The Sleepy Eye City Council meeting was held electronically on Tuesday evening, May 12.
The Sleepy Eye City Council meeting, held electronically on Tuesday evening, May 12, began with the same action as last month’s meeting — adoption of a resolution establishing the unfeasibility of in-person meetings. However, the council declined to extend the Mayor’s Declaration of Local Emergency, the concensus being it was likely not necessary.
The first item of city was consideration of a resolution awarding the sale of $6,105,000 General Obligation Refunding Bonds. George Eilertson, Northland Securities, reviewed information provided to the council in their meeting materials. Eilertson said the city’s bond rating of AA, and the market’s cooperation with low interest rates, along with the council’s previous resolution to allow the Mayor and City Manager to lock in interest rates, led to Tuesday night’s request for a resolution of approval for the bond sale.
The bonds being refinanced included hospital bonds and various city improvement bonds, at an effective interest rate of 2.3%, providing a savings of $545,617.
The council approved liquor license renewals, which take effect July 1 and approved a refund of the current year’s fee, prorated for the number of months the business is closed.
Mayor Wayne Pelzel asked the council to consider a Lake Improvement Project — a flow study of sediment entering the lake — to be conducted by Water Resources Center, Minnesota State University, Mankato and an MSU, Mankato project team. The cost for the study is approximately $70,000. Mayor Pelzel said the city has $70,000 in the budget for the lake and the project could be spread over two years. He said a grant has been applied for to cover cost of doing any remediation work, but it would not pay for the study.
Councilor Larry Braun expressed concern about spending money now. He mentioned possible money problems for the hospital and the event center (due to it being shut down). Braun said he is concerned about spending during the pandemic and made motion to freeze spending for two years. The motion died for lack of a second.
A motion to do the study and spread the cost over two years, made by Gary Windschitl, seconded by JoAnn Schmidt, passed 4-1 with Braun voting no.
Elston asked the council to discuss the Aquatic Center season — a short season/no season? Elston said most area towns have decided to close. Public Works Director Mike Hardin said the League of Cities is having a meeting to provide guidance on decisions like this. Because they can’t open now, the council decided to consider the question at a special meeting on May 20 (called for an assessment hearing). Elston thought the pool could be open within two to three weeks after deciding to do so.