Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility Olivia City Council Meeting Minutes - March 10, 2021 - City of Olivia, MN


Thursday, March 10, 2021


The Special Joint Meeting of the EDA and City Council of the City of Olivia, Minnesota, was called to order by EDA President Cathy Baumgartner at 12:05 P.M.

Council Members Present: Jon Hawkinson, Blanca Ferguson (via Zoom), Tom Kalahar (via zoom), George Ebbers (via zoom) and Landon Padrnos (via zoom).

EDA Members Present: Cathy Baumgartner, Rick Bonlender (via zoom), Chuck Brown (via zoom), Tom McDonnell (via zoom), Jon Hawkinson, and George Ebbers (via zoom). Steve Dirks was noted as absent.

Others present: Susie Lang, EDA Director; Dan Coughlin, City Administrator; Aaron Walton, City Attorney (via zoom); Troy Fuoss, Electric Superintendent; Jasmine Miller, Planning and Zoning Administrator; Amber Dale, Utility Accounts Manager; Barbara Marks, Engan Associates (via zoom); Jason Murray, David Drown & Associates (via zoom); and Justin Black, SEH Engineering (via zoom).

Agenda Additions / Approval

Motion by Hawkinson, second by McDonnell: to approve the agenda as presented. A roll call was taken. Motion passed unanimously.

Approval of EDA Meeting Minutes of February 10 and March 4, 2021

Motion by Ebbers, second by Hawkinson: approve EDA meeting minutes of February 10 and March 4, 2021 as presented. A roll call was taken. Motion passed unanimously.

Closed Session: Discussion of Possible Sale of Real Property

President Baumgartner announced that in accordance with MN Statute 13.05D Subd 3c(1)) and with the unanimous consent of the Council and EDA members, she was declaring a closed session so that the members of both governing boards could discuss the possible sale of real property identified by the following property identification numbers: #35-05255-00, 35-05260-00, 35-05261-00, and 35-05275-00.

Hearing no objections, President Baumgartner declared a closed session at 12:09 p.m. and asked those not directly involved in the discussions to excuse themselves from the meeting.

Upon conclusion of the closed session discussions, President Baumgartner reopened the meeting at 12:55 p.m.

Mayor Hawkinson stated that the Council had a number of items they should formally address before concluding their portion of the meeting including: affirming the Council’s support of using a TIF process as the mechanism to use to repay the City for its involvement in the proposed property sale and its associated elements; that staff and consultant staff be authorized to present their proposals to the Olivia Chrysler owners for their review and approval; direct staff and consultant staff to undertake a decertification of the existing TIF district on two of the vacant parcels being considered for sale and the establishment of a new redevelopment TIF district on the parcel containing the building currently being utilized by Olivia Chrysler; authorize Barbara Marks and Engen and Associates to proceed with part 2 of the previously adopted facility predesign and design agreement; and for he and President Baumgartner be given the ok to sign off on small to modest process items related to these elements in order to maintain timely forward momentum with these matters.

Councilor Kalahar joked that he would be happy to make the motion to authorize the items mentioned by the Mayor as long as he did not have to recite that list of items once again. The Council expressed support for the moving ahead with the elements the Mayor had outlined.

Motion by Kalahar, second by Ferguson: Express formal support for a property sale plan that includes the City recouping its costs via a redevelopment tax increment financing district over time in accordance with a formal TIF agreement; authorize the timely decertification of the existing TIF district covering two of the parcels involved in the proposed sale; authorize work to begin the process of creating a new redevelopment tax increment financing district on the parcel containing the current location of Olivia Chrysler’s building; authorize Barbara Marks and Engan & Associates to proceed with the development and project phase of the previously approved retainer agreement related to the proposed new electric utility department building; and grant Mayor Hawkinson and EDA President Baumgartner the authority to sign off on small to moderate process items related to the sale of property and/or electric utility department building planning process. Motion passed unanimously.

Attorney Aaron Walton mentioned that the EDA would have to consider an amendment to the existing land sale agreement in order to allow for a lump sum, up-front payment rather than the existing language that assumed payments over a period of time. The EDA members indicated that they were supportive of such a change. Walton also noted that he will need to work with Financial Advisor Jason Murray to get more detailed financial info so to begin to craft a real estate purchase agreement to be presented to the owners of Olivia Chrysler.

President Baumgartner thanked the Mayor, Council and staff for taking the time out of their schedules to meet with the EDA Board in order to help discuss and consider these matters.

City Council Adjournment

Mayor Hawkinson similarly thanked President Baumgartner, EDA Commissioners, staff and consultant staff for their assistance with the process they had jointly worked through.

With no further items for the City Council to consider, Mayor Hawkinson asked for a motion to adjourn the Council’s portion of the EDA meeting.

Motion by Ebbers, second by Padrnos: Adjourn City Council portion of the special joint meeting at 1:03 p.m. Motion passed unanimously.

BR&E Committee Update

Rick Bonlender provided a brief update on the inaugural meeting of the committee. He said he was excited about working with the individuals that are assisting with this phase of the project and felt that they had a “very deep bench” when it came to knowledge and experience in this realm.

Updates and Related Items

EDA Director Susie Lang provided updates on a few items she was presently working on.

President Baumgartner asked Jon Hawkinson about the status of the “statement of values” item that he was working on. The Mayor indicated that a number of organizations had expressed support for the project and that there were only a few more groups he needed to hear back from. It was noted that the hope was to create a gap in time between the incidents that kicked off this statement of values effort and the publishing of it so to not have it become a flashpoint of new angst and controversy in and of itself. The President thanked the Mayor for his efforts with this particular matter.

EDA Adjournment

With no additional items to discuss, President Baumgartner again thanked everyone for their participation.

Motion by Brown, second by McDonnell: to adjourn the meeting 1:20 P.M. Motion passed unanimously.

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