The Clarkfield H. A. Hagg Task Force met last week. They had three items on the agenda. First, they approved a resolution to set up the option of creating a TIF district. They also discussed a few different options for grants. The director of the RDC recommended that the task force look at Appleton and Milan and see what they did with their high schools. Milan has an Art Center, a cafeteria, a hall to rent out, gymnasium, loom room for quilt making and art, thrift shop, kitchen area and more. Appleton has Swift County Concert Band practices in their auditorium, fundraisers for community events, a memorabilia room for events, one classroom wing is used to Lac qui Parle Head Start program, a child care center and junior high basketball, basically a very active community center.
The community center angle has been repeatedly mentioned in the Clarkfield task force public meetings.The memorabilia idea also picked up. Appleton lost their identity when the school went to Lac qui Parle, so the people visiting are people that attended or graduated from the school. Clarkfield can do the same thing, since the trophies from the school are currently sitting in a basement. The board is working on figuring out a trip to visit both schools.
In other news:
Laurie Johnson and Tom Oftedahl of the Minnesota Machinery Museum returned to the board with quotes for repairing the roof. One problem is the low bid did not include an engineering fee, and also came with a lower quality finish for the steel. The board approved giving the museum "up to" $85,000, and the rest will be covered by donations. If surplus donations are raised, the difference will be given back to the county. Gary Johnson voted no.
Devin Knutson has been hired as an intern for the IT Department. She is contracted for a minimum of 300 hours. She will be Dennis Pederson's right hand. She recently graduated from Minnesota West with an AAS in tech support, and a certification in computer repair.
The board discussed having a booth at the county fair. One idea that's been used in the past is a dunk tank. The board will look into availability for scheduling.
The Community Bikes Program has been signed in contract. This is the shared bike program first used in Benson. There will be three bikes available on a first come first served basis, as well as a stand to repair them.
After discussion about uniform purchases for city and county employees, Ron Antony asked the question about where the line should be between saving a few dollars vs using a local business in a bidding situation. The board agreed to make that a "direction," not an official motion, but a general philosophy.
The board approved the leasing of a new Postage Machine and Meter rental, contingent on the current company agreeing to end the current lease. In the contract it's required to give a 90 day notice, but mistakenly only 60 days notice were given. The board will find out in a few weeks if the cancelation went through. If not, the lease extends for another year.