Monthly EDA report.

The October EDA Board Meeting began with the update report on the Little Sprouts Learning Center from Brad DeVos of St. Peter Business Services.

I gave the Board an update on the corner of Highways 4 and 14 property. Due to the recent rainy weather the water line has not been installed at this point, but should be by the time this article goes to press. The landscaping will then begin on the property yet this fall, again weather permitting.

I reported to the Board that we have a date set to meet with representatives from Peace, Light, and Stone to discuss the cemetery property the EDA owns in Mitchell, S.D.

The details on revising and updating the criteria for the EDA loan and rehab programs was discussed. The Board’s decision was to streamline the programs and look to combine those that we are able, since the criteria is similar on most of the programs. My plan is to submit a preliminary rough draft to the Board and then have the revised editions of the programs approved and be ready for distribution in 2020.

Three bids have been submitted for the demolition of the former Orchid Inn facility. All bids require that the City of Sleepy Eye be responsible for the asbestos abatement prior to the demolition, so I have been contacting companies to get bids on the cost of the abatement. I also have researched the DEED grant and loan programs that will be applied for to help with cost reduction of disposing of the asbestos contained in the building. Asbestos bids that are submitted will be considered by the Board for recommendation and approval to move forward with the project.

There was no new information to discuss regarding the Del Monte closure. I continue to be in contact with DEED, and we wait for information on the future of the property to see how, if possible, the EDA might be involved in rehabilitation or restructuring.

The Board evaluated this past year’s new monthly meetings format, which included having one meeting per quarter with an extended time format to cover the numerous additional agenda topics that come up periodically over the course of the year. The Board felt that they would continue this in 2020, with the possibility of adjusting the start time for the extended meetings. The board typically meets on the fourth Tuesday of each month at noon.

Finally, I shared information with the Board on the upcoming Welcoming Communities informational meeting for our community and others in Brown County. This is the program developed using the grant money awarded to Sleepy Eye from Blue Cross & Blue Shield and is being administered by Region 9. The informational meeting will take place at the Event Center on Tuesday, Nov. 5, beginning at 5:30 p.m. I have already received responses from almost 50 members of our community who will attend this first meeting. After this initial meeting, there will be monthly opportunities to continue participating in these community meetings, beginning in January and going through May, and then concluding in September after taking a summer recess.

As always, if you have any questions, or want more information on current EDA activities please feel free to contact me: 794-5636 or