Bar and Bottle Shop.

• Heard from Bradley that residents of Brody Court had talked to him about the city taking over the road. The residents would be responsible for engineering inspection costs.