Park Rapids Council hires IT assistant, three firefighters

The personnel decisions were part of the council's June 14 consent agenda.

Park Rapids City Hall
Park Rapids Enterprise file photo
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The Park Rapids City Council approved three hires on June 14.

Under consent items, the council hired Deb Freund as a part-time information technology assistant at $30 per hour for up to 200 hours during the rest of 2022.

They also appointed Samuel Ness, Nicholas Skjonsby and Andrew Carmichael as volunteer firefighters at a starting wage of $13.71 per hour, and approved non-probationary employment for full-time public works street maintenance worker Kindra Hoffman.

The jury is out on whether it's usual or unusual for city officials to report monthly to the council. You're the jury. So what do you say?
The council approved conditional use permits for an offices-to-apartments conversion, a neighborhood bar and a sales and auction lot.
The council's July 26 workshop also featured an update from the Heartland Lakes Economic Development Commission.
The city council recognized Rod Nordberg on July 26 for his services to the city.

In consent items and other business, the council:

  • Supported a proposal by D.W. Jones Development, Inc. to rehabilitate and preserve Park Rapids Apartments as 48 units of affordable family housing. The council resolution describes this as an energy efficient project.
  • Gave Rapids Spirits clerk Colleen Taylor a pay raise to the 24-month step of $15.90 per hour as of June 16.
  • Gave public works facilities maintenance worker Steven Malm a pay raise to the six-month step of $16.06 per hour, retroactive to May 8.
  • Approved the city’s fund classifications, an annual requirement for auditing purposes. The four types of fund classifications are restricted, committed, assigned and unassigned.
  • Paid Farrington Enterprises, LLC $1,369 to replace a stuck-open exhaust gas recirculation valve on the fire department’s T370 Kenworth tanker.
  • Paid Hawkins, Inc. $2,149 to purchase water treatment chemicals.
  • Paid Heartland Lakes Development Commission $12,500 for second-quarter city assistance.
  • Paid Hess, Roise and Co., Ltd., $24,979 for work on Phase 1 of the history trail project, which is funded by grant money. The billing included lodging and expenses.
  • Paid Hildi, Inc. $2,600 for actuarial valuation and report for the Park Rapids Firefighter’s Relief Association.
  • Paid Hoffman Electric $3,926 to repair bridge lights after wind storm damage, retrofit five airport fixtures to LED, remove and repair an airport gate limit switch, repair a State Hwy. 34 bridge globe, do emergency repair of Runway End Identifier Lights and strobes, and retrofit parking lot and driveway lights to LED.
  • Paid Med Compass $2,220 for fire department SCBA (self-contained breathing apparatus) user medical exams and quantitative fit testing for 20 firefighters.
  • Paid SLL Inc. $24,310 for 2,371 property evaluations in 2022, the second of two payments. The first payment was $21,000.
  • Paid TKDA $3,500 for work on the airport terminal area taxilanes project.
  • Paid Tyler Technologies $4,193 for work on the city’s conversion to a new financial software system.
  • Paid Ryan Zemek $1,500 for work on updating the city’s arts and culture master plan, a grant-funded project.
  • Approved the sale of forfeited vehicles and excess property from the police department through a local online auction service. The vehicles include a 1998 Honda CRV, a 1991 Ford Thunderbird, a 2001 Subaru Legacy, a 2003 Pontiac Bonneville, a 1995 Chevy Corsica, a 2004 Chevy Impala, a 2007 Pontiac G-6, a 2003 Toyota Camry, a 2002 Buick Century, a 1999 Ford Mustang, a 1993 Chevy Silverado, a 2007 Pontiac Grand-Am and a 2008 TNG moped. 
  • Heard City Administrator Angel Weasner report that more election judges are needed, and need to be approved at the council’s July 12 meeting.
  • Received a report on plumbing and building permits issued in the city. In May, 19 building permits were issued for a total value of $1,387,786, bringing the year-to-date total to 49 permits valued at $3.6 million.
  • Received a memo in the agenda packet from Charter Communications about programming changes and a $5 price increase for the Hindi View package, which is being rebranded as India View. 
  • Acknowledged a $124 donation to the city by Friends of the Library on June 7, to pay for Uline bags at the library.
  • Approved payables totaling $146,940 and prepaids totaling $223,095.

The entire meeting, including a reminder by Assistant Fire Chief Bob Meier to attend the fire department’s open house on Saturday, lasted approximately 5-and-a-half minutes.
The city council’s next regular meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday, June 28 at city hall, following a 5:30 p.m. workshop.

Robin Fish is a staff reporter at the Park Rapids Enterprise. Contact him at or 218-252-3053.
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