Sleepy Eye Mayor’s message for December

Deb Moldaschel
The Sleepy Eye Herald Dispatch

Congratulations to Christina Andres and Scott Krzmarzick who were elected to the City Council in November. I look forward to working with them as they bring their ideas for the City’s consideration. They will assume their seats in January.

Mayor Wayne Pelzel

The Holiday Lights in Motion group have done an excellent job decorating Sportsmen’s Park. It truly is a Christmas spectacular. Thanks to all the committee members and all the volunteers who put in hundreds of hours to make the park come alive with color. Your actions help to make Sleepy Eye a destination. The home decorations also seem more spectacular than ever. It’s a joy to see.

One particularly noteworthy item on the December City Council meeting agenda was the final approval of the 2021 budget. Most of you received your “Tax Proposal 2021” from Brown County in the last days. The amount stated on your proposal for the City reflects the amount your City tax will be if this budget was approved.

This community extends its most heartfelt thanks to our health care providers in this difficult time. Not only do these doctors, nurses, lab techs and EMTs put themselves at risk as they care for the sick among us, but they also put their families at risk as well. It seems a little trivial to just say “thank you,” but it is one thing we can do. So, thank you! To each of you who provide care, our appreciation for what you do is significant.

As we prepared for the December City Council meeting it was clear this meeting had to be virtual. And we planned for it be televised on the community access channel 8 as well. 

Getting the Council meetings televised was a particularly frustrating process that took months. In an attempt to keep the costs of this technological effort down, it truly presented more challenges than anyone realized. Before the meeting it would function perfectly and then during the meeting, the technology left everyone down. Hiring the expensive professionals took care of business. Now that televising the meetings has been achieved, COVID-19 has forced the need to go to a virtual. So, the new challenge became a “televised virtual meeting.” The professionals expected to have this ready for the December meeting but it looks like it will be January, now.

City Manager Bob Elston and I will roll out a planning strategy to each of the City’s boards and commissions that will give the City Council more effective information to be used in the ongoing annual budgeting process. Each board and commission will prepare a five-year plan, listing each capital expenditure and major improvements, as well as the cost they see coming and the year it will need to be done. This process will give the City Manager and Council more effective information for better planning as they prioritize spending and manage the City’s finances.