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City Hall Updates: January 10, 2020

Post Date:01/10/2020 4:08 PM

PDF Document: City Hall Updates 1/10/2020

City Hall Updates 1/10/2020

From: Dan Wietecha, City Administrator
Date: January 10, 2020

City Anniversaries - January

James Galland, 29 years – Sgt. James Galland has served as a Patrol Sergeant for 23 of his 29 years. Throughout his career he has overseen most of HPD’s traffic operations to include, but not limited to organizing DWI, seatbelt, inattentive driving, and speed enforcement activities locally and throughout Dakota County. Galland will retire at the end of February. Congratulations!

Sandra Boesl, 27 years – Sandy has been a perennial member of the Fire Department, and is one of our most senior POC staff. We are thankful for her contributions, and her upbeat attitude. Thank you, Sandy!

Daniel Tollefson, 24 years – Officer Tollefson is the most senior patrol officer in the Police Department. With the exception of serving as an Investigator from 2001-2002, Dan has been a career patrol officer. Dan has a strong passion for golf and is our resident golf pro. Thank you for your service, Dan!

Michael Schmitz, 19 years – Officer Schmitz has been the Police Department’s K-9 handler for the past 15 years. His first K-9 partner was “Eis” (2005- 2011) and current partner “Ozzy” (2011 -Present). Mike’s skills as K-9 handler has earned him praise and respect among the region’s K-9 teams, as well as our community. Thank you!

Dean Suchy, 16 years – Dean started his career with us as a Paid-on-call Firefighter, he now serves the department as both POC, and Full Time Firefighter Paramedic. Dean currently is the lead role for our radiological emergency preparedness emergency worker decon program, along with his regular duties. Thank you to Dean for his years of service to the department, and community. Thank you!

Derek Latch, 16 years – Derek started his career with us as a Paid-on-call Firefighter, he now serves the department as both POC, and Full Time Firefighter Paramedic. Derek has a detailed approach to his work which serves him well. He also provides safety and OSHA compliance checks within our department. Thank you to Derek for his years of service to the department, and community. Thank you, Derek!

Dave Chalmers, 15 years – In 2005 Dave and his family moved back to Minnesota after spending several years between North Dakota and Oregon. He joined the City in January of that year and quickly became the face of our Engineering team in the field during our annual neighborhood construction projects. Dave has led the drafting of countless construction plan sets and overseen miles and miles of street and utility construction work in his 15 years with the City. Dave could also give any sewer film critic a run for their money, as he’s been able to enjoy viewing hours upon hours of televising videos on his computer screen 😊. Alas, all good things must come to an end and it will be bittersweet to see Dave retire this July. At the same time we’re excited for the next adventure that awaits Dave, as he and his wife Kim plan to travel the country with their beautiful travel camper! Thank you and congratulations, Dave!

Connie Lang, 14 years – Connie Lang has been serving the City since 2006 when she began as a part time employee in the Finance Department. She moved to a fulltime role in 2007. Much of the work Connie does is behind the scenes. Over the years Connie has worked on multiple items including paying the City’s invoices, balancing cash daily, and human resources. When Connie is not working she is enjoying her view of the bald eagles flying over the Mississippi River. Thank you, Connie!

Jamie Stevens, 13 years – Jamie started his career as a POC firefighter. He has moved up through the ranks, and has held the position of Full-time engineer, and currently serves as a Captain. His roles have included EMS training officer, and currently is leading our fire prevention and education program. Jamie is a tremendous asset to the department and City. Thank you, Jamie!

Chad Jensen POC and Firefighter 13 years – Chad currently serves as a Full-time engineer/Paramedic. He has served the department in many ways during his time with us. He has worked with ordering and researching EMS supplies, and equipment. He has also been a leader in maintaining and upgrading our gas detection monitors. Chad contributes to the city and the department in a large number of behind the scene projects that, we are thankful to have him in our organization. Thank you, Chad!

Joseph Cysiewski Firefighter 5 years – Joe currently serves as a full-time Engineer/Paramedic. He brings an even keel great attitude to his work; his positive approach makes him a great teammate to the rest of our staff. We thank him for his contributions’, and look forward to his bright future. Thank you, Joe!

Alan Gaylor POC 5 years – Alan serves the Fire Department with an attitude of hard work and positive approach to the mission of the department. He serves the department and city as a firefighter EMT. We are thankful for his dedication, and professionalism. Thank you, Alan!

John Jamison POC 5 years – John serves the department and City as a POC firefighter/EMT. He brings the department in a professional, and positive manner. He is very dedicated to the department. We thank him for his service. Thank you, John!

Nicole Biegel POC 4 years – Nyki serves the department and City as a POC firefighter/EMT. She brings the department in a professional, and positive manner. She is very dedicated to the department. We thank her for her service. Thank you Nyki!

