By Lorrie Ham
FOR THE LAKER
The Spring Park City Council proclaimed March 29, 2017 as Alan Bell Day to publicly recognize and honor Bell’s exceptional long-time service as maître d’, manager, general manager and president of Lord Fletcher’s Old Lake Lodge.
The resolution, passed at the council’s March 20 meeting, called Bell a “gentleman’s gentleman.” Mayor Jerry Rockvam read the resolution, which outlined Bell’s diligent efforts to maintain a positive relationship between Lord Fletcher’s and the city, and called out his “friendly, generous and professional disposition” in making sure that the restaurant was a good neighbor to nearby residents.
In front of a chamber full of family and friends, Bell was thanked for his years of service to the community and his many accomplishments over the course of his lifetime in serving others. Bell served at Fletcher’s from July, 1970 through October, 2003.
“This is really an honor,” said Rockvam as he called Bell forward to accept a plaque on behalf of the city.
Bell smiled and simply said, “thank you.”
Once the council chamber had cleared, the council got down to the other business of the evening, including the approval of a pair of permits for Lord Fletcher’s. The council approved an event permit for the May 6 Minnesota Bound Crappie Contest and the annual summer music permit, which spells out the conditions for live music events at Lord Fletcher’s.
In another matter, the council reviewed an Asset Management Plan proposal from Sambatek, the city’s engineering firm. City Administrator Dan Tolsma outlined the history of the asset management study, which had been under discussion for several years at the council level. Tolsma said that about a year ago, the city asked the engineer to begin work on a study to look into the city’s infrastructure, detailing current conditions and making recommendations on higher priority projects.
Tolsma said there had been some “misunderstanding” between the city and the engineer on the scope of the project to be completed. The proposal presented to the council outlined the completion of an Asset Management Plan at a cost not to exceed $60,000.
Rockvam clarified that with the project already about two-thirds complete, the city has already paid $5,600 toward the plan with another $33,000 owed for work completed. “We’re looking at another $21,000 to complete the entire project,” he added.
Rockvam acknowledged some confusion in the past on both sides as to the cost involved. To resolve the matter and get the plan completed, Rockvam proposed offering to either pay off the $33,000 outstanding expense over three years or take 12 percent off the bill and pay it now. Councilmember Catherine Palen agreed that the council was “picking up something that hadn’t been handled properly” but said she wanted to move forward on the Asset Management Plan.
After the motion was unanimously approved, the council directed Tolsma to present the offer to the engineer.