Willmar City Council honors outgoing councilman Dokken
WILLMAR -- Mayor Marv Calvin said he was surprised when Jim Dokken walked into his city hall office July 22 and submitted his letter of resignation from the Willmar City Council.
WILLMAR - Mayor Marv Calvin said he was surprised when Jim Dokken walked into his city hall office July 22 and submitted his letter of resignation from the Willmar City Council.
“It kind of set me back on my heels,’’ Calvin said Monday night when the council honored Dokken for his years of service to the city. “It was quite a surprise. But I certainly do value your opinion to be able to spend more time with family.’’
Calvin presented a plaque to Dokken, who attended the meeting along his wife, Hilde, and son, Tom. Calvin thanked Dokken for attending the meeting ”so we can properly recognize you.’’
Calvin said Dokken represented residents of the Fourth Ward since he was first elected on Nov. 3, 1998, and took office on Jan. 11, 1999. During Dokken’s term of office, he served on the Finance Committee and Labor Relations Committee, and was liaison to the Municipal Utilities Commission, Rice Hospital Board and the Airport Commission.
Calvin said Dokken’s long military career enabled him to represent the veterans of Willmar, and Calvin said Dokken continues to be instrumental in Memorial Day activities and the Flags of Honor Park, along with assisting with Veterans Day at the City Auditorium. The nearly two dozen people in the audience stood and applauded as Dokken came forward to receive the plaque.
Dokken first thanked God for the strength in his life.
“There are highs and lows in your life, and he’s always there whether it’s high or low. He’s there to help. That’s his job,’’ Dokken said.
Dokken said it’s a blessing to be finished with council work. But he said he did enjoy every minute, every committee meeting and retreats.
“We had a lot of fun, and it’s just time to say goodbye,’’ he said.
The council voted to buy a $67,769 Bobcat Toolcat from Farm-Rite Equipment Inc., of Willmar, for the Civic Center to replace a forklift that does not meet safety standards for indoor use and was recommended for replacement. The 2015 capital improvement program budgeted $60,000 for the purchase. The remaining $7,769 cost will be covered by reallocating unspent equipment funds.
The council voted to buy a 2015, $128,356 John Deere loader with snow pusher, from RDO Equipment, of St. Cloud, through a state contract. Public Works Director Sean Christensen said the 2015 capital improvement program budgeted $222,000 for the purchase. The new loader will replace a 2000 loader, which has mechanical and repair issues.
Also, the council approved the $24,395 purchase of agrilime from Bryan Rock Products, of Shakopee, and $2,000 in miscellaneous expenses for parts and rental equipment to complete the drainage and warning track rehab project at all five fields at North Swansson and fixing drainage on the Orange Baseball Field.
Wal-Mart grants sought
The council voted to apply for two $1,000 grants from the Wal-Mart Foundation.
One grant, if approved, would be used for DARE Program instructor training and development, and curriculum materials for students.
The other grant would provide money for gift cards in the Shop With a Cop event, in which law enforcement officers volunteer their time to assist underprivileged children in shopping for holiday gifts.
Habitat buys lot for house
The council voted to sell a city-owned lot in Pleasant View Addition to Habitat for Humanity of West Central Minnesota for $1 to allow Habitat to construct a 5-6 bedroom house. The city received the property as a gift a number of years ago. The property is valued at $6,300 and has approximately $9,600 in special assessment. Habitat has said the assessments will be passed on to the house buyer.