Red Wing City Council briefsFrom the meeting of April 23, 2012.
Local tax will be considered
The city hopes to put a question on the ballot this fall to implement a local option sales tax, Red Wing City Council members said Monday.
“We have a pretty crunched timeframe to get it done,” said Council member Dan Bender, who also serves on the council’s revenue committee.
A local option sales tax is a tax applied by an entity such as a city or county. The funds collected likely will have to be used for projects of regional significance.
The proposed uses must be listed in the ballot question put to voters in November, Bender said. The question must be approved by the council by mid-August, so the city is looking to form a 12-member advisory committee to determine projects.
The tax also may need to be approved by the state Legislature.
Brewpub licensing approved
The council unanimously approved a new category of liquor licenses Monday allowing brewpubs, restaurants that contain on-site breweries, in the city.
The license allows a brewpub to sell liquor, including beer brewed on the premises, both on-site and in takeaway containers commonly called growlers. The city code previously prohibited alcohol manufacturers from having liquor licenses.
The request came as a brewpub called Red Wing Brewery plans to open at 1411 Old West Main St.
The owners said this “would be the revival of a tradition” of a city brewery.
City will contribute to chamber
The council unanimously voted to contribute $5,000 to the Red Wing Area Chamber of Commerce. The city “can make a contribution in exchange for some sort of public service,” Council administrator Kay Kuhlmann said. The chamber especially helps the city when it comes to education and communication issues, Kuhlmann said.
“To me it was more of a recognition of your cost for things we can no longer do here in the city,” Council President Ralph Rauterkus said, citing cuts and reductions at the city, especially in communications.
The money will come from the council’s contingency fund in 2012 and as part of the regular operating budget for 2013 and 2014.
“This has a communitywide benefit,” Council member Lisa Bayley said.
The council had discussed the possibility of a contribution in the past, and Kuhlmann said the contribution fits with the goal of collaboration laid out in the city’s strategic plan.
Violation penalties changed
City Council members voted unanimously to shift some city code violations from misdemeanors to petty misdemeanors.
The change will avoiding arrest warrants for offenses such as parking and noise complaints, dog or curfew violations and deer feeding.
The change would mean that a violator would automatically be convicted 10 days after failure to appear in court and the case would be sent to collections 30 days after that.
The changes were approved as part of the consent agenda.
In other news …
•The city accepted a $25,000 grant for trees to be planted in public spaces. The goal is to replace ash trees with a diversity of species. Grant funds will be used between the fall of 2012 and the spring of 2014, according to a staff report.
•The council unanimously approved a correction to the redistricting ordinance passed earlier this month. The ordinance incorrectly described the precinct boundaries in Ward 1.
•The council unanimously approved the appointment of Jo Seton to the Human Rights Commission for a term ending Dec. 31, 2013.
Monday’s City Council meeting lasted two and a half hours before going into a closed session to discuss a Minnesota Public Utilities Commission administrative hearing involving Xcel Energy. All members were present; Mayor Dennis Egan was absent.
— Compiled by Danielle Nordine, staff writer