Sunday, July 19, 2015

Thank You

July 22, 2015
Thank You Randy Carlson:
I wanted say a special thank you to Randy Carlson. Randy has been an important part of the journalism community in Dodge County. Randy has devoted his career to bringing the news and current events to the readership of the DCI. There passion and dedication will be missed. I also wanted to personally thank Randy for the opportunity to inform the citizens of Mantorville of important news via a published Mayors Article and thank you to the new owner ,Bussler Publishing, for continuing that column going forward. Thank you Randy!

Thank You Volunteers:
There are a few other thank yous I would like to acknowledge as well. Mantorville is blessed with a strong volunteer base and these volunteers make all of our celebrations possible from Stagecoach Days to Marigold Days and Old Fashioned Christmas. The volunteers working on the Marigold Days planning and events have been working extra hard for our 50th annual celebration this year. There are so many volunteers that if I tried to name them all I know I would leave some important names out. To all of our communities volunteers if you just help out with one event or if your active in many of our events and sub committees let me extend a much deserved THANK YOU! I know too often we don't say it enough but your efforts are noticed and very much appreciated! If you know of someone new to our community that would like to get involved or someone that would like to re-engage with our volunteer base please don't hesitate to have them reach out to me at MantorvilleMayor@Gmail.Com.

Thank You Students:
There is another group that deserves to be recognized. The Kasson-Mantorville school district is very blessed to have a strong and active student body. From athletic and academic achievements to community voluntarism, our students set a shinning example of the value our young adults can be to our community. Just in the last year we have had students compete in a national science contest, win a softball state title, raise money in partnership with local service based organizations, students have completed their Eagle projects and helped with housing needs by volunteering time during a housing project. I would like to thank all of the students, staff, advisors and parents that have help instill a sense of community pride and ownership in our young adults. Your efforts are why our area is strong and vibrant. One of the ways the two communities of Kasson and Mantorville have shown their appreciation for our students in by designing and installing an athletic achievement sign in both communities. The new Mantorville sign was installed last week at the location of the old faded signs on the west side of 57 on the north side of town.

The City of Mantorville is looking to fill a vacancy in our street department. The position is responsible for the maintenance of the parks, moving, taking a rotation at the city waste water treatment plant and various other responsibilities that arise out of the day-to-day operation of the city. Those individuals that would be interested in applying are encouraged to fill out an application at city hall by July 31.

The EDA is looking for nominations for the GEM of Mantorville. The deadline for submitting names is August 6th. The GEM of Mantorville recognizes an individual that has gone above and beyonds the call of duty for the city and our community. Anyone that knows of someone that they feel is deserving of this recognition is encouraged to submit the persons' name to city hall by filling out a nomination form.

The EDA is also looking to fill an open vacancy on the committee. If you have a passion for the economic health of the community, promoting tourism of just want to help make important decisions for the community feel free to submit an application at city hall.

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford, Mayor - City of Mantorville

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Mid Year City Update

June 15, 2015
I hope everyone had a great fourth of July. A few weeks back we celebrated stage coach days and there are still some great events coming up this summer. The city's next big celebration is Marigold Days.

Fiftieth Marigold Days:
The city is making big plans for our 50th Marigold Days celebration. We have added more music, more events and more fireworks. What started off as an informal celebration with the donation of some flower seeds has grown to be a large draw during the last few weeks of the summer. Look for more print and media ads as the dates gets closer. Make sure to mark your calendar for September 12 & 13. With a new melodrama, car show, 5K run, fishing contest, pie and ice cream social, flower show, quilt show, antique appraisals, bingo and a lot more there is something for everyone, so plan to attend our 50th Marigold Days and be sure to check out the live music. A complete list of events, times and musical groups can be found on the committees web site at

Mantorville GEM:
The Mantorville EDA is now accepting applications for individuals that have gone above and beyond the call of duty to help our community. We award a “GEM of Mantorville” award each year during Marigold Days and we choose the recipients from those names submitted for consideration. Persons interested in submitting an application and nominating a person should contact city hall and obtain a nominating form. Applications are due August 6, so that the EDA can make a selection and get the plaque made in time for presentation at Marigold Days.

Many of you have asked about the status of 5th street and Golf View Court. Both of these streets have experienced accelerated deterioration and have thus been updated in the construction priority. In both cases the sub-structure of the road has failed. Our engineering staff has evaluated the road condition and presented a plan that calls for the complete re-building of both roads. The city engineers are currently working on detail design plans for each and we will address these roads in the spring. There was not ample time to create the plans, find a construction crew and still fit the reconstruction into this season. The city staff has been informed that they should try and keep the holes patched as best they can until we can rebuilt the roads next spring.

The Mantorville Economic Development Authority (EDA) has a vacancy. The EDA is the organization that makes recommendations to the city regarding tourism, the allocation of the Rochester Sales tax money and how to grow business within Mantorville. Anyone interested in helping the city and the EDA make these types of decisions can apply for the open seat on the EDA by filling out an application at city hall.

The city and AT&T have a lease agreement that gives AT&T the right to build a small shelter to house it's electronics and to place several cellular antennas on top of our water tower. The original lease was a two year “options” lease which gives them the ability to build and install the cell “site”. AT&T has pulled a building permit however, has not yet started construction. The city received a request from AT&T to extend their two year lease option. The city has signed the extension of this agreement and the EDA as well as the Chamber of commerce are drafting a letter of support to encourage the completion of this project. When the city receives additional information regarding the construction of the cell site, we will make that information known.

Employee Evaluations:
The city evaluates all of it's employees on an annual basis. Occasionally we get feedback from sub-committee members on the performance of our staff but we only rarely receive feedback from the community. Anyone that would like to share an opportunity for improvement or a “job well done” observation may send their comments to me. I will form an aggregate community section and consider your input while the personnel committee reviews each employees performance this year. You can send email observations to MantorvilleMayor@GMail.Com.

