December 3, 2015 Meeting Minutes

All Stewards Meeting—December 3, 2015, 7 a.m.

Attending: Allan Schroder, Hal Leland, Mary Matteson, Rick Schara, Erin Smith, Greg Wagner, Amy Baldwin, Ryan Miller, Warren Low, Larry Schulz

Amy Baldwin welcomed those in attendance and asked to begin with introductions.

Library Renewal Project

The meeting began with an update on the Library Renewal project.  Erin Smith distributed materials containing an updated schematic design, project cost estimate and FAQ sheet.  Highlights noted oi the schematic design include: expanded children’s area with a large early learning activity and programming room, more lounge seating around a fireplace and near windows, six flexible meeting/study rooms or various sizes/capacity, 100 person multi-purpose room, increased number of computer stations with a technology instruction area, expanded teen section with more seating and computer stations, expanded staff work areas and larger, more accessible restrooms, including a family restroom.

The next phase is design development phase that will provide a final project cost.  Smith mentioned that the City Council has resolved to move forward with a sales tax referendum to be used as part of the financing.  Warren Low mentioned that he has been helping the library through the planning process and explained his background with the project and why the library is important to the City of Fergus Falls.  Low also mentioned that the West Central Initiative Foundation is helping the library with their donation fund by hosting the donation fund as an intermediary partner.

Larry Schulz mentioned how well the process has been led by Smith and the Advisory Board and wished them well on the rest of the process.  Mayor Hal Leland talked about the referendum process for sales tax portion of funding.  Leland mentioned that the financing has to be approved by the public and the legislature and therefore the project plan must be rock-solid in order for approval by both.  Schulz and Leland mentioned that continued help and promotion for the project will still be needed to ensure the project is approved and completed.

Healthy Community Initiative

Larry Schulz provided an update on the healthy community initiative derived from the destiny driver to “Become Minnesota leader in spiritual, behavioral and physical health.”  Schulz mentioned that their initiative has 9 goals and handed out a sheet with details on the goals.  Schulz provided brief updates on each goal.

  1. Increase number of community garden adult volunteer groups from 6 to 12 and the number of youth volunteer groups from 7 to 10 by May 15, 2016.

Update: More volunteers are still needed.  There have been many repeat volunteers.

  1. Increase number of Fergus Falls participants in the healthy restaurant initiative from 2 to 5 by December 31, 2015.

Update: The Lake Region Healthcare cafeteria has offered to be a pilot for this initiative and will offer healthy alternatives.

  1. Launch “Streets Alive” during summer 2016.

Update: Working with “Shop, Move and Groove” event to combine retail, fun and active living during the 2016 summer downtown event.

  1. Have 3 additional Fergus Falls businesses apply for bike friendly business designation or advance to next level.

Update: Fergus Falls has been designated as a Bronze level bike friendly community.

  1. Lifestyle Medicine goals (by September 2016):
    1. 60 patients (5 patients a month) – referred and attend the first two complimentary 30 minute sessions
      1. From those 60 patients, 60% (36 patients) engage in the programs beyond the first two appointments
      2. From those 36 patients, 40% (24 patients) engage long term in our programs and/or alternate community programs
    2. Create and implement a pre/post evaluation tool that incorporates the 7 components of Wellness
      1. This would be used for those clients that complete the discounted 10 session package in addition to the first two complimentary appointments
    3. Collaborate with an OTCPH or LRH Dietician and incorporate 1 visit for each referral
  2. Develop “Live Well Fergus Falls” branding strategy by May 15, 2016.

Update: Schulz provided drafts of branding logos that have been designed.

  1. Complete Fergus Falls loop of North Country Trail by June 4, 2016.

Update: Allen Schroder provided an update on the North Country Trail.  A formal trail association is being developed and includes approximately 8 members.  The association meets Thursday evenings at the Spot.  An application has been submitted to the national trail association headquarters in order to be officially recognized.  The application should be approved in December.  Route planning is under way and will rely on individual land owners to “bless” the trail through private property rather than rely on public right-of-ways.  The typical trail would include native soils and walkable grass areas.  The national association will provide signage once a route is developed.  Other grants are being sought to additional equipment.

  1. Increase number of teams participating in Corporate Cup from 12 to 20 in 2016.
  2. Cooking/canning classes – goal pending.


Amy Baldwin mentioned that Otter Tail Telcom was successful in their request for funding for two broadband expansion projects during a very competitive grant cycle.  Both projects include the expansion of broadband in the greater Fergus Falls area.  Rick Schara mentioned that this could have a positive effect on the workforce development effort that includes the telework initiative.

Larry Schulz mentioned that the Rural Health Model received funding for health information sharing/coordination.  The Rural Health Model includes LB Homes, Pioneer Care, Lakeland Mental Health and Lake Region Healthcare.

Schulz also mentioned that they hosted a “community conversations” event that asked the community to discuss health needs.  Advanced care planning was identified as a need and grant funding has been received for this type of planning.

The new Lake Region Healthcare clinic is set to open on December 14.

Mary Matteson mentioned that there will be a tour of senior living options on December 10.

Rising Minnesota will be hosting the “West Central World Café” event on December 15.  The event is intended to ask millennials about their ideas and suggestions for improving workforce development among that generation.  Chet Bodin from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development will be facilitating the event.

Hal Leland suggested that everyone drive to the RTC in the evening sometime to check out the new lighting that illuminates the tower.  Leland also mentioned that the two Schlossman buildings are lit up and the streets are alive.

Amy Baldwin mentioned that the 2016 meeting schedule includes a change in date, time and location of meetings.  Meetings will be on the 1st Friday of the month at Noon and located at the Keller Williams Realty basement conference room.  The change was made due to results of the community survey that suggested a change could help with attendance.  Baldwin mentioned that the January meeting, which will be on the 2nd Friday due to the New Year’s holiday, will focus on revisiting the destiny drivers in order to focus on priorities moving forward.  The meeting time and location will be heavily advertised.

The meeting ended at 8:08 a.m.

Next Meeting: Friday, January 8, 12:00 p.m. at Keller Williams Realty Office (basement conf. room)

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