Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas


December 22, 2014

Friday the city held a retirement party for Dave Leth who has served the City of Mantorville for over 28 years. Dave started working with the cities waste water with our previous plant, has been instrumental in maintaining our current plant. Dave has also been involved with the planning and transition to our new plant. While Dave's official last full time day with the city is December 31, Dave has agreed to help with the transition of new staff personnel. In recognition of Dave's dedication, passion and professionalism I presented Dave with a plaque on behalf of the city at his retirement party. Dave can be seen receiving his plaque in the picture below. Remember to thank and congratulate Dave if you see him around town. THANKS DAVE AND CONGRATULATIONS!


Photo : Rhonda Rhodes

In November we remembered our veterans with an observance of veterans day and in December we will celebrate Christmas. Our veterans made sacrifices for our freedom and our nation and Jesus made a sacrifice for our salvation. I feel that this is the true meaning of Christmas, giving of ones self for the benefit of others. Some of us ring bells, others cook for a neighbor while others make an extra contribution to their favorite charity. No mater what you choose to do to “serve others” remember to keep Christmas in your heart. Rejoice in what we have been given by others and remember our freedom and salvation are precious gifts that are not free but have already been paid for by others.

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and have a safe and happy new year!

Chuck Bradford,
Mayor – City of Mantorville
http://mayorbradford.blogspot.com

Monday, December 1, 2014

Budgets and Taxation


December 01, 2014

This past week we celebrated our tradition of giving thanks for all the blessings we have in our lives. I hope everyone had a great thanksgiving. With thanksgiving behind us, we now look to Christmas and the new year. December also brings the need to close out the current year and make plans for the next. In January I will have my traditional state of the city article however, I wanted to update everyone on some of the items I have been asked about recently.

Next year we will see some changes in the membership of the city council. Jim Maxson is retiring after four years of service. Jim has been a valued member of the council and his input will be missed. I presented Jim with a certificate of appreciation that can be seen on my blog. Please remember to thank Jim for his service as he transitions into his new role as a liaison with the city. Council member Barb Ballard is also retiring at the end of they year. Barb served out a two year vacancy. I presented Barb with a certificate as well to thank her for her service and dedication to the city.

The cellular antenna that AT&T wants to install on our water tower is still on track and they have applied for all the necessary building permits. I know they would like to have the new antenna in place as soon as possible and I will continue to work with them on this project.

There is a property in town that has been identified as a health hazard. We are working with our new legal team and hope to have a resolution to this situation by spring. I had hoped to have had a resolution to this situation before now; however, there have been some significant road blocks that have been encountered while working through the necessary legal process. I assure you this remains on our “radar” and we will take action as soon as we are able.

The city council is in the process of initializing our budget for 2015 and we have our truth in taxation meeting next monday in the city council chambers during our regular meeting which starts at 6:30pm. Everyone that is interested in presenting ideas for consideration for our budget is encouraged to attend the meeting or submit written ideas to city hall. The city will have to have a finalized budget before the end of the year.

The city has completed some street projects as well as a couple of drainage projects this past year. During the budgeting process for next year the city council is looking at what projects will need to be addressed next as well as continuing to work towards our waste water treatment project. Anyone that feels there is a need for a follow up or additional work to complete this years projects, please forward those concerns to city hall or myself.

The city is currently engaged in some legal actions. You may see some public notices regarding these activities. While I am not at liberty to discuss on going litigation I wanted to inform you that we are working with the court system to insure everyone's interest is best served.

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford,
Mayor – City of Mantorville
http://mayorbradford.blogspot.com

Monday, November 24, 2014

Council Member Ballard to retire

Council member Ballard  decided not to seek reelection for 2015. Barb has been on the council for two years and has been very passionate and diligent in her duties to the council. Her energy and commitment to the city will be missed in the council chambers.

Thanks you Barb for your energy, passion and determined spirit.
I have attached a copy of the certificate of appreciation I gave to Barb tonight at our council meeting. The entire council and myself signed the certificate for Barb.





Jim Maxson Resigns

Council Member Jim Maxson has resigned from his newly elected position for next year. Jim ran unopposed this year; however, situations have come up that Jim feels require his attention away from the council chambers. Jim has been a solid contributor and will be missed on the council. I presented a certificate of appreciation to Jim tonight at our council meeting and I have attached a copy of that recognition below. Please make sure to thank Jim if you run into him around town. Jim will be working as a liaison for the city to help us get information out to our citizens and solicit information and concerns from our citizens.

Thank you again Jim!
The entire council and myself signed the certificate above.

Happy Thanksgiving


                                                       November 24, 2014

I am a member of a Toastmasters group. Recently in one of our meeting the topic for the day was, “What are you thankful for?” This was suppose to be an impromptu question that each person was expected to respond to within a 2 minute time frame. One person got up and said I don’t really have anything I'm thankful for. I expected them to tell us about some resent tragedy or some other horrible event in their lives. No, this person went on to say their live is very ordinary and not really anything to be thankful for. I reflected on their comments for a period of time and I thought there are at least a dozen things this person should be thankful for, I know I have at least that many!

