The Crosslake City Council agreed to again pursue a half cent local option sales and use the tax to fund specific capital improvements.

Projects include wastewater plant projects and extending city sewer service to the County State Aid Highway 66/Moonlite service area and Daggett Lake service area.

It’s estimated a local option sales tax would generate $4,800,000 over 15 years.

The city started down this path in 2020, but was interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. It must receive legislative approval authorizing the tax, and then it must hold an election to receive voter approval for the projects within two years of receiving legislative approval.

If ballot questions received voter approval, the council would pass an ordinance imposing the tax.

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The council made the following organizational meeting appointments for 2021, among others:

  • Designated Marcia Seibert-Volz as acting mayor.

  • Approved the schedule of regular council meetings (7 p.m. the second Monday of the month) and schedule of council and commission meeting dates.

  • Appointed the Echo Journal and Northland Press as official newspapers.

  • Appointed Breen & Person for civil legal services; Johnson, Killen & Seiler for labor legal services; Crow Wing County for prosecuting legal services; Briggs & Morgan for bond counsel; and David Drown Associates for bond adviser.

  • Approved Frandsen Bank and 4M Fund as official depositories.

  • Approved commission reappointments and commission liaison appointments.

The council decided to seek applications for city engineering services in 2021, and agreed Monday to interview four of six companies that responded: Widseth, Bolton & Menk, Moore Engineering, and WSB.

Public safety

The December police reports listed 187 incidents in Crosslake, including 49 traffic warnings, 11 traffic citations, one traffic arrest, three thefts and five property damage accidents; and 71 incidents in Mission Township, including 47 traffic warnings, eight traffic citations and six traffic arrests.

The council also received police department annual reports for 2020 for both Crosslake (2,074 total incidents) and Mission Township (626 total incidents).

The fire department reported 44 calls in December and 365 total calls in 2020. The council received a fire department annual report for 2020 as well.

Mayor Dave Nevin reported the fire department should be able to move back into the remodeled fire hall in the middle to end of March.

In other business, the council:

  • Agreed to open city hall to the public again after the governor lifted COVID-19 related restrictions.

  • Received a feasibility report for proposed 2021 road improvements and set public hearings on those proposed improvements. Roads include Wild Wind Drive, estimated cost $180,900, public hearing 6 p.m. Feb. 2; Rushmoor Boulevard and Rushmoor Trail, estimated $215,000 cost, public hearing 7 p.m. Feb. 2; Harbor Lane, estimated $161,100 cost, public hearing 6 p.m. Feb. 3; Birch Narrows Road, estimated $286,100 cost, public hearing 7 p.m. Feb. 3; and Whitefish Avenue, Hilltop Drive, Woodland Drive and Cool Haven Lane, estimated $506,900 cost, public hearing 6 p.m. Feb. 4.

Nevin voted against because he wanted to see costs to do overlays instead of complete road reconstruction.

  • Accepted a donation of $405 from Meghan Zierke for the library in memory of Doris Stevenson.

  • Agreed to allow the Crosslake Chamber to host SoupFest and fireworks as part of WinterFest activities Saturday, Feb. 6.

  • Approved an ordinance amending the city code related to vacation of streets to match state statute.

  • Agreed to accept cash in lieu of land for the Huss lot split and for the Miller subdivision.

  • Heard from Police Chief Erik Lee that there may be many ambulances, fire trucks and squad cars in town Thursday, Jan. 14, for a Cuyuna Regional Medical Center paramedic whose funeral will be at the Log Church in Crosslake. He died after suffering a heart attack while on the job.

Council member Dave Schrupp attended the meeting online via Zoom. Other council members and staff were present at city hall.

Nancy Vogt may be reached at 218-855-5877 or nancy.vogt@pineandlakes.com. Follow her on Facebook and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/@PEJ_Nancy.