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February 8, 2023

1/20/2023 10:39:00 AM
Lindstrom mayor, council member resign immediately

At the end of the Lindstrom City Council meeting January 19, Mayor Kevin Stenson and Council member Laurie Burington announced their intention to resign immediately. They left city government as of midnight Thursday.

The remaining three members then placed newly-elected Council member Judy Chartrand into the role of acting mayor.

There is a work session that was previously scheduled for January 25 and the empty seat situation will presumably be reviewed along with multiple subjects already slated for that special session.

Mayor Stenson also served Lindstrom as chief of the Lakes Area Police Department and he stated that after three decades in the public eye, he would like some personal space and time for family and friends. He added his “convictions” are at odds with what he perceives to be the direction of the council now, and he wished officeholders much success.

Burington spoke next saying she has met and worked with some wonderful people and that resignation was not an easy decision. She too said the path the council seems to be headed on is not what she can agree with.

Newly-elected council member Brian Norelius commented that he had really looked forward to working with the two; and even though he was aware differing approaches were becoming evident he felt the coming together of opposing views would be a benefit in the end for the city.

Chartrand said as a “duty to the city” she would accept the acting mayor post, adding the resignations had “shocked” her.

Lindstrom saw its 16-year city administrator resign in December and before the resignations were announced, council did vote to bring a professional recruitment firm on-board to help with both job description updating and finding administrator candidates.

In other news...
• An item concerning a potential Tax Increment Financing District request revision for the Olinda Trail apartments project was tabled for new council members to get more information.

• Chief Bill Schlumbohm advised council the department has one new officer in a training program currently who will be filling a vacancy.

• A letter of concerns about a proposed Maple Street reconstruction plan was read aloud into the record and council heard this is on the work session agenda for Jan 25. Residents signed onto the letter desiring sidewalk on both sides of the street and not narrowing the paved surface among other design elements.

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