We live in the land of the free because of the brave! I am thankful for all my fellow countrymen that have volunteered in our armed services. We are one of the few counties in the world were military service is voluntary and yet we have one of the strongest militaries on the planet. I am thankful for all of our men and women that have served or are currently serving in the defense of our freedom!

When Abby and I were first married we were so happy together and that happiness grew through out the years. I didn't think we could be any more happy than we were; then, Spencer our son came into our lives and I am so thankful and happy that we were blessed with this gift!

I am thankful for the freedoms that were fought so hard for that each one of us enjoy simply by living in this nation. One of the most cherished freedoms we have is the freedom to worship as we see fit. I am grateful to God not only for the blessing we each have in our personal lives, but the blessings we have as a nation and a state.

On November 4 of this year my neighbors asked me to serve as your Mayor again for two more years. I am so grateful to all of my friends and neighbors for your continued support and trust in my leadership. Thank you.

Finally, I am so grateful for all the friends and family that have chosen to share their lives and experiences with Abby, Spencer and myself their support and friendship are so very important to me!

As we gather this week with our family and friends I challenge each one of us to look for that someone or something we are grateful for that has made a large impact in our lives and one that we often just assume will always be there. Often the things that are truly the most important to us are the people that we forget to say “Thank You” to and to remember when we are giving thanks this time of year.

Let me conclude by saying a special thank you again to of all brave men and women in the armed services. We owe each of you a debt that can never be repaid, nor words express enough our gratitude and respect that we all have for each of you. I know I can never say nor do enough to thank you for your service so let me simply just say “THANK YOU, and God Bless!” May God watch over you and protect you and bring you home safely!

Yours in service,

Chuck

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Happy Veterans Day


Thank you to everyone that voted last Tuesday I appreciate your continued support and confidence in my leadership. I also wanted to thank Don Swanson for his willingness to serve and run for Mantorville's Mayor. I also wanted to thank everyone that took the time to cast your vote, with out your participation, free elections do not work. Last Tuesday we engaged in a very special process that is very unique in the history of man, the process that allows the governed the ability to have a voice in whom is allowed to preform the task of governing. Speaking of free elections, we are celebrating veterans day this week.

I was recently corrected when I wished someone a happy veterans day. They asked me why I would say happy veterans day. I responded because I am happy that we live in a country that inspires such dedication that we are able to fully staff our military with volunteers. I am happy that because of our veterans, our children will grow up in a free nation and I am happy because it is the veteran that has given us the freedom to live our lives as we see fit. I am happy and honored that our great nation is blessed with such patriots as our veterans. This veterans day and ,every day, keep our brave men and women in your thoughts and prayers. We honor our brave veterans on this special day and please remember to take all the veterans in your life and pray for our brave men and women who are still in harms way to return safely to the family and loved ones. To all of our friends, relatives and neighbors that are serving, have served or are getting ready to serve, THANK YOU and God Bless!

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford, Mayor - City of Mantorville
MayorBradford.BlogSpot.com

Monday, October 27, 2014

LMC Remarks

Welcome
My name is Chuck Bradford and I am the Mayor for Mantorville. I also have some of my council members here. I would like to also recognize Mayor Nelson from Kasson and his council members. Could the Council members of both communities please rise to be acknowledged…… Thank you. Our two communities work very closely together.

History
Mantorville’s charter pre-dates the State’s. With the oldest court house that has been in continuous service since it charter Mantorville is rich is original and authentic historic assets. The Mantorville Theater Companies building as well as the Hubble House date back to the very early days of our city. There are many original Victorian homes scattered throughout the community and we have a designated Historic District as well as a Preservation Association.

Branding
The Mantorville EDA has been working on a City Wide branding project. We have narrowed the logo portion of that branding project down to three candidates and we are currently soliciting community feedback on the three proposals.

Challenges
Last winter’s cold temperatures was a challenge for the city because we did not have any policy or recommendations in place on how to deal with frozen lines. We did a temporary resolution allowing citizens to run some water if they were concerned about pipe freezes; however, we still need to formally adopt a more permanent solution along with recommendations of service providers to contact in the case of frozen pipes do occur.

Mantorville is in need of upgrading our WWTP. We were able to partner with Kasson and realize a financial benefit for both cities.

One last thing I would like to acknowledge the council for is that the City of Mantorville has been able to do a -1% levy last year and a 0% the previous year. Our goal is for another 0 or -1 this year, this represents a lot of hard work by our council and I wanted to thank them for that dedication.

Summary
I would love to talk to you more on a one-on-one basis through out the evening on any of these topics and I again welcome you to our community. Thank you for joining us tonight. I will now ask Bill to come up from the League of Minnesota Cities to update us on the progress at the League.

Thank You

A Rendezvous, Meetings and Projects

This past week the League of Minnesota Cities held it’s annual meeting in Mantorville. Three other council members and I were able to attend and gain some valuable information from various seminars, lectures and by networking with our fellow council members from around the state. As host Mayor, I was asked to make a few opening statements and I have posted those on my blog for those that are interested in reading them.

