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Council supports Home Initiative

WORTHINGTON — With little discussion, the city council on Wednesday offered its support to the Nobles Home Initiative.

Wednesday’s council meeting was a continuation of Monday’s regular meeting. However, with two council members absent Monday, there was no quorum. Therefore, no official action was taken.

Because of the per diems that can be paid to the council members and mayor ($50 per meeting), Wednesday’s meeting could cost the city an additional $300.

During the Monday meeting, Worthington Regional Economic Development Corp. (WREDC) Manager Abraham Algadi presented the Nobles Home Initiative. Through the program, any new housing development would receive five years of 100 percent tax abatement.

On Wednesday, the discussion was brief.

“Just to clarify, mayor, we’re just adding our support; we’re not endorsing the specific language, he’s going to come up with his own,” Council Member Scott Nelson said.

“He’s not going to come up with his own, the joint staffs are going to come up with it,” Mayor Alan Oberloh said.

Nobles County Commissioners had already offered their approval. County Administrator Tom Johnson spoke to that point during Monday’s discussion. On Wednesday, the city added its support.

The third leg, the school district, first heard of the proposal at a committee meeting Tuesday. Formal action is expected during Tuesday’s regular school board meeting.

Because the informational items were discussed Monday, the continued meeting lasted approximately 40 minutes.

Another item discussed was a special use permit for 501 Oxford St.

NutriPro Biosystems Inc. was approved for the permit to remove existing structures and replace them with new grain bin and corn receiving leg and pit.

The council added a requirement that the business have no accumulation of gravel on Oxford Street at the opening.

“I think we talk with them about the possibility of paving somewhat back, so at least the trucks can lose some of the gravel before they get into the road,” Oberloh said.

Council Member Diane Graber asked if the requirement would hinder the project.

“We should be able to take care of that,” said Dana Oberloh, speaking on behalf of New Fashioned Pork, which leases the property from NutriPro.

The council also approved a reduction in compensation from Lutheran Social Services for use of the Center for Active Living for the Senior Dining program. The new agreement cuts the cost in half, to $5 per day.

The last item of business was the council approving site preparation assistance for a building at 1425 N. McMillan St., with the cost not to exceed $13,000.

Community Content Coordinator Aaron Hagen may be reached at 376-7323.