The Bemidji City Council carried a number of items unanimously in a fairly short meeting Monday.
Among those were two more motions concerning the City Manager’s performance evaluation coming up this month.
Mayor Jorge Prince entertained a lengthy motion calling for a non-annual performance evaluation permitted by statute, and then a separate motion for legal counsel, and the Flaherty & Hood lawyer Brandon Fitzsimmons, to be present at this special council meeting.
The motion was moved by council member Josh Peterson and seconded by council member Ron Johnson.
The council also unanimously approved improvements to Algoma Park, matching a grant from the DNR using $130,000 in American Rescue Plan funding.
The city had about $1.1 million available in that fund, but the unanimous decision to seek the grant and use the funds for the grant match, as stated by Prince, was due to the parks’ heavy use during COVID-19.
These improvements would include an expanded playground with inclusive equipment, like a zip-line, and other amenities.
The council also approved a letter of support for ranked-choice voting legislation by a 4-2 vote, with Mayor Prince and council member Peterson voting against it.
This legislative item by Fair Vote MN was recommended by the Charter Commission, and if passed in St. Paul, the ranked-choice voting for municipal elections would be brought back to the Charter Commission.
After the Commission amends the city’s Charter, the choice for ranked choice voting would be brought before council.
The council would have to unanimously approve the change, or it would be put before the voters as a ballot question.