Council fills finance director vacancy, decommissions airport runway

Mike Christopherson
Crookston Times

    At City Administrator Amy Finch’s recommendation, the Crookston City Council this week approved a resolution making Ryan Lindtwed, longtime Crookston resident, the City’s new treasurer and finance director.

    Based on those who spoke prior to the council vote, the hire is a popular one.

    “I’ve known Ryan for a while and he’s a really great guy,” Ward 6 Council Member Dylane Klatt said. “I think you’ll be happy with him.”

    Finch said Lindtwed, who has held a variety of finance-related positions with various companies, brings a “strong skill-set” to the position.

    Mayor Dale Stainbrook said he sat in on Finch’s interview with Lindtwed and was impressed.

      “It looks like he’s well-rounded; he’s had past jobs in finance and each company has done something different,” the mayor said. “He should catch on very quick to city government.”

    Lindtwed’s first day will be Monday, March 8. He’ll replace Angel Weasner, who after eight-plus years as City finance director – with the last year spent as interim city administrator – left in January to become city administrator in Park Rapids, Minnesota.

Runway decommissioned

    Acting on the recommendation of the City Airport Commission, the council approved a resolution that decommissions a turf runway at Crookston Municipal Airport.

    Doing so is in accordance with the new, 20-year master plan that’s been developed for the airport, Ward 2 Council member and commission member Steve Erickson explained. With the turf runway no longer in use, he said the hope would be that at some point a larger, paved runway that could potentially accommodate larger, faster planes could be constructed.

    Finch said the turf runway was raising various visibility and safety concerns as well, and the Federal Aviation Administration recommended its decommissioning. “If it’s not decommissioned, it could affect (federal) funding for future projects,” she added.

Continue land pursuit

    A summary of a closed council meeting on Feb. 17 indicates that the City will continue its due diligence as it pursues the potential purchase of approximately 62 acres of land from developer Bob Herkenhoff directly to the east of his Nature’s View Estates residential subdivision.

    Working in various levels of collaboration with the City, Herkenhoff’s development over the past several years has proven to be the most popular location for new home construction in the community, adjacent to two man-made ponds he created. If the City ends up buying the 62 acres from him, Herkenhoff would step back from his lead-developer role and let the City think about its long-term residential housing needs further to the east, to the edge of City limits.

    Finch and City Attorney Corky Reynolds, according to the meeting summary, will continue to determine where the funds for such a purchase might come from, and a specific sale price.