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The Nisswa City Council on Wednesday, Feb. 15, approved four ordinance amendments relating to: dynamic display signs in the highway business district and the definition of those signs; water quality; guest quarters and the definition of that; and miscellaneous clerical amendments. The council also approved the classification and intended sale of tax forfeited land, and amended the planning and zoning fee schedule to remove demolition permits.
After a career working at two large law firms in Chicago, Kevin Egan is happy to be living in the north woods and taking on his new role as mayor of Lake Shore. Elected in November, Egan said he ran for the position because former mayor John Poston asked him to do so. Poston ran successfully for a state House seat. Smalltown leadership is nothing new to Egan. He served for about 20 years as the equivalent of a city council member in the village of Frankfort, Illinois.
A skateboard park may be in Pequot Lakes' future. A park commission subcommittee has been meeting with students and parents who are interested in having a skateboard park in Pequot Lakes with the expectation that most, if not all, funding for the park would be raised through the community, according to written information Mayor Nancy Adams shared Tuesday, Feb. 7, with the city council.
The Nisswa City Council on Wednesday, Feb. 15, agreed to hire an interim city clerk and awarded a contract to pursue filling the position. The council accepted Laurie Hemish's resignation effective Friday, March 2, and praised her service. She has worked for the city for 20 years, including the last 10 as clerk/treasurer.
Considering City Clerk Laurie Hemish's upcoming resignation, the Nisswa City Council agreed its first priority likely will be to hire an interim clerk. The council met Tuesday, Feb. 7, to discuss its options, and is expected to take action at its regular monthly meeting Wednesday, Feb. 15, regarding an interim clerk and how best to fill the position. Hemish's last day is Friday, March 2.
Presiding at his first city council meeting Monday, Jan. 23, Lake Shore Mayor Kevin Egan asked residents to think about any initiatives they want the city to tackle over the next few years. "The town is in good shape, obviously," Egan said. "But are there other things you'd like to do?" He said topics that have been mentioned include getting fiber optic throughout the community and revising the city website. He said if anyone had other ideas, a committee possibly could take them up.
The city of Nisswa likely won't undertake any road projects this year, but the council is exploring ways to research options to fund road improvements. In talking Wednesday, Jan. 18, about forming a committee to explore funding options for road resurfacing, the council broached the idea of creating a more formal public works committee with citizen members, along the lines of the city planning commission. That public works committee could then take on the task of researching road funding options.
Nisswa's parks and recreation director for the past two-plus years resigned, and the Nisswa City Council on Wednesday, Jan. 18, agreed to advertise to fill the position with an application deadline of Friday, Feb. 10. The council accepted Alex Hondl's resignation with regret. Hondl, who wasn't at the meeting, said later by phone that he accepted a parks and trails maintenance supervisor job in Baxter, calling it a good opportunity for him.
Nine themes surfaced from a Jan. 10 visioning session where Nisswa community members shared their thoughts about the city as part of the process to update the city's comprehensive plan. Ashley Kaisershot, planner and zoning specialist with the National Joint Powers Alliance, compiled the information gathered at the information session and revealed the following themes from the roundtable discussions:
After seeking community input, the Pequot Lakes City Council on Tuesday, Jan. 17, approved a Trailside Park master plan concept that would turn part of Highway 371 into parkland. "This is a concept. This is the idea," said Mayor Nancy Adams, emphasizing that a committee will need to be formed to decide what features to pursue and when, as well as how to pay for them. Council member Scott Pederson agreed that items included in the park concept won't be funded through the city budget, though eventually the city will have to budget funds to help maintain the park.