Bemidji City Council votes 5-2 to stick to city policy of no connection without annexation

The Bemidji City Council passed a motion in a 5-2 vote last night to abide by the city’s longstanding policy of no connection to municipal sewer and water without annexation.

Council members Josh Peterson and Audrey Thayer were the nay votes, but after over an hour of discussion and more details being brought to light by staff, Mayor Jorge Prince summarized that offering sewer and water without annexation could put the city in a difficult position in the future.

Ruttger’s silence about the process was also noted in discussion by Council Member Emelie Rivera.

Northern Township held some meetings last fall to gather input from residents about incorporating, claiming overwhelming consensus of the residents’ favor of becoming a new city.

Part of the process includes asking for support from neighboring municipalities, with the entire process believed to take 1-2 years.

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