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Dassel forms seven-member law enforcement advisory

January 14, 2008

By Roz Kohls
Staff Writer

The Dassel City Council formed a seven-member Law Enforcement Advisory Board, including citizens Duane Benoit, Jonathan Haapala and Denise Alger.

The others members of the board will be Mayor Ava Flachmeyer, City Administrator Myles McGrath, City Council Member Pat Haapala, and a representative from Meeker County Sheriff’s Office, the council decided during its organizational meeting last Monday.

The council considered having a five-member board, but then City Council Member Bob Wilde pointed out a seven-member board could have all three citizen volunteers on it instead.

Council Member Pat Haapala also questioned whether it was appropriate being on the advisory board with her son, Jonathan. McGrath said, though, that their relationship probably would have no effect on their decisions.

The council also added Farmers State Bank of Darwin to its list of official repositories because it opened a new branch in Dassel last week.

The Dassel Cokato Enterprise Dispatch was designated official newspaper.

The council also added a transit committee, consisting of Wilde and alternate Council Member Al Dunn. Wilde again was appointed to be acting mayor, part of the personnel committee, and the Dassel Area Historical liaison.

Haapala was again appointed planning commission liaison, to the community education board and the Red Rooster committee. Dunn also was appointed to the Red Rooster committee.

Council Member Bob Lalone was appointed to the personnel committee, and to the DC Baseball Association.

The National Incident Management Board will consist of chairman, Fire Chief Dale Grochow; David Johnson, assistant fire chief; Rob Nudell, Dassel Elementary School; Bill Ward, Lakeside Health Care Center; Meeker County Sheriff Mike Hirman, public safety; Public Works Director Dave Scepaniak, McGrath and Flachmeyer.

The Dassel Safety Committee will be Brian Gillman, fire department representative; Walter Hansen, public works representative; Marvin Vetsch, liquor store manager; Flachmeyer and McGrath.

Judy Barka was reappointed as the city assessor, and Mid-Minnesota Development Commission and its certified building inspection division was reappointed as the building inspector.

The council also approved the fire department officers. They are Grochow, Dave Johnson, Jon Trotter as captain, Kurt Mortenson as assistant captain, Kevin Carlen as lieutenant, Dennis Johnson as training officer, Gillman as treasurer, and Mitch Rawlins as secretary.

In addition, the council made some changes in the Dassel fee schedule for 2008. Community room rental was raised to $40 from $30 for residents, to $60 from $50 for non-residents, and the damage deposit to $50 from $30. However, for groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous, the city has a “gentleman’s agreement,” not to raise the rent for them, Lalone said.

The council raised the damage deposit for renting the Dassel Area Historical Society museum to $200 from $100.

Assessment search fee was raised to $20 from $15. Conditional use permits, variances, and rezoning requests were each raised to $175 from $150.

The water accessibility charge and sewer accessibility charge were each raised to $1,500 from $1,250 per unit. This 2008 charge is still $1,000 under what Cokato is charging, McGrath said.