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Concerns raised about another building project in Wadena

Jeff Hoemberg, left, Brandon Pearson and Nick Grabe received service awards at the Jan. 9 meeting of the Wadena City Council. Hoemberg has been with the Wadena Fire Department for 20 years. Sgt. Pearson is a 10-year veteran of the Wadena Police Department. Grabe was honored for 10 years of service on the fire department. Brian Hansel/Pioneer Journal1 / 4
Cody Yglesias received a plaque for 10 years of service on the Wadena Fire Department at last Tuesday's Wadena City Council meeting. Brian Hansel/Pioneer Journal2 / 4
Charles Rowe voiced his concerns last Tuesday in the Wadena City Council chambers about a petition to vacate streets, alleys and utility easements in a portion of the Bretz Addition, located in the southwest portion of Wadena. Brian Hansel/Pioneer Journal3 / 4
The Green Gable Townhomes at 1114 King Ave. SW were built by the Roach Family. The Bretz Addition project being planned by the same family is expected to be built along similar lines. Brian Hansel/Pioneer Journal4 / 4

A public hearing on a petition to vacate streets, alleys and utility easements in a portion of the Bretz Addition drew a crowd last Tuesday to the Wadena City Council chambers.

The Bretz Addition is a located west of Tapley Park in the southwestern portion of the city.

The petition, submitted by Builder Terry Roach, asked the city to vacate streets, alleys and utility easements so they could begin a future building project there. But not everyone is onboard with the plan.

Charles Rowe, a neighborhood resident, offered a comment on behalf of some residents concerning plans for another apartment complex being proposed. The Roach Family previously built the Green Gable Townhomes on 11th Street SW and King Ave.

Rowe cited concerns the group shared about more vehicular traffic mixing with a large number of children using Kingsley Avenue to go to and from Tapley Park.

"What we don't need on Kingsley (Avenue) is more traffic," Rowe said.

Following the public meeting, the council approved the resolution. Actual construction work is not anticipated until after a building plan is submitted to the council.

"It frees him up to position his building how he needs to," Wadena Mayor George Deiss said.

Committee to look at standards for airport services

Council members Jessie Gibbs and Deb Wiese, Public Works Director Dan Kovar and City Attorney Jeff Pederson will be serving on a committee to study minimum standards for an airport services policy.

Inspections last year of the Wadena Municipal Airport by MnDOT Aviation and the Federal Aeronautics Administration (FAA) prompted a recommendation from the state that the city has such a policy in place.

Five receive Years of Service Awards

City employees tabbed to receive Years of Service Awards at the meeting were Jeff Hoemberg (20 years), Kevin Ross (15 years) and Brandon Pearson, Weldon Crider and Cody Yglesias (10 years).

Hoemberg and Yglesias are members of the Wadena Fire Department. Ross runs the municipal golf course, Crider belongs to the street department and Pearson is a sergeant on the police force.

In other action the council approved:

• Resolutions for designating the Wadena Pioneer Journal as the official newspaper, the day and time for council meetings, the appointment of Bruce Uselman as acting mayor in the absence of Mayor Deiss, the official depositories for city funds and the city prosecuting attorney.

• Leaving the city investment policy in place.

• Reappointing Bonnie Ealy, Julie Deiss and Gingie Schmitt to the Library Board and Ryan Damlo to the Wadena Housing and Redevelopment Board. The council also approved the advertisement of one position on each of the boards.

• BN Park sidewalk quotes.

• Hiring Kacie Haataja and Doug Blazek for part-time maintenance positions at the Wellness Center.

• A public hearing in February on the Freshwater Education Easement

• Paying city firefighters per hour for training instead of a flat amount per day

• A temporary liquor license for a February function of the Partners for a Healthy Wadena

• A furniture purchase by the city from the First National Bank Building. Each city department receiving furniture will be finding room in their budgets for the items they receive.

• Giving Phil Martin of Bolton and Menk Engineering permission to put the Hemlock Avenue NW project out on bids.

• Suspending an operating license and denying the license renewal application of Abomination Tattoo.

• Granting a temporary liquor request by Kevin Ross for a Feb. 23 function at Pizza Ranch.