Red Wing City Council briefsRed Wing City Council briefs for the Dec. 10, 2012, meeting
Red Wing City Council approved 6-1 a contract Monday with Flaherty and Hood for state lobbying, mainly to include Red Wing projects in a potential state bonding bill.
The projects include work at the Sheldon Theatre, along Levee Road and to build the west Red Wing fire station. Finance Director Marshall Hallock said it is highly unlikely all three projects would be included in a bill this year, but the city should start positioning itself to inform lawmakers about the projects.
Council member Peggy Rehder voted against the motion. She said she was “dismayed” at the short notice given to review and approve the contract and said other companies should have been explored.
Other council members were concerned about the timing as well and said they should come up with a process for similar contracts in the future.
The contract is based on hourly rates and will not exceed $20,000. Council members emphasized the firm should stop work if it becomes clear the Red Wing projects don’t have a chance to be funded this year.
Council members also unanimously approved a contract retaining attorney Tom Harlan to assist the city on spent nuclear fuel issues. The cost for work in 2013 is estimated at about $55,000, exceeding the budgeted $35,000. Staff recommended using $20,000 from the contingency fund on top of the budgeted money.
Port, HRA budgets approved
The Red Wing City Council unanimously approved the Red Wing Housing and Redevelopment Authority’s tax levy and budget for 2013 at Monday night’s meeting. The HRA’s property tax levy will be $262,640, the same amount as in 2012.
The council also unanimously approved the Port Authority’s 2013 budget. The issue was tabled at the council’s special meeting Dec. 3 so some items could be finalized, and the new budget leaves the port with a positive cash flow for 2013. The port’s levy was approved that night at $307,409.
Bender says goodbye
Monday’s meeting was Council member Dan Bender’s last on the City Council.
“Thank you, Dan, for all your work in the past couple years,” Council President Ralph Rauterkus said. He noted Bender has been on many key committees during his time on the council.
Council member Mike Schultz said one of Bender’s first assignments was to get the Hiawathaland Transit Center up and running, and the station near Perkin’s is now open for park-and-ride commuters and bus transfers.
Bender announced in the spring he would not seek re-election to his Ward 1 seat. Jason Sebion ran unopposed in November’s election and will take over the position in January.
Parking changes OK’d
The City Council unanimously approved two parking changes as part of the consent agenda Monday.
Parking on the north side of Sixth Street between East and West avenues will no longer have restrictions of 30 minutes and two hours but will instead have the standard 20-hour restriction. Goodhue County staff recommended the change due to a shift in the use of the Goodhue County Public Health Building.
The council approved a plan to add a 15-minute parking stall near the Riverbend Co-op on Main Street east of the Studebaker Park ramp entrance.
In other news…
• The city of Red Wing will receive $86,035.11 from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety in disaster funds for repairs stemming from flooding earlier this year. The money is a mix of FEMA and state dollars.
• The City Council unanimously approved three reappointments: Gary Stone and Don Olson to second terms on the Heritage Preservation Commission expiring Dec. 31, 2015, and Dan Munson to the Advisory Planning Commission for a term expiring Dec. 31, 2015.
• The council agreed to cancel its second regular meeting in December, which landed on Dec. 24.
Monday’s City Council meeting lasted about two hours and 10 minutes before members entered a closed session to discuss labor negotiations, strategies and developments. All members were present.
--Compiled by Danielle Killey, staff writer