Mayor says he wants to keep it positive so it doesn't turn into a 'crap show.'

It’s still on their calendars, but it’s likely that a March 30 joint meeting between members of the Crookston City Council and CHEDA Board of Directors, a sit-down sought by longtime council member and recently appointed Mayor Dale Stainbrook, will be postponed as part of the COVID-19/coronavirus pandemic.

But Stainbrook says he wants to see the joint meeting happen at some point.

With Stainbrook now seated after Guy Martin’s resignation as mayor last fall and the council at full strength after struggling to get things done while down two members for several months, the only void to be filled is city administrator, a position City Finance Director Angel Weasner is serving in an interim capacity until, the goal is, an administrator is hired by summer.

Stainbrook thinks a joint council/CHEDA Board meeting might keep things moving in a positive direction. While he’s hoped for some time to make such a meeting a reality, he said the feedback received from Ward 4 residents in a recent survey of that ward convinced him even further than a joint meeting should happen.

“The driving reason is the comments in the Ward 4 survey; I felt they were picking on CHEDA, and the council, too,” Stainbrook said at this week’s CHEDA Board meeting. “We talk about turning the page and transparency; if there are issues we need to discuss them, then turn the page and move forward.

“I want to keep it positive,” the mayor continued. “I don’t want it to be turning basically into a crap show.”

CHEDA Board members, including council members who serve on the board, seem to be in favor of a joint meeting with the council, as long as there’s an agenda that will be followed. Agenda items could include agreed-upon economic development visions, goals or project, and visioning efforts that extend out five or even 10 years, board members said. It might be a nice follow-up to the council’s recent, annual strategic planning commission, which was held last weekend, CHEDA Board President Kurt Heldstab said.

But, he stressed, a specific agenda is a must.

“I gotta have an agenda; I’m not going to come to a meeting without an agenda,” Heldstab said. “I need to know what we’re going to talk about.”