Earlier this fall Mantorville was once again the host site for the Zumbro Bend Rendezvous, the picture below was taken from across the river looking back at River Side park and show just how much beauty Mantorville has in it’s parks. The Rendezvous is an annual living history event that many of the area schools have the opportunity to bring their students and learn about our past by experiencing what life was like between 1740 and 1840.


This past weekend the Kasson-Mantorvile Dog Park committee held a grand opening of the newly completed dog park. There were several canine customers present along with their human companions. Mayor Nelson, from Kasson, and myself were present and said a few words about the park as well. Please remember, responsible stewardship of this park as pet owners will ensure it’s success and longevity. Please remember to pick up after your pet during visits to the park.

Elections are coming up next week and I encourage you to take the time to cast a vote for those candidates that closest match your vision for our nation, state and city. It a has been a rewarding experience to be your mayor and I hope I have earned your trust to continue as your mayor for two more years. I would appreciate your vote on election day.

The surface of seventh street has been completed and the street is now open. We still need to do some clean up and landscaping to complete the project and will make sure that is addressed in the near future. We have also started on the drainage project between seventh and ninth and hope to complete that is the next few weeks.

The council is currently looking at next years budget and making plans for the projects we want to complete during the next three years. We are also trying to arrange a 0% or -1% levy again this year and are again going line by line through our wants and needs to determine priority.

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford,
Mayor – City of Mantorville
http://mayorbradford.blogspot.com

Sunday, September 14, 2014

September 15th Article


Marigold days is behind us and the air is getting more crisp. Soon we will be getting our skis sharpened the sledge's oil changed and looking for our winter clothing. Before those dates, the city is busy finishing up some of the summers projects like the street work on 7th street. The city is also busy looking at our budget for 2015.

Follow up from last weeks article:
In my attempt to thank many of those involved with our Marigold days events. I missed a very significant contribution! I thanked the K-M Lions Club for their help with the setting the flags but I neglected to thank the entire Mantorville Field of Flags Committee. I am deeply sorry for this omission and I truly do appreciate both Cindy Nelson and Dick Denny's help organizing the event, collecting money and arranging the program. I would also like to thank the Kasson American Legion for their help with presenting the colors.

Mantorville GEM
Sen. Senjem with Anthony's Boyscout Troop
An abbreviated version of my Article from last week appeared in the paper, for a complete copy refer to my blog at http://mayorbradford.blogspot.com. In the full version of my article I recognized our GEM for 2014 Mr. Anthony Hofstad. Mr. Hofstad also presented his Eagle project during the weekend. Congratulations again Anthony. My remarks at the Eagle Project dedication are also on my blog.

Projects
The Council is currently looking at our list of next projects; these include new siding for the Fire Department, sidewalk work and more street work. We also have the much talked about Waste Water Treatment plant project in cooperation with Kasson. There is more detail on some of these projects on my blog. The council also looked at expanding the scope of the 7th street drainage project. After our engineering firm consulted with three contractors, we received a very favorable bid for the expanded work to address additional drainage capacity around 6th street. The council gave our engineer the authorization to move forward with that additional work.

Remembering:
This last week we remembered the events of September 11th 2001. For many of us those events seem like just yesterday, for others it is something they heard about from their parents or teachers. In any event it is important to remember that there is evil in the world and that we must remain ever vigilant. The city's new flags, and many others around the nation, were flown at half mast to remember and honor those that lost their life that fall morning. We must also remember that many others have placed themselves in harms way and even made the ultimate sacrifice while defending freedom. May God bless all those that have served or are currently serving in our armed forces. We will NEVER forget!

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford,
Mayor – City of Mantorville

Sunday, September 7, 2014

2014 Marigold Thank You


Thank You!
We had a perfect day, nice weather and a great turn out for our 49th Marigold days celebration. The weekend started on Thursday with a Field of Flags Honoring Veterans being setup by the Kasson Mantorville Lions. The Lions accepted nominations for the names of soldiers to honor on this filed and each flag placed represents a soldier that deserves our honor and gratitude. Thank you to all the Lions that helped set up this amazing display. I wanted to extend a thank you to all of our volunteers and vendors that worked so hard to make this years celebration another great success. I also want to thank everyone that shared part of their weekend with us. Plans already have started for our 50th Marigold days celebration so make sure to mark your calendar for next years event. The car show on Sunday was a great event as well. Thank you to everyone that took so much time to shine up their cars, thank you to the vendors that supplied the prizes and financial support for the car show and thank you to everyone that worked so hard to make this a special part of our weekend. The Marigold celebration culminated in the Grand Parade on Sunday afternoon. Once again the parade was well organized and expertly executed. Thank you, to everyone that made this so a successful parade. I can hardly wait until next years Quinquagenary celebration.


