A proposal to put a 3-foot tall Native-American hoop dancer bronze statue in the Walker Rock Garden will not happen any time soon, as the Walker City Council voted down the idea at the June 3 meeting.

The Park Advisory Board made a recommendation to the council that the statue be placed on top of a rock without any volunteer names engraved on it.

During the discussion portion of the meeting, Councilor Gary Wilkening asked, “I thought we said we weren’t going to put up any more statues?”

Char Moore said this statue will create some unity with the Indian nation.

Otto Ringle, who received recently receiving a donation from the Leech Lake Band for the statue, spoke for a couple of minutes in support of it.

“I don’t think we have too many statues ... and donors who made this statue [possible] need to be recognized,” he said.

“When you start adding donor plaques it becomes a distraction,” Councilor Jim Senenfelder said. “I don’t think we need to make it look like advertising.”

Ringle noted that businesses depend on advertising.

“You put us between a rock and a hard place by collecting donations for this,” Mayor Jed Shaw told Ringle, adding that donations are suppose to go to the city. Ringle was told that he shouldn’t have been collecting money before the council voted in favor of the project.

Ringle didn’t like the idea of placing the statue in the Rock Garden, and thought it should be put between the new pavilion and Rock Garden with a plaque recognizing all the donors.

A motion and a second to approve the statue died when no one voted in favor of it. The council opted to send it back to the Park Advisory Board for reconsideration.

The meeting lasted less than an hour and also included recognition of the Bike Friendly Walker Committee by the League of American Bicyclists for receiving the Bicycle Friendly Business Champion award. BikeMn Executive Director Dorian Grilley attended the meeting and presented the award to the council.

A public meeting to hear comments on the proposed adoption of ordinance 2019-02 — adding transitional housing standards to the city code was suppose to be held but was rescheduled  to a future council meeting. A public notice for the future hearing will be posted once a hearing date is determined.

In other city business, the council:

Approved a request from accounting department to transfer $569 from Fund 106 (community digital sign) to the general fund to pay for the property insurance for the digital sign from May 1 through May 1 of next year.

Approved one-day liquor license for Walker Rotary Club for Fourth of July, contingent upon receiving certificate of liability.

Passed resolution certifying delinquent nuisance enforcement expenses for past due snow removal to the 2020 tax rolls.

Approved sending Carol Longfellow to a records clerk training Nov. 6 in Arden Hills, and to attend round table discussion on updates, legislative changes for data practices Jan. 8 in Arden Hills, both at a cost of wages and mileage.

Approved Walker Planning Commission Board of Adjustments meeting minutes for April 29.

Approved resignation of Richard Hansen from the Planning Commission Board of Adjustments.

Approved advertising for the open Planning Commission seat that is open to any Walker resident or property owner within the city limits.

Adopted an ordinance amending Signs of the Walker City Code.

Approved resolution authorizing summary publication of ordinance 2019-03.

Approved a conditional use permit for dirt moving of less than 50 cubic yards (non-shore or bluff impact) with several findings of facts and conditions.

Awarded the Airport Access Road and Parking Lot Rehabilitation project to Anderson Brothers Company, contingent on reception of the FAA and MnDOT Aeronautics grants.

Anderson Brothers submitted a bid of $115,500, more than $8,000 less than the second bidder.

The FAA will pay 90 percent of the project and 5 percent will come from MnDOT Aeronautics, with the city paying the remaining amount.

Approved amended contract with Short Elliott Hendrickson, Inc. (SEH), that includes construction engineering, administration and observation for the Access Road and Parking Lot Rehabilitation project at Walker Airport.

Approved the Park Advisory Board minutes for April 23.

Approved application from Walker Community Ed to use the upper and lower city park from Summer Rec from June 10 to 20, and July 8-18,from 9 a.m. to noon, for about 60 participants, contingent upon receiving a certificate of liability.

Approved application from Walker Rotary, Lions, American Legion and Youth Hockey for use of the upper and lower park for July 4 from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., contingent upon receiving a certificate of liability. Set-up will begin July 3 and clean-up will be July 5.

Approved Park Advisory Board request to have the Cultural Alliance form a Community Cultural Alliance, independent of the city umbrella.

Approved a quote of $21,260 from Bruce Beckley Construction for replacement of the lower city park pavilion that will match the pavilion near the Rock Garden.

Approved ordinance 2018-04 that amends Chapter 22 Parks and Recreation and Chapter 24 Streets, Sidewalks and other Public Places.

Approved resolution authorizing summary publication of ordinance 2019-04 that amends Chapter 22 Parks and Recreation and Chapter 24 Streets, Sidewalks and other Public Places.

Accepted letter of resignation from Andrea Johnson from the Park Advisory Board.

Approved advertising for the open Park Advisory Board seat that is open to a Walker resident.

Discussed the definition of “restaurant” for on-sale wine and intoxicating liquor licenses within the city code.

Walker has 11 bar licenses within the city limits, but none that just offer one to four entrees.

After a few minutes of discussion, the city will develop a new policy, possibly using parts of a policy used by the city of Minneapolis.


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