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BE Council reverses decision

New ‘Welcome to Blue Earth’ sign moved back north

June 10, 2016
Chuck Hunt - Register Editor ( , Faribault County Register

A new proposed 'Welcome to Blue Earth' sign is back to being placed at its original site.

The Blue Earth City Council voted 4-3 on Monday night to change the location back to the one originally proposed about two miles north of the city, where County Highway 6 connects with State Highway 169.

Last month the council voted to change the location to one south of I-90, next to the northernmost roundabout, near the Dairy Queen, where a Chamber of Commerce sign is currently located.

However, Mayor Rick Scholtes, who was not at last month's meeting, asked that the issue be back on the agenda for further discussion.

"I think we put a lot of time and effort into the selection of the site on Highway 169," Scholtes said. "I don't see what is wrong with it. And there already is the Chamber's sign by the Dairy Queen."

Councilman Glenn Gaylord said he felt the sign needed to be on the south side of I-90.

"All the people who exit off of I-90 will never see the sign there (north on Highway 169)," Gaylord said. "And those folks coming off of I-90 are likely new visitors to be welcomed to our city and they will miss the sign. That is why we went with it by the Dairy Queen."

Scholtes responded that people coming off I-90 already know they are coming off at the Blue Earth exit.

"And why should we use taxpayer money for a new sign (at the roundabout location) when there already is a sign there?" the mayor added. "We could still put a smaller version of the new welcome sign there if you wanted to."

City administrator Tim Ibisch agreed that it would not cost a lot more to add the smaller sign by the Dairy Queen site and have the larger one on the northern location.

However, a motion by councilman Marty Cassem was to move the location of the new sign back out on Highway 169 north of I-90, and just leave the Chamber sign at the roundabout.

Gaylord made one more point that he felt the city should not spend $10,000 on a sign that would be in a spot where the majority of visitors to the city would not even see it.

The vote to move the sign back to the north site passed on a 4-3 vote.

Councilmen Cassem, Russ Erichsrud and Dan Warner voted yes to the move, while councilmen Gaylord, John Huisman and Dan Brod voted no.

It was mayor Scholte's yes vote that broke the tie.

The council did agree to keep the plan in place to put a sign on the south edge of the city, around the intersection of Highway 169 and 21st Street.



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