Our 2014 Mantorville Gem:
Anthony's Family at the dedication
This year we recognized a young man from Mantorville who is truly an inspiration to all of us. Anthony Hofstad dedicated his Eagle project to the City of Mantorville on Saturday morning. For his Eagle Scout project Anthony designed and built a three pole flag display. His project has an American flag, Minnesota flag, Fire Department flag and a POW/MIA flag. In the picture to the right, Anthony wearing his Boy Scout uniform is standing with his family in front of his completed projects with the new flags on display. Senator Dave Senjem presented Anthony with an American flag that was flown over our state’s capitol. Anthony is also a member of the Fire Department Explorers program, runs his own small business and is already an active member of our community. While Anthony didn’t know about the GEM award until Saturday night, the Economic Development Authority had already selected him as the 2014 GEM of Mantorville. While his accomplishments would be impressive for any volunteer in our community, combine that with a series of significant personal challenges and considering he is only sixteen years of age makes his accomplishment all that much more impressive. When faced with challenges that most of us would have said, “This is too much I’m going to cancel some projects”. Anthony’s attitude was to push through and continue forward. Congratulations again Anthony! Now, the hard part will be “what’s next”. Start thinking about nominees for our Quinquagenary celebration next year.


Projects:
The Mantorville City Council met this past Monday to discuss the progress and future plans for the North West Drainage projects on 6th and 7th street. Keeps an eye out on the paper, more information will be shared soon with updates from the council as they work with our engineer.
The Council is currently looking at next projects; these include new siding for the Fire Department, sidewalk work and more street work. We also have the much talked about Waste Water Treatment plant project and the cooperation with Kasson.

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford,
Mayor – City of Mantorville
http://mayorbradford.blogspot.com

Anthony Hofstad's Eagle Scout Remarks


September 6th, 2014

I had the honor to make a few remarks at a Eagle Scout Dedication this past weekend as part of Marigold days. Senator Senjem presented a U.S. Flag that was flown over the State Capitol. I wanted to share with everyone that was not able to attend the ceremony some of the remarks I made about this brave young man:


The Boy Scouts of America is an organization with over 2.5 million scouts and close to a million volunteers. The mission of the BSA is to instill a sense of morality, reverence and duty in young scouts to prepare them for being active citizens. In most cases the Eagle Project is their first experience in community service. In Anthony’s case this is not true, Anthony has been involved in his community already and is currently serving as a Fire Department Explorer. Anthony is a true entrepreneur and has started his own small business. While the past year has been a difficult one for this young man with some significant road blocks a person of his age should not have to deal with, Anthony in the best sense of the scouts did not let this slow him down! He finished his Eagle Scout project, continued with his duties on the Fire Department and kept up with his school work. Quite impressive for anyone at any age!

The Scout Law says:
“On my honor I will do my best to do my duty to God and country”…… I’m going to stop there. Duty to God and Country! There is something you don’t hear too much about anymore these days. The concept that a good citizen has an obligation to help his country, neighbors and to respect God’s law.

I feel that Anthony is a perfect example of what the scouts had in mind when they created the rank of Eagle Scout.

The City of Mantorville is proud to call Anthony one of our own, and his example serves as a reminder to us all.

We are here to dedicate Anthony’s Eagle Scout project to the City of Mantorville. The Eagle project is only pursued by 7% of the BSA’s 2.5 million scouts, making this a very prestigious achievement. In order to reach this rank a scout must complete the requirements of the previous five ranks, earn 21 merit badges which include First Aid, Emergency preparedness and Family and Community responsibility. In addition the scout must serve in a leadership position in the scouts as well as in a religious organization.

Now is with great pride and joy that I introduce our senator, Senator Dave Senjem to say a few words about Anthony’s accomplishments. Dave…


Sen. Senjem presenting the flag
Sen Senjem, Mayor Bradford and Anthony
Senator Senjem Presenting flag                           Senator Senjem, Mayor Bradford and Mr Hofstad


National Night Out, 2014

                                                                                                                                        August 12, 2014

This year we had one of our best turn out for the National Night out. The Fire Department provided a tanker truck again to spray the kids with water. The Red Cross was available to answer questions. The Sheriff and Fire Chief were both present as well as many of the City Council. I wanted to post some of the great pictures from the event on this blog. I hope you enjoy them and feel free to leave a comment.

 Our gardens are just one example of the time and effort our volunteers contribute to our community
   The kids kept cool and had fun thanks to the Mantorville Fire Department.


The Fire Department provided the water, equipment and water to keep the fun going.

No one seemed to mind the long line, since there were many things to talk about with our neighbors.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


August 8th , 2014
Summer Updates

It's August and many of us are starting to get the list of school supplies and making plans for the fall. Summer still has many things to offer before we get our sleds and skis out.

MARIGOLD DAYS
Marigold days is one of the last big events of the summer. Each year at Marigold days we give a “Gem of Mantorville Award” to a person who has made a real difference to the community. We also remember a person who is no longer with us. The “past” award can be someone that has recently left us or can be one of the original town members. A nominee for the present day award does not have to live within the city limits, only someone who has made a real difference to the city. We are currently accepting nominations for both current and past Gems and nominations can be turned into city hall. The Economic Development Authority (EDA) will make a selection from the nominees and then present the award during Marigold days.

