The brakes are put on the delivery of the team car from Wells PD | News, Sports, Jobs

The Wells Police Department patiently awaits the arrival of their new police cruiser. Now they have learned that the wait will be longer.

At the Wells City Council meeting on September 12, Chief Tim Brenegan told council members that the Ford Explorer, which was ordered in March, was due for delivery in August.

“We have been notified by the state that Ford has canceled all squad orders,” Brenegan said. “Then we were informed that we had one day to submit a new order.”

It wasn’t just the delay that caused some dissatisfaction with the situation.

“The team we ordered in March had a price tag of $34,000,” Brenegan explained. “When we reordered the vehicle, the price had gone up to $42,000.”

Brenegan said the city, which leases the vehicle, will now see its monthly lease payments increase by $300 per month.

The chief said the number of options available to command a pursuit vehicle is also decreasing.

“Dodge will stop offering the Charger, so we will stick with the Dodge Durango or the Ford Explorer”, Brenegan shared.

He also told council members that he was checking to see if the equipment to be carried in the new vehicle would still be compatible.

Brenegan also made a recommendation to the board asking for Officer Shaun Willaby’s trainee status to be removed.

“He does a great job” Brenegan said. “I can’t wait to see him continue to grow in his career.”

City attorney David Frundt was present at the meeting and shared with council members the need for the city to review its policy on animals to be impounded.

“We have entered into a joint powers agreement for kennel services with Blue Earth, but the building that served as the pound will be closed by the end of the year”, Frundt explained. “Blue Earth will contract with the Humane Society for book services and Wells may need to consider doing something similar.”

Also at the meeting, City Engineer Ben Rosol mentioned that the sod will soon be laid when construction is complete.

“I was also told that the Department of Transportation will be placing temporary speed limit signs at the south end of town on Highway 22 as part of their ongoing study of speeds on that highway,” Rosol commented.

During his report, City Administrator Connor LaPointe had news to share about the Economic Development Authority (EDA) and the Housing Redevelopment Authority (HRA).

“EDA is working on the sale of southern industrial park land and an application for a revolving loan fund for the prospective business. They have also created a COVID business relief grant program for which they hope to receive American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding,” said LaPointe. “The HRA sold the second of its twin homes in the town center addition last month. They are also in the process of selling dilapidated houses to developers who wish to restore or demonstrate them.

Moving on to new business, the board accepted the resignation of Amanda Buendorf as part-time library clerk and approved applications to open for the position.

With respect to other personnel matters, the board approved the hiring of Jinger Woodring as the clubhouse attendant at Wells Golf Club. The council also established the requirement to use a golf cart on the course. Golf cart drivers at Wells Golf Club must be at least 18 years of age or have a valid driver’s license.

There was also a discussion about a damaged mailbox policy.

The council has compared the policies of many neighboring towns but has not implemented a policy at this time.

In other cases:

• Approval has been given for a request from United South Central Schools to paint some sidewalks as part of their homecoming celebration.

• The board accepted a donation of $250 from the Danny Voigt Golf Memorial which will be used by the Wells Park Board for the baseball lights at Thomson Park.

• A donation in the amount of $50 was accepted from Sharon and James Mead.

• A donation in the amount of $1,000, in the name of Wells American Legion Troska Post No. 210, was accepted to be used to replace American flags in the city.

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