NU City Council Approves Flood Levee 19 Oct 11

The New Ulm City Council on Tuesday moved forward with the proposed construction of a permanent flood levee along the Minnesota River. The Council approved a Flood Hazard Mitigation Grant Agreement with the State of Minnesota that calls for the city to pay for half of the $2-million project, and the state the other half. Council president Chuck Schmitz urged action after several years of spending hundreds of thousand of dollars on temporary levees. The state’s share of the funds for the project would come from a bonding bill passed in the recent legislative session, but city councilors expressed concern over where New Ulm’s share would come from. City Manager Brian Gramentz pointed out that there are several ways it could be funded, including a combination of using the city’s fund balance, bonding and special assessments. The grant agreement was approved 4-1, with Councilor Les Schultz voting against it. The city now has 2 years to complete the project, which will run from 9th South to 20th South Streets along the river. In other business, the Council scheduled a public hearing for December 20th to discuss the fee for a new Brewer’s Tap Room On-Sale Liquor License. This comes after the Legislature recently approved of allowing breweries to sell their own products if a license is issued. The council also agreed to meet next Tuesday at 6pm for a 2012 Budget work session.