Please feel free to visit my blog and comment on this or other articles. Check back frequently because I will post survey questions from time to time to gather input from the community. You may also send your questions or observations to my email address or as always feel free to stop me when you see me around town and share your thoughts about our community.

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford, Mayor - City of Mantorville

Happy Fourth of July!

July 1, 2015

I wanted to say thank you to all of our volunteers that have worked so hard on the Stage Coach Days celebration. The committee has spent many hours over the past year, they have added a few events to the celebration and their effort paid off again on a well executed plan. KTTC was in town with a camera crew and had an article during the news highlighting our celebration. I hope many of you had the opportunity to see this on the news. Thank you everyone that helped out with this event! I also wanted to thank everyone that took part in our event by dressing up in period attire, this truly makes the Mantorville experience unique and this is an area I continue to get many complements on from our visitors.

During the weekend I had the opportunity to speak to many of you and some of you mentioned areas hat needs the cities attention, we will be following up on those issues and thank you for taking the time to discuss your concerns and observations with me.

This coming weekend our nation celebrates it's birthday. I hope everyone is able to enjoy the weather, watch some fireworks and celebrate our nations independence. If during this weekend you see a member of our Armed services, remember to say Thank You for it is the soldier not the poet that has given us the first amendment and it is the solder that has paid for our freedom with his blood.

During our July 4th celebration I encourage you to look up the story behind the Star Spangled Banner, the story is about incredible bravery in the face of overwhelming odds. The American forces were greatly outnumbered and out gunned and faced a determined foe. Baltimore was the next city in the British targets and the only thing in their way was Fort McHenry. The fort had a huge flag flying that could been seen for miles. While held prisoner by the British Scott Keys (the author of the Star Spangled Banner) watched the flag over the fort fly during an intense battle. What Keys did not know, watching from a distance, was the efforts of the brave soldiers to continually restore the flag during the fight. The story of Fort McHenry is just one of thousands, perhaps millions, of bravery and courage our service personnel have endured in the name of Freedom and Liberty! We as citizens owe it to them to keep these stories alive, remember their names and sacrifices and to ensure we only elect those that will honor and respect the values and principals for which we have fought for over more than 200 years. So as you watch the fireworks this fourth of July and see the “Rockets Red Glare” during the fireworks show think of the original “Rockets Red Glare” and keep all of our brave service men and women in your thoughts and prayers.

Thank you again to everyone that is helping make our nation and our community a great place to live. God bless and have a great Fourth of July everyone!

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford, Mayor - City of Mantorville

Open for Business part 2a

Open for Business part 2a

This next weekend is stage coach days. This is the weekend that used to be called Old Tyme Days and is a great Mantorville tradition. The city is once again organizing the kiddie tractor pull as well as other fun family friendly events. I encourage everyone to come down and look around during the weekend.

In my first two parts of the open for business series I highlighted our revolving loan program and looked at some of the efforts the city and the EDA are taking to encourage new business opportunities within our community. My third part will provide details on the tax abatement program the city and EDA are offering to our business community. I have also mentioned that there were a few businesses that have started or are expanding in our community. I wanted to share some good news from one of our businesses. I was invited to a ground breaking ceremony for creative change. The Bergs are expanding their operation  with a new addition. I have attached a picture of the ground breaking ceremony.

This is just one example of how an existing business is making our community stronger by continuing to invest in our area. Help me in congratulating the Bergs on the success of growing their business and continuing to make Mantorville a great place to live and run a business. I have a few other businesses that I would like to highlight in future articles. If you have just started or expanded a business I would like to talk you about your business needs and highlight your business in a future article.

Remember that this weekend is Stagecoach days I hope everyone has an opportunity to come down and enjoy the activities and I hope to see all of you at one of the many events. Again congratulations to the Bergs.

Yours in service
Chuck Bradford

Open For Business (part 2)

                                                                                                                                          May 26, 2015

I hope everyone was able to enjoy the Memorial Day holiday this year. As I mentioned in my last article the City and the EDA are both working on trying to attract new businesses to our community as well as retain and support our existing businesses. I mentioned that the EDA has a revolving loan program and the City and EDA are setting up a tax abatement program.

I wanted to provide some additional details on our revolving loan program. The EDA has a grant that is a 51% / 49% grant match. The Mantorville EDA does not get the money until after we make a loan up to the maximum of what the grant dollars that were allocated. This means that it is in the City's best interest to make these loans so that we can increase the amount of dollars we have available to provide economic growth within our community.

We setup our program to utilize the expertise of lending professionals and then we provide additional funding at a discounted rate after we get an opinion from a lending source. We have worked with the local bank here in Mantorville extensively and they are aware of how our program works. We can work with other institutions as well.

Our standard process (yes we do make custom processes) is that we assume that the applicant applies for business funding from both a bank and the EDA. Both the bank and the city will have a “security interest” in the loan with the bank being the higher priority of the two. The bank will determine the fair market rate for the loan that the business is applying for and the EDA will set our rate around 1.5% to 2% below the banks rate. The EDA loan has a shorter term than that of the bank and also contains a final ballon payment. However, there is not a penalty for early repayment and in fact there are financial incentives for early repayment.

To qualify for these loans a business needs to meet the following criteria:
The effort needs to be a commercial project
The EDA needs to determine that the project is fiscally viable
That the plan fits within our community and the plan for our city
The project will need to meet the Americans with Disabilities Act where appropriate
The project / business needs to be located within Mantorville proper.

This is a great program and a couple of our businesses have already taken advantage of this discounted rate. In order to get more information or to start the application process you can pick up a form at city hall or talk to our local bank.

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford, Mayor - City of Mantorville