Angela Neuharth POC 4 years – Angela serves the department and City as a POC firefighter/EMT. She brings the department in a professional, and positive manner. She is very dedicated to the department. We thank her for her service. Thank you, Angela!

Alana Siebenaler 3 years – Alana came in to our department with no previous experience as permit technician and hit the road running. She picked up our permitting software and the way we operate very quickly and has been an invaluable part of our team. Alana fits in well with the other ladies at the City Hall front desk and has that welcoming smile and great personality making her a valuable asset to the city’s workforce. Thank you, Alana!

Jessica Urbach 3 years – Jessica is one of two part-time receptionist that were hired when we opened the front counter in 2017. In addition to her duties of dispatching, data entry and error checking (to name but a few), Jessica plays an important role as Receptionist, being the first point of contact for callers and visitors to the police department and with an always pleasant, helpful and professional demeanor, she does it well. Happy Anniversary, Jessica!

Samuel Beuch 2 years – Officer Beuch came to us from Huron, SD after serving 5 years with the Huron Police Department. A native of Eden Prairie, Beuch is highly regarded by his peers and brings knowledge and experience which aligns with the HPD mission. Sam is an avid hunter and fisherman. Sam, thank you for your service!

Fire Department

The City of Hastings is continuing the process to fill the Fire Chief position. Twenty-four applications for the position were received, and three candidates participated in the first round interviews earlier this week. Three panels conducted interviews: a six-member community panel, a five-member Fire Department staff panel, and a four-member non-Fire staff panel. Panel members were impressed with the candidates, all who had expertise in the Fire and EMS industry.

The candidate pool has been narrowed to two finalists:
Brian Carlson – Assistant Fire Chief for the City of Burnsville
Kip Springer – Deputy Fire Chief for the City of Eagan

The two finalists will participate in a leadership assessment and will be interviewed by the Public Safety Committee of the Council (*Leifeld, Braucks, Folch) on Thursday, February 6th. It is the City’s goal to have final City Council approval of the appointment at the March 2, 2020 council meeting. Thank you to everyone who has participated in the various steps of this hiring process. Your involvement in valuable and appreciated.

Community Development

Annexation for New Residential Development

TC Land has submitted an application for annexation of 40 acres located southwest of General Sieben Drive and Northridge Drive for the development of 120 homes including both single family and villa home sites. The City Council will hold a public hearing to consider the request on February 18th. Construction of roads and utilities is expected later this year. (Preliminary concept shown at right).

 

The Confluence

Environmental work within the former Hudson Building continues. Piping for Vapor Intrusion Mitigation System has been installed and work is about halfway done in removing contaminants from wood flooring, trusses and ceilings. All crawlspace areas have been filled and a new flooring installed. The overlook within the riverfront park will continue to take shape over the winter with installation of railings and lighting. The Confluence will include 69 hotel rooms, 20 apartments, banquet facility, and a restaurant. Completion of the project is anticipated in late 2020.

Senior Housing - Schoolhouse Square

Real Estate Equities has submitted an application for the construction of a 90 unit independent living senior housing building to be located east of Green Mill at Schoolhouse Square. The Planning Commission and City Council is expected to consider the request in February.

 

Rezoning - Shepherd of the Valley Church

The Planning Commission will meet on January 13th consider a comprehensive plan amendment and rezoning to change the land use to accommodate potential future development of townhomes located east of the existing church at 1450 West 4th Street. Upon action by the Commission, the City Council will consider take action on February 3rd.

Administration

Offices Closed: City offices will be closed on January 20 in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The City Council meeting will be on Tuesday, January 21.

On Thursday, January 9, City Administrator Dan Wietecha attended the first session of the Compass Peer Group. The curriculum is based on the Baldridge Performance Excellence model – focusing on leadership, strategic planning, customer focus, measurement and analysis, workforce, operations, and results. This program will meet monthly throughout the year and is facilitated by Craig Rapp.

Parks and Recreation

 

General:

Please direct Forestry related questions to Cory Likes, Park Maintenance and Operations Supervisor at 651-480-6178 or clikes@hastingsmn.gov.

Arena:

• For a list of activities, games, or open skating hours, check the facility calendar here!
• The arena and the Hastings Hockey Assoc. hosted the annual Big Chill A and B Bantam tournament last weekend. Sixteen teams participated and drew teams from as far away as Hibbing.
• The next session of skating lessons begins on Saturday morning. Lessons continue for twelve weeks.
• The high school hockey season is going strong, the boys have home games on Saturday 1/11, Thursday 1/16 and Saturday 1/18. The next girls home game is Thursday 1/23.

Park Maintenance & Forestry:

• The Lake Rebecca aeration system is up and running. This system keeps a portion of Lake Rebecca open throughout the winter to help oxygenate the water and keep the fish alive! Please use caution on the lake when ice fishing, and good luck!
• If you encounter any hazardous conditions, or have any park or trail concerns, please don’t hesitate to call our Parks Office at 651-480-6175.