DRAINAGE PROJECTS
We have started work on the needed drainage upgrades on 7th street and we will complete this soon. The two projects include making seventh street wider and also improving our drainage system through the city. The drainage upgrades are being phased in with street work and we have already complete some of the phases closer to downtown. Once completed these combined drainage upgrades will benefit the entire city.

JOINT POWERS
The City of Mantorville, the City of Kasson and the School District are all members of the Joint Powers Group. This group is responsible for identifying capitol needs and solutions that are mutually beneficial to all three members which any one single member would have a hard time justifying on their own. Some of the projects that this organization has funded are the fence in Mantor Field and Dennison Park. They have also paid for seeding equipment and bleachers. This is one of the many areas in which the two cities and the school board all work together for the better good of our community.

WASTE WATER TREATMENT
This newspaper has recently published a couple of good articles about the Waste Water plant. The City of Mantorville and the City of Kasson have finalized the agreement that will govern the relationship between Kasson and Mantorville and spell out the responsibilities of each city. Mantorville will construct and own a pressurized line running from our current plant location to the Kasson treatment plant. Mantorville will still be responsible for setting and collecting sewer rates. The city has taken a little extra time exploring possible funding sources and ensuring the agreement was the best possible one we could reach for the citizens of Mantorville.

EAGLE SCOUT PROJECT
We have a Boy Scout that has been working on his Eagle project which is to install three flag poles in front of our city hall building . Some of you may have noticed that the project has been recently completed and the new poles look spectacular. We have a U.S., Minnesota and MIA flag that will be placed on our new poles. Our Eagle Scout Anthony Hofstad has done a great job and the City does appreciate the hard work that Anthony has put in to making our City look better. I will post pictures of the finished project once the flags are installed.


NATIONAL NIGHT OUT

Last Tuesday was National Night Out and Mantorville had a great turnout for this event. Many volunteer hours went into planning this event and making it such a success. I have posted some good pictures from our event on my blog. Make sure to check those out and feel free to leave a comment as well. Thank you, too, to everyone who brought food to share and donations. The entire community came together to make this event a success. Thank you all for joining in the fun.

For more pictures and information about National Night Out look at my blog at MayorBradford.BlogSpot.com

Yours in service,



Chuck Bradford,
Mayor - City of Mantorville

Why I love Small Towns Like Mantorville


                                                                                                                                       August 12, 2014
People often ask me why I am still in Mantorville and why don't I move to a big city? I have always found this to be a strange question, I mean why would anyone want to live in a big city when they can live in a beautiful community like Mantorville!
Mantorville, like many small towns, has a strong sense of community identity where neighbors help each other and are considered valuable assets and not just someone to put up with. We are neither disgruntled about life in a small town nor do we feel like we're stuck here. We embrace membership in our community, county and state and celebrate life through a strong volunteerism committment. We have back yards for our children to play in, pay lower taxes in communities with a low crime rate and enjoy beautiful public spaces because we all chip in to clean up, fix and build these community assets.

We start our businesses here in order to provide goods and services to our neighbors and friends and in turn we make an effort to shop locally because we want our friends and neighbors to be successful with their business endeavors.

When I tell my big-city friends that I know the names of the neighborhood kids and where my neighbors work, they tell me that is what they wouldn't like about living in a small town--how everyone knows everything. However, what they are missing is that we take the time to understand each other not because we are nosey but because we care.

Mantorville is also a historic town which was chartered before Minnesota became a state. In historic communities like Mantorville we have preserved our heritage through architectural assets because we realize that in order to understand where we are going we must have a understanding of our past. We also realize that many of the “old structures” in our community can be re-purposed and this actually saves money. Small towns in America are where our traditional values are still held in high regard, where we live by the golden rule and we understand that if we see something that needs to be done, we call our neighbors and friends and make plans to fix it and make it better.

Why do I love living in Mantorville? Is it because of our sense of community? Is it because of lower taxes, lower crime and higher quality of life? Is it because we have stronger educational systems? Yes! All these things and many intangibles make me ask, “Why wouldn't everyone want to live in a small town?”

Sincerely,

Chuck Bradford
Mantorville

June City Update

                                                                                                                                        June 22, 2014
This last week the area saw some heavy rains and strong winds. The City's properties for the most part made it through the storms relatively well; however, we know that there was some private property damage, and Gov. Dayton has issued a state of emergency for several counties of which Dodge County was listed. This declaration makes available some state resources to help with recovery efforts. Anyone that would like more information on these programs is encouraged to contact City Hall (507) 635-5170 or the Minnesota Department of Commerce at (800) 657-3602.

Some people have noticed that the flags along our bridge were missing after the storm. The City has recovered those flags and will be getting them back up before the fourth of July.

Some of you are aware of efforts in Rochester regarding the “Save the Chardonnay House” and that Mantorville was investigating two possible option for relocating that structure in Mantorville for the purposes of establishing a B&B. While those efforts were not successful, the City will continue to investigate the possibility of recruiting a B&B owner utilizing either an existing building within our community of a structure that can be saved and restored.

