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City to take legal action over MNGL lease

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news Red Wing, 55066
Red Wing Minnesota 2760 North Service Drive / P.O. Box 15 55066

Red Wing City Council members voted unanimously Monday night to authorize the city attorney to serve the corporation running Mississippi National Golf Links with a notice of default.

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The decision, which the council voted on after a closed session, stemmed from an announcement by current operator Wendell Pittenger in his September newsletter to course members stating he planned to close the 36-hole course effective Nov. 1.

Council member Lisa Bayley noted before the about half-hour

closed session that the city still has not received official notice from Pittenger about closing MNGL.

The city owns the course and leases it to Pittenger.

The council and city attorney Amy Mace said talking behind closed doors would protect attorney-client privilege while discussing potential actions for the city "including but not limited to litigation" should the lease be broken.

But more discussions need to take place about the general future of the course, council members said.

"We have a lot of unknowns right now, and we are going to need to have a very public, interactive discussion about what's going to happen next with that course," Bayley said.

She said the golf course committee is waiting for more information and does not have any immediate plans.

At Monday's City Council meeting, members also unanimously approved the use of up to $10,000 from the contingency fund should the city have to take on work at the golf course, mainly preparing it for winter.

"This is an approval if it becomes necessary," Bayley said.

While spending the money on Mississippi National isn't ideal, "we have to do this," Council member Dan Bender said. "We owe it to ourselves and to the people of Red Wing."

Members agreed the work would keep options open for MNGL and protect the course as a city asset.

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