Baxter City Council: Confirms agreement with new city administrator
BAXTER--A new city administrator for Baxter will begin May 1. The city council confirmed negotiations with Bradley Chapulis and the city's personnel committee culminated in a signed employment agreement by the candidate. The council approved the ...
BAXTER-A new city administrator for Baxter will begin May 1.
The city council confirmed negotiations with Bradley Chapulis and the city's personnel committee culminated in a signed employment agreement by the candidate.
The council approved the contract with Chapulis starting in about a month's time. His annual salary was set at $110,000.
Chapulis is currently the community and economic development director for the southwestern Minnesota city of Worthington. He's been with Worthington since 1998, starting as planning and economic development manager before moving to the director's position in 2003. From 1995 to 1998, Chapulis was planner for Mason City, Iowa. Chapulis has a bachelor's degree in community and regional planning from Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa.
Council member Steve Barrows recognized the mayor, fellow council members and city staff for work in finding a new administrator and singled out staff, praising quality of service in the months without an administrator. Kelly Steele, assistant city administrator, took on the interim duties after former city administrator Gordon Heitke retired on April 29, 2016.
In other business, the council:
Approved a land sale for property mostly encompassed by the stormwater pond off Excelsior Road near the entrance to the Northland Arboretum. It's a relatively complex arrangement aimed at allowing a dynamic monument sign with an electronic message for the arboretum. The city approved initiating the land sale to Crow Wing County to allow the county to enter a long-term lease with the arb allowing construction of a permanent sign. The property is on the northeast side of the intersection of Conservation Drive and Excelsior Road. The agreement includes maintaining the stormwater use except for the land dedicated for the proposed sign near the intersection.
Matthew Hill, Northland Arboretum's executive director, attended the meeting and said fundraising will be needed to offset the sign's cost but he was hopeful a sign could be in place by fall. Hill noted the dynamic sign would allow the arboretum another way to let people know about its programming and events. To this point, the arboretum has used temporary signs at that location.
Hill is leaving the arboretum to become the park and recreation director with the city of Nisswa. He started at the arboretum in December of 2015. Hill is expected to begin his new job in Nisswa April 3. At Nisswa, Hill succeeds Alex Hondl, who resigned this winter after being in the position for a little more than two years. Hondl accepted the parks and trails maintenance supervisor job in Baxter.
Baxter Mayor Darrel Olson said the question of the sign has gone back and forth for years through multiple executive directors at the arboretum. Olson said it has taken time and effort to secure. Now, Olson said, the project appears to be in the homestretch.
No one from the public spoke during the public hearing on vacating the right of way. The council unanimously approved the motion.