The City was made aware of some localized drainage issues that have been addressed in the past and have recently resurfaced. Our engineer has surveyed the area and spoken with the residents involved. The City does plan to move forward with efforts to help this area and we are looking for a more permanent solution that what has been done in the past. If there are other areas in the city that you feel the City Council should be made aware of please bring these to our attention either at one of our bi-weekly meetings or by contacting City Hall at the number above.

The City is also continuing to work on plans with the City of Kasson on a combined waste water treatment plant. Tentative plans are calling for a spring of 2015 ground breaking; however, there are a few items to take care of prior to that date being finalized. I will keep everyone updated as the City learns more.

The City is also making plan for work to start on the seventh street drainage project. This project is one component of our over-all city wide drainage efforts, and will hopefully address several areas of concern within the city.

Events:
A few weeks ago the Kasson-Mantorville 6th graders helped with cleanup efforts in Riverside park, there efforts are greatly appreciated and help keep our community looking its best. Thank you to all the students that helped with this effort!

The weekend of the 28th Mantorville's annual “Stage Coach Days” (formerly “Old Tyme Days) will take place downtown with several fun events planned throughout the weekend. If you have not attend this celebration in the past I encourage you to come down and explore some of the events and activities.

One of the activities scheduled next Saturday night is the “Dog Park Committee's” “Wolf, Wine and Wag” fund raiser event. This is an event the committee uses to raise private funds to help build the Mantorville dog park. There will be several different types of wine to taste and some of our citizens will even be in costume during this event. This is a good way to learn about the volunteer efforts of the committee, find out the latest status of the park and help raise private funds for this effort.

The following week after “Stage Coach Days” is the celebration of our nations birthday. While we have already celebrated Memorial day a few weeks back, it is important to remember that our nation would not a free and independent nation with out the bravery, dedication and sacrifice of our fellow citizens that have served (or are currently serving) in our armed forces. We all owe then a debt that can never be repaid. For all our citizens that have served, are serving or have loved one that are answering our nations call, THANK YOU, and God Bless!

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford, Mayor - City of Mantorville
MayorBradford.BlogSpot.com

April Showers

                                                                                                                                         April 13, 2014
The seasons are changing once again. As we finish the seasons maintenance on our winter machines, dry off and clean our skis and pack away our coats and boots we are making plans for warmer weather. With the weather warming up and most of our snow melted, we have dodged the first threat of flooding this year. This Spring’s warm and cold cycle allowed for a slower thaw and allowed a large portion of water to run off into our rivers and streams at a rate substantially lower that what it could have been. There is still significant snow pack up north, which could still cause issues down stream; however, I think we are in a good position currently.

I wanted to congratulate the new County Commissioner for Dodge County District two Tim Tjosaas. Commissioner Tjosaas resigned as Kasson’s Mayor and Matt Nelson has been chosen to take over the remaining portion of Tjosaas’s term. I have had the opportunity to work with Mayor Nelson a couple of times already and the City of Kasson is in good hands. Congratulations Mayor Nelson.

This past weekend the Mantorville City Council held it’s spring retreat where we reviewed updates from our financial advisor and our City Engineer. We asked several question and considered different options to keep both our water/sewer rates low as well as the city tax rates. While the net result of the seventh street project and Waste Water Treatment project is that the we will need to adjust both our rates and taxes. The council is committed to keeping the cost of living in Mantorville at a reasonable rate with any direction we take.

After speaking with both our advisor and engineer, the City Council is still planning on moving forward with the 7th Street project. We are now looking at the Waste Water Treatment Plant as a 2015 project. During the retreat, we also spoke about some needed changes to our ordinance that have become apparent during this past winter. In the months to come, the city will be asking for input from our citizens on these changes and our goal is make sure that our ordinance is fair and reasonable.

As the weather continues to warm up, we may find more waterline breaks and pot holes. Please report these to city hall as soon as you notice a problem so that we can address these situations quickly. The phone number for city hall is 635 – 5170 and you can reach city hall by email at cityofmant@kmtel.com.

The City Council always welcomes our citizens and friends of the city to address the city council on items of concern. Please help us plan our meeting in an efficient manor by requesting time to address your questions or consideration of new ideas. We will make every effort to recognize individuals who drop in during meetings as well. To help us plan our meeting the cutesy of asking to be placed on the agenda is appreciated; however, we do make every effort to recognize individuals that ask for time during our meeting as well.

The city now has the ability for customers to pay their city bills on-line. There is a link on the city’s web site (Mantorville.com). The business ID you will need can be found by searching for “The City of Mantorville” or by using our Business ID of RT20255. This system has been available and tested over the last couple of months, and we offer this as a service to those customers that prefer this method of payment.

