Mayor Autumn Johnson read a resolution proclaiming August 24 as American Legion Day in Lanesboro at the June 4 city council meeting. Several of the Legion members were present to hear the resolution. The Legion is nearing a century of service in Lanesboro and is the only Legion building in Minnesota that is on the historic registry.
American Legion commander, Jim Haugan asked the council to consider designating the first six parking spots on Elmwood Street as Legion member parking. He pointed out that it’s often hard for older members to visit the Legion due to a lack of parking spots available near the building. The council approved a motion to designate those spots as two-hour parking.
Lanesboro resident, Jim Watson, brought some concerns about ordinances not being enforced to the council for consideration. “Ordinances are no good unless they’re enforced,” he pointed out. His main concerns were a growth of noxious weeds on public and private property, properties that are not being maintained, and sidewalk/alley maintenance. He also asked that the council consider placing signs around town forbidding bicycle riding on sidewalks. “It’s a liability waiting to happen,” he said. Mayor Johnson thanked him for his concern and assured him that those issues are being addressed by the city. She also offered to sit down with him to go over each of the issues he noted.
The council approved the terms and interest for the Zenith Street paving assessments with a 10-year term and 1% increase from the city’s bonding interest. They also approved resolutions declaring the cost to be assessed and ordering preparation of the proposed assessment, a hearing on the proposed assessment, authorization of the issuance of a GO Note, and approved the loan agreement.
Jason Boynton from Smith Schafer & Associates presented the 2017 audit review with no significant findings.
The Art Center has been working on replacing the city welcome sign on County Road 8 and have found a sign manufacturer who is willing to donate the sign. The property owners have agreed to a sign change and the existing sign will be preserved. The council approved the new welcome sign.
Several of the property owners from Westview Drive were present at the meeting to discuss the stone culvert under their road that is collapsing. After looking into it, City Administrator Michele Peterson discovered that the road is not a city street, but is actually a private drive owned by the adjacent property owners. “I wanted to bring it to the council’s attention,” she said. City Engineer Brian Malm had been able to look at the culvert and determined that it needs to be replaced and the hole it has created needs to be filled in. “It’s not a functioning culvert,” he said. As the street is not the city’s property, it complicates the matter. Mayor Johnson suggested that both property owners deed their easement to the city so that it would officially be city property. They could then fix the culvert instead of the owners having to take care of it themselves. The rest of the council agreed with that suggestion and approved a motion to move forward with the process to acquire the easements.
Peterson put together a job description for the public works maintenance director position which the council reviewed and approved. Advertisements for the position will be posted.
Several Lanesboro residents brought concerns about the parking situation on Milwaukee Road to the council. The parking spots there are perpendicular to the road, but vehicles often parallel park, taking up two much needed parking spots. After discussing the issue, the council approved a motion to designate the first two spots going from south to north as handicapped spots and set the rest as two hour parking from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. starting in April each year and ending in October.
The Lanesboro city offices will be closed on June 28.
A liquor license allowing the Lanesboro Area Chamber of Commerce to hold a beer and wine tasting on Buffalo Bill Days was approved.
The Park Board asked for permission to spend over their budget for a new truck if needed as they are unable to find a replacement for the current one that is within the budget. A motion was made to authorize a purchase up to $30,000, but was defeated.
Peterson recently had the opportunity to visit with the town manager from Lanesboro, Mass., when he was in town. He presented her with some books and posters from his city and wished to discuss the possibility of becoming sister cities. The council approved a motion giving Peterson permission to move forward with that.
The next Lanesboro city council meeting will be held on July 2 at 5:30 p.m.