October 13, 2011 at 8:45 a.m.

Unanimity doesn't extend to filling council seat at Monday's meeting

Unanimity doesn't extend to filling council seat at Monday's meeting
Unanimity doesn't extend to filling council seat at Monday's meeting

The regular North Branch City Council meeting got off on a warm and fuzzy note with community deeds recognized and awards presented by council to an Eagle Scout and to the city wastewater crew, which won its 17th state award for compliance with the Pollution Control Agency's demanding standards in municipal wastewater management.

Congratulations Cory Bergerson, lead operator; Kyle Henery, operator and a pat on the back to Public Works Supervisor Shawn Williams.

Council also voted to okay variances for two residential accessory structures, to be placed in front yards rather than equal with the house front or further back. The special conditions were that lot topography hindered placement and one was an excessively large lot. Neither shed will be a detriment to neighborhood aesthetics, council agreed.

Agreement was in the air. But then things went south.

On three motions the council deadlocked on nominations to fill the city's empty council seat. Kathy Blomquist motioned for Lorraine Moeller, Ken Judnich and Joel McPherson and Ron Lindquist motioned for Kevin Orf. All had been interviewed for the seat upon application deadline.

Voting went 2-2 on all nominations, so they died.

Mayor Oehlers stated during a deadlock on an appointment like this state law allows the mayor to appoint, which she did. Joel McPherson will take the oath of office at a future meeting.

A reminder:

North Branch is currently in the top five of municipal departments nationwide in a contest where they could win public works-related equipment. Contestants create a short video and voters can vote for their favorite many times.

Go to the website http:/hachbig picture.com/vote. The contest ends November 13.

The North Branch Fire relief Association has organized a hay ride and haunted house experience at the fire hall in North Branch as a fundraiser. Come October 28, 29 and 30 between the hours of dusk to 11 p.m.

Admission is $8, or $7 and a non-perishable food item donation. Fun for all ages.


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