Sports & Recreation:

• Warming houses at Pioneer, Lions, and Wallin parks have re-opened.

Programming:

Ice Fishing Adventures
Saturday, January 11th
9:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Lake Rebecca Park, 415 Lock and Dam Road
Learn about ice safety, fish species, habitat and fishing techniques. Fishing gear give-a-ways every 30 minutes!
Bait, tackle, and instruction provided
Recommended for all ages
*No License needed, a DNR Waiver form has been acquired for this event.

Family Skate Night
Thursday, January 16th
7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Lions Park, 1001 5th St.
Head to Lions Park for a night of free family fun. Music, cocoa, bonfire and s’mores provided.
Recommended for all ages

PUBLIC WORKS

2020 Neighborhood Infrastructure Improvements

The Engineering Department has scheduled open house meetings and invitations have been mailed to affected property owners along the streets proposed in the 2020 Neighborhood Infrastructure Improvements areas. This year’s campaign includes 15th Street between Tyler and Pine Streets, Cannon Street, and west 22nd-25th Streets. The open house meetings will be held at Hastings Resurrection United Methodist Church on January 21st and 23rd from 4-7pm each session.

2020 Mill & Overlay

Engineering staff is hard at putting together the plans for our 2020 Mill & Overlay program. This year’s program will be anchored by Northridge Drive, with work also taking place on Stoneridge Court, 15th Street west of Wyndham Hill Drive, and South Frontage Road between Pleasant Drive and General Sieben Drive.

Boulevard Tree Trimming

A fortunate dry spell of winter precipitation has given our staff a good opportunity to go through town and trim tree limbs and branches that hang in conflict with City maintenance equipment, such as the cabins of snow plows and street sweepers.

Public Works Welcomes Josh Sirinek!

New PW operator Josh Sirinek started work with the City on December 30th. He has already been getting a variety of work tasks under his belt (such as the aforementioned tree trimming efforts – that’s Josh in the featured photo at left), is meshing well with our staff, and has already been behind the wheel of a plow helping with clearing efforts from the snow event of December 30th.

Highway 316 Project

MnDOT will soon be furnishing the City with an official Municipal Consent Package for this project. The City must schedule and conduct a public hearing within 60 days of receiving the package, and then follow up with a resolution within 90 days of the public hearing to consent to the layout, right of way acquisitions, and cost implications of the project. Staff will provide a more detailed update on this process once we receive the material and put the public hearing step on the Council’s agenda. MnDOT has reported to the City that earlier this week their right of way specialists began connecting with individual property owners who would have either permanent right of way or easements acquired from their property. This work will continue for the next couple of weeks. A link to a nice video visualization showing how the corridor would be transformed is featured on MnDOT’s Highway 316 Project website.

THRIVE

Upcoming Event: Gray Area Thinking Training

Join us for a Gray Area Thinking training event, led by Human Inclusivity trainer: Ellie Krug. 6 to 8:30 p.m. at the Hastings Golf Club. Learn how to get beyond grouping and labeling people according to race, religion, politics, and much more. This training is being offered for FREE and sponsored by THRIVE in Hastings.
Date: Tuesday, January 14
Time: 6:30 - 8 p.m.
Location: Hastings Golf Club, 2015 Westview Drive

Police Department

Thursday, January 9, 2020 was Law Enforcement Appreciation Day. A special thanks to Nancy from Calvary Christian Church for bringing us pizzas.

Personnel

Panel interviews were held this past week for the Fire Chief position. Thank you to Public Safety Advisory Commission members Dolores Pemble and Russ Rohloff, South Metro Fire Chief Mark Juelfs, Dakota County Emergency Manager Jim Iliff, Fire Chaplin Jim Bzoskie, Interim Fire Chief John Townsend, Fire Captains Jamie Stevens and Chris Paulson, Firefighters Adam Harklerode and Craig Latch, Paid-on-Call Firefighter Dave Janssen, Finance Manger Melanie Lammers, City Engineer Ryan Stempski, and Police Chief Bryan Schafer for serving on the interview panels.

Elections

Absentee Voting will begin on Friday, January 17th for the Presidential Nomination Primary to be held on Tuesday, March 3rd. Absentee voting can be done at City Hall between 8:00 am and 4:30 pm Monday – Friday or at the Dakota County Government Center. Please visit our website for more information and applications forms.

Arts & Culture Survey

Hastings Prescott Area Arts Council (HPAAC) is leading a community-wide effort to create an arts and culture plan for the community of Hastings. The plan is seen as a means to establish the status of arts, culture, and the creative economy in Hastings and to set a course for sustaining and growing this important resource and employment sector. More info is on the HPAAC website. Provide your survey input here!

Upcoming Meetings

Meetings held at City Hall unless otherwise noted

Monday, January 13
7:00 pm Planning Commission

Thursday, January 16
6:30 pm Public Safety Advisory Commission

Tuesday, January 21
7:00 pm City Council