Yours in service

Chuck Bradford, Mayor - City of Mantorville
MayorBradford.BlogSpot.com

Monday, January 13, 2014

Three local scouts achieve top award

January 12, 2014

Two Mantorville Boy Scouts and one Scout from Kasson achieve the top rank of “Eagle”. Troy Asche and David Brent both of Mantorville along with Justin Ness of Kasson were recognized in a ceremony on Sunday January 5 awarding each scout with their Eagle Badge. The three scouts worked towards this level for several years and made a commitment to their faith and community. As a final step towards their accomplishment each scout choose a community service project. Mr. Asche landscaped around the Kasson welcome sign, Mr. Ness conducted a mapping project that involved researching and documenting the location of fallen veterans in Lutheran Church Cemetery while Mr. Brent donated around 90 hours of labor to clean and beautify Slingerland park in Mantorville. Only a small percentage of scouts complete the level of work required to be awarded the rank of Eagle Scout, therefore it is fitting that a special recognition be made in honor of their achievement. I have proclaimed that Thursday January 16 be known as “Eagle Scout Achievement Day” and have sent each scout a copy of the proclamation below. The proclamation  reads:
Whereas, Troy Asche, David Brent and Justin Ness have made significant efforts to improve our communities through community service. Whereas, Mr. Asche, Mr. Brent and Mr. Ness have fulfilled all the requirement of the Boy Scouts of America for the Eagle award. Whereas, The scouts above have taken an oath to support their faith, their Country and fellow citizens through service. Whereas, The achievement of the Eagle rank is a seldom and special occasion and an occasions that deserves to be recognized.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Chuck Bradford, by virtue of the authority vested in me as Mayor of the City of Mantorville, do hereby proclaim January 16, 2014, as
“Eagle Scout Achievement Day”
This Day, I call upon all the people of our communities to join in recognition of the three scouts above accomplishments and commitment to community.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fourth day of January,
in the year of our Lord two thousand fourteen, and of the States of Minnesota the one hundred and fifty-six

Congratulations scouts and thank you for your service and dedication.

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford, Mayor - City of Mantorville
MayorBradford.BlogSpot.com


State of the City


January 01, 2014
State of The City

Happy New Year Everyone. 2013 was a busy year for the City. The year ended with a few new building permits, request for expansion, lot splits and some lot combinations. The City looked at our budget, accounting practices, personnel needs, equipment needs and proposed projects. Mantorville is on solid financial grounds and is poised to be in a very strong position as we climb out of the current recession. The City Council and City staff has worked with the State Legislature and our representatives on a couple of projects ranging from bike trails and tourism to infrastructure.

Lower Taxes for All
The City is allowed to charge up to 1% of the taxable market value of a home. If the City were to charge the entire 1%, our “advertised levy rate” would be “100%” of that 1%. In other words a house with a taxable market value of  $100,000 would be tax by the City in the amount of $1,000. Over the last few years the City has either raised the levy by a small amount like 3% or held even with a 0% levy. Thanks to the City council and our committee chairs we were able to do something very few governing bodies ever do, lower the rate at which we tax our citizens. In fact, our rate for 2014 is lower than our rate for any of the last three years. The City has passed a “1%” levy DECREASE that sets our rate at less than three fourths of the max the City is allowed or a dollar value of $422,995. In order to put this figure in perspective, I have included a table below that illustrates the tax levy amounts and levy rates for the last five years.

Tax Year
Levy Amount
Levy Rate
2009
$406,611
56%
2010
$414,743
57%
2011
$423,037
63%
2012
$427,268
73%
2013
$427,268
73%
2014
$422,995
72%
                          Historical Tax Levy information for Mantorville

The City was able to reduce our tax levy for this year while at the same time finalizing plans for two large projects to begin.

Waste Water Treatment Project
The first big project the City is looking forward to is the construction of the new waste water line between Kasson and Mantorville. This project has been in the works for several years now and the City is hopeful we can get final signoff from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and begin the project in the spring. In 2013, the City held a number of meetings to solicit input from our neighbors. The City also asked our Engineer to put cost figures to various options. The City considered a simple upgrade, complete over-haul of our existing plant, a new plant at a new location and the opportunity to connect with Kasson. After several debates and planning meetings the City Council chose to pursue the most cost effective option for our citizens and the option that would meet all of the foreseeable future needs. More information is available on my blog in the May 6 and March 1 2013 articles. My blog is located at www.MayorBradford.BlogSpot.Com. The project is estimated to cost around $2 million dollars.

Seventh Street Project
The second big project that the City is looking forward to is the update and repair of seventh street. The area around seventh street has some drainage issues, repair issues and has a tapered width that should be addressed. After we resolve some of the drainage issues around Seventh Street, we will be able to continue moving forward with a updated drainage system that will eventually terminate at the river. Part of this effort has already been completed in the down town area. This project is estimated to cost about $500,000.

The Right Equipment
The City purchased a new rescue truck for the Fire Department. The new truck replaced a 1980’s truck the department had been using. With the department adding First Responder service to their offering the department saw a substantial increase in usage on their rescue vehicle and the 1980’s truck simply could no longer perform at the level the department needed. The City spent about %100,000 on this new truck.

More Competition Means More Prosperity
The City has signed an agreement with AT&T to lease space on top of our water tower for the placement of a new “cell location”. This will allow AT&T to better serve the Mantorville area, open an additional choice in cell providers to our citizens and provide the City with much needed additional “Non-Tax” based revenue. Once AT&T completes the installation of the communication equipment the company will pay the City a monthly lease payment of $900.

