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Trygve Karl acting mayor of Akeley after Jerry Tatro resigns

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Trygve Karl acting mayor of Akeley after Jerry Tatro resigns
Park Rapids Minnesota PO Box 111 56470

The city of Akeley is without a mayor.

Former Mayor Jerry Tatro submitted his resignation July 28 because he’d moved out of the city limits.


Council member Trygve Karl is now acting mayor, but he will be there only until the November election. The city declared a vacancy Wednesday night at its meeting.

Council member Brian Hitchcock filed for the mayor’s position and will run unopposed in November in a special election.

Karl will run for his old seat. Billy Krotzer, a firefighter, has filed for the council seat being vacated by Hitchcock. Bobbie Emery has filed for her seat, which she won in a mid-term election last year.

None of the four have opposition.

In other business, the council:

  • Heard a pitch by Jacob Emmeck about purchasing a new fire truck. The firefighter talked about a $136,000 first-strike mini-engine the East Hubbard County Fire Department would like to add to its fleet.

Three of the four entities of the fire district have approved the $136,000 purchase, including Akeley Township, Badoura Township and White Oak Township.

The department would use it for house fires, car crashes and basic brush fires, he said. Emmeck said the department responds to less than ten residential fires a year.

But the truck shoots foam, which weighs less and “makes water wetter,” according to Emmeck.

“Foam starves a fire from oxygen,” he told the board.

There would be less firefighter time on the scene if a dwindling fire could be sprayed with foam and left, he added. “You coat it with foam and it sticks,” he said.

And with a foam sprayer, two people could respond to a fire call, he said.

The department has been operating with a 1997 Dodge truck which is often maxed out with equipment weight.

A separate trailer must be used to haul rescue equipment.

“You can’t find used trucks like this,” Emmeck told the department after Hitchcock offered a motion totable the discussion until the financial details are better ironed out.

“We have no way to fight a fuel fire,” Emmeck said in a last-ditch attempt to get the council to vote favorably.

The fire district can still purchase the truck with a majority vote, but Emmeck said he hoped all four entities would get on board.

After the meeting, Hitchcock congratulated Emmeck on his “sales job” and said he just needed a bit more time to absorb the purchase.

And Emmeck pointed out that Nevis “has two tanker trucks” for mutual aid.

  • Reported that a crosswalk striping project is near completion that councilors hope will slow down traffic so pedestrians can cross Highway 34.
  • Heard from antique store owner Ardelle McAlpine that she wants restitution for flood damage she claims damaged her store last year. But McAlpine has not turned in a damage claim so the city’s insurer has no idea what to reimburse her. 

McAlpine suffered leaks when the street was torn apart to pave Highway 34. But because the city couldn’t determine the source of the leak, it took a while to pinpoint the problem. Clerk Treasurer Sebrina Hegg suggested McAlpine turn her claim into the city’s insurance carrier.

Sarah Smith
Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers courts, business and breaking news in addition to outdoors events.
(218) 732-3364