Nisswa: City declares local emergency because of COVID-19 outbreak, closes city hall to public through April 10

This city signs at the roundabout welcomes motorists to Nisswa.

The Nisswa City Council conducted an emergency meeting via teleconference Friday afternoon, March 27, to:

  • Declare a local emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic: This means the city can use any emergency operations/management plans and pandemic response plans. Until further notice, all city council, commission and committee meetings will be conducted by telephone or other electronic means.

  • Extend this local emergency declaration until further city council action, and give city staff authorization to take certain actions, such as entering into agreements and contracts necessary to get materials, equipment and services required to respond to the local emergency (COVID-19).

  • Approve a temporary COVID-19 leave policy for city staff, which outlines when and how city staff can take leave in response to COVID-19.

  • Approve a temporary COVID-19 reduced operations policy, which outlines rules for city staff operations.

  • Extend the date of the closure of city facilities from Friday, April 3, to Friday, April 10, to comply with Gov. Tim Walz’s stay at home executive order. Those facilities include city hall and the Nisswa Community Center, and parks programming is suspended.

City Administrator Jenny Max, City Clerk Jonathan Stainbrook and Mayor Fred Heidmann were at city hall while council members Gary Johnson, Don Jacobson, Mike Hoff and John Ryan participated remotely in the March 27 meeting. Instructions on how the public could participate remotely were posted on the city’s website.
The meeting was held via teleconference for the health and safety of the council and members of the public. COVID-19 is the respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus.

Max thanked all city departments for being flexible and making city government function well.

The city continues to follow directives from the federal government and state, and to follow guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control, Minnesota Department of Health and Crow Wing County to protect staff, families and the community while continuing to provide essential city services.

Nancy Vogt may be reached at 218-855-5877 or Follow her on Facebook and on Twitter at


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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 or 218-855-5877 with story ideas or questions. Be sure to leave a voicemail message!
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