Milaca city leaders addressed a gathering of Chamber of Commerce members and other area residents and organizations at a State of the City luncheon last Tuesday afternoon.
City Manager Greg Lerurd shared updates on the Rec Park bridge and dam projects that are on-going. While the old walking bridge has been removed and the new structure installed, the city has been waiting for the weather to cooperate for the finishing touches. The removal of the old concrete dam, however, has been postponed for the time being.
“The delay is not due to the city,” Lerud said, adding that the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources still had a few details to hammer out. “It will be a very attractive restoration when it’s all done.”
Lerud also mentioned that Milaca is in its third year of providing administrative services to the city of Ogilvie and said that partnership has been going well.
A recent audit of the city’s finances has determined Milaca has maintained a AA credit rating for bonds, saving it thousands of dollars by being able to borrow at just 1.5 to 2 percent interest.
“That’s something I’m personally very proud of,” Lerud said.
Another work in progress is the expansion of the Fairview Clinic in Milaca with the addition of two doctors. The current North Memorial Ambulance building will be converted for the clinic’s use due to those additional doctors. In order to keep the ambulance services local, however, a new space will be constructed for the paramedics at the planned new Milaca Fire Hall.
“By keeping them here, that’s a direct benefit to everybody versus moving them to Princeton,” Lerud said.
Mayor Pete Pedersen reflected on where the city has been and said he was hopeful about where it is going.
“I think we had a very good year in 2012,” Pedersen said. “And the 2013 budget does not raise any taxes.”
He said he was proud of the “modest” increases in local taxes during the past 10 years.
For the full story, see the Thursday, April 25 print edition of the Times.