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Pequot Lakes City Council takes action to promote residential developments

Council takes annual review of capital improvement projects and how to pay for them

Pequot Lakes bobber water tower May 2022.JPG
Pequot Lakes bobber water tower May 2022
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PEQUOT LAKES — Residential developments and capital improvement projects were part of the Monday, Nov. 7, Pequot Lakes City Council meeting.

The council heard from Jason Murray, of David Drown Associates, the city’s financial consultant, who gave an annual presentation that included future projects on the city’s capital improvement plan, estimated costs and possible ways to pay for them while striving to keep a 50% tax rate.

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Projects on the list include a large force main and wastewater pond upgrade, along with various street improvements that stretch out over the next 10-plus years.

This is a working document and nothing is set in stone. Projects and estimated costs could both change, as well as the years they are done.

The city list also includes a fire truck (2025) and rescue truck (2029), which would be for the Pequot Lakes Fire District so costs would likely be shared.

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Murray shared revenue sources for projects, including cash, grants, fundraising as well as sewer and water rates and fees.

“Water, sewer, taxes are basically your three sources,” he said, later explaining the city’s existing debt and possible revenue sources.

The council also discussed the future of Patriot Avenue with City Engineer Tim Houle, of Widseth. Houle shared various scenarios, which the council will address at future meetings.

Development

The council approved the following planning and zoning commission items regarding developments:

  • A comprehensive plan amendment revising the future land use map reflecting the city’s expectation for an increase in higher density residential development and expanded higher density residential areas.

The city hopes to ensure there are sufficient residential lots available for future residents.
Possible residential development is targeted along County Road 11 east of the highway to Breezy Point, and the commercial part of Lilac Drive and south to the County Road 168/Patriot Avenue/Highway 371 intersection.

  • An ordinance amendment to a section of the zoning ordinance to reduce the minimum lot size and dimensional requirements of the transition residential zone to allow for higher density residential development.
  • An ordinance amendment to a section of the land use matrix to simplify the conditional use permit process.

In other business Monday, the council:

  • Accepted donations, including many donations to the library; $2,135 from the Breezy Point Area Women’s Club and $4,145 from Community Action of Pequot Lakes, both for a heart monitor for the police department; and $1,000 from the American Legion Club for Christmas lights in the park.
  • Approved the 2023 law enforcement contract and joint powers agreement with Jenkins for $3,433 per month, or $41,200.
  • Learned police had 322 calls for service in September.
  • Agreed to have a special meeting at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 15, to canvass election results and finalize budget details.
  • Approved a contract for the city to provide wastewater services to Lake Shore.
  • Certified delinquent accounts to the tax rolls.

Nancy Vogt, editor, 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.

Nancy Vogt is editor of the Pineandlakes Echo Journal, a weekly newspaper that covers eight communities in the Pequot Lakes-Pine River areas - from Nisswa to Hackensack and Pequot Lakes to Crosslake.

She started as editor of the Lake Country Echo in July 2006, and continued in that role when the Lake Country Echo and the Pine River Journal combined in September 2013 to become the Pineandlakes Echo Journal. She worked for the Brainerd Dispatch from 1992-2006 in various roles.

She covers Nisswa, Pequot Lakes, Lake Shore and Crosslake city councils, as well as writes feature stories, news stories and personal columns (Vogt's Notes). She also takes photos at community events.

Contact her at nancy.vogt@pineandlakes.com or 218-855-5877 with story ideas or questions. Be sure to leave a voicemail message!
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