First potential code of conduct discussed for Bemidji City Council

The Bemidji City Council discussed establishing a code of conduct during their work session Monday night.

The council opted to use a free service as part of their membership with the League of Minnesota Cities with facilitator Aimee Gourlay.

Gourlay explained the value of establishing a code of conduct the council could all agree to.

The two-and-a-half-hour discussion covered different priority areas identified through anonymous staff and council surveys, as well as a draft code of conduct created by some city staff members.

After initial introductions, Ward 5’s Lynn Eaton spoke on his background as a civil engineer and how he’d work as part of a team to make decisions.

Ward 2’s Josh Peterson expressed that the voters hold the council accountable for their conduct.

The Bemidji Charter Commission recommended the council create a code of conduct for itself earlier in the year, which, according to Mayor Jorge Prince, was initially discussed for the first time in 2019.

The council did not take formal action in their meeting and planned to bring back facilitator Gourlay for another discussion.

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