March 7th - It is stated that a Supplemental Environmental Assessment Worksheet (EAW)* has been received from Bradford Development for the Mankato Motorsports Park Project. City staff is currently in the process of seeking proposals from consultant to complete a Third-Party Review. Staff expressed that the developer has not offered to pay for the supplemental EAW, whereas the developer paid for the initial 3rd party review on the original EAW. Included in the packet for this meeting was a letter from the City Administrator to the Mayor and City Council members, twice stating that the cost would be paid for by the project proposer, Bradford Development.
*There is no legal process for a "Supplemental EAW". This is, in fact, a supplemented EAW. It is not a separate entity from the original EAW, it is information obtained to fulfill the initial requests in the EAW.
It is explained that this supplemental information pertains to the two issues not adequately discussed in the EAW: impact on wildlife and the cumulative effect on climate change. Should the city have a third-party review and it's completed, the EAW will move on to publication and the public comment period will be open to the public and agencies to submit comments. For this period the comments are to pertain ONLY to the supplemental information - not the entire EAW.
Council votes and approves to receive estimates from third-party reviewers and contact the developer to determine who will pay for the review.
This is a privately funded project and should be fully paid for by the developer.
Mid-March: "STOP" signs replace the "Yield" signs at the intersection of Hwy 14 and CSAH 17/27. This is to make drivers stop and observe oncoming traffic before completing their left turn from Hwy 14 onto CSAH 17/27. Personal experience has noticed MANY drivers blowing right through the STOP sign as though the "Yield" was still there. This is also NOT stopped the westbound illegal U-turns that are common at that intersection.
April 4th - Meeting packet includes received bids from Houston Engineering, Inc. (who did the original third-party review) and Braun Intertec. At the March 7th meeting it was stated that the city has to accept the lowest responsible bid. While the Houston Engineering bid is nearly $8,000 cheaper, they also missed the the lack of information that has brought the project to this stage.
Included with the bids is a letter from the City Administrator to the Mayor and the City Council. In this letter is it stated that: "The developer is not required to pay for a third-party review and has recently expressed that while compensation from him for the second 3rd-party review isn't unjustified, he feels that an effort to share the expense could be an equitable alternative for all parties". Again, this is a privately funded project. It should not be on the city to cover any of the cost. Had due diligence (or even careful reading) been done during the last review this step likely wouldn't have been necessary.
There is also a letter from the City Administrator to the Mayor and the City Council regarding nearly 80 acres initially desired for this project. Ownership has changed hands and the current owner has