A Friend in Need
Another event worth noting was the repurposing of the old school in Mantorville. While most of the building was determined to be suitable for the counties needs, not all of the building meets the counties criteria. By purchasing the old school building and repurposing it most of the structure. The county was able to retain all of their existing services in Mantorville while also preserving a portion of our history.

The Best is Yet to Come
The New Year brings new opportunities, new challenges and new friends. As we say good-bye to 2013 and hello to 2014, we are optimistic about what the future brings for the City and our citizens. We look forward to completing our planned projects and making plans for the projects that are still on the drawing board. On behalf of the City and myself, let me extend a heartfelt “Thank You” to everyone that attended a City meeting this past year, wrote a letter to the council and provided recommendation or guidance during our decision process. Your input is more valuable than you know and we truly do appreciate your time and efforts. I also wanted to say thank you to all of our neighbors that have volunteered either in a formal way on one of our subcommittees or in an informal way on one of our projects, so much of the character of Mantorville would be very different without your contributions, THANK YOU!

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford, Mayor - City of Mantorville
MayorBradford.BlogSpot.com


Merry Christmas


                                                                                                                                 December 23, 2013

It has been over a year since my neighbors asked me to be their mayor and I remain humbled by the honor that you have placed with me. While I start to gather information for my state of the city article in January I can't help but reflect on some of our success over the past year. Some of these I will over in my article in January but some of the big things worth noting are the efforts the city engaged in to  not only find a solution to our urgent waste water treatment problem but also finally start to intensify our efforts on infrastructure needs. The city was able to work with our sub committees on budgets and proposed projects so we could pursue two major projects next year while keeping taxes low. None of this would have been possible with out the hard work and dedication of your council members, the cooperation of the city's sub committe chairs and their members. I am proud of our council and city groups for the level of effort everyone has put in to make Mantorville a true gem of a place to live.

When we get busy, we tend to focus less attention on some of the things that really matter most. This time of year we are given the opportunity to acknowledge those people that are most important in our lives and also we are given an opportunity to reach out to our  neighbors that are in need. Remember to spend some extra time with your family, take some time to help someone else and remember those that have placed themselves in harms way so that we may enjoy this season. May the joy and love of this season find its way into your heart and may all of you have Merry Christmas, a happy Hanukkah and very safe and prosperous new year.

Yours in service

Chuck Bradford, Mayor - City of Mantorville
MayorBradford.BlogSpot.com

New Seasons Bring Change

October 14, 2013
The air is warm and the weather has been calm and sunny; however, the leaves are falling and fall is defiantly in the air. As we eagerly await the change of the new season, the holiday celebrations and fall harvest the legislature is also seeing a change in season. We are transitioning from the political season of policy and issue to bonding and investment. Every two years the State Legislature drafts a new bonding bill that will allow the state to function for the next two years. The Capital Investment committee was in Rochester on October 8th and the City of Kasson and Mantorville presented a project of combined interest that will help both cities with our current Waste Water Treatment updates. If the project does get included in the bonding bill this year, the financial impact on the citizens of Mantorville for our treatment plant will be greatly reduced. Mayor Tjosaas and myself presented our plans and request to the committee. I am very happy and proud of our council; EVERY single member of the City Council showed up for this meeting and supported our request. Please feel free to reach out to our State Representative and State Senators and ask them to support our community and project.

Continuing on the theme of change the City, as you may remember, recently hired a new public works employee Andrew Fischer. Andrew has been doing a great job and is learning about our city. Our two public works employees are doing a great job getting ready for the new season as well making sure our snow removal equipment is ready and everyone is up to speed on the status and operation of the equipment we have.

The City also has another employee that has been really working hard for the citizens of Mantorville. Our City Clerk Cami Reber has been taking on a extra duties to cover for the loss of a part time clerk a few years back due to budget cuts. When you come into the office to pay your bills or apply for a building permit please take a second to thank her for her commitment.

This fall your council has been busy planning several new projects for next Spring. We are examining the long awaited 7th street project, installing the new Waste Water line to Kasson and buying a “newer” refurbished rescue vehicle for the Fire Department. Even with these project s underway, the council is still hopeful of maintaining a final tax levy of -1% for 2014. This lower level of taxation will help our residents recover from the latest recession.

Two of my most recent public speeches that affect the city have been uploaded to my blog at MayorBradford@BlogSpot.com for those that would care to read them. They are my remarks at the school closing ceremony and at the Capital Investment Committee meeting.

Along with our season fall celebrations comes the anticipation of precipitation that is of solid form rather than liquid. I know my fellow skiers and snowmobilers are eagerly looking forward to our first snow fall. Remember snow is part of life in Minnesota, if you find a way to enjoy it you will spend more of your life happy. So I hope all of you will join me on the slopes or on the trails. Happy Minne-SNOW-tah everyone!
Yours in service


Chuck Bradford, Mayor - City of Mantorville
MayorBradford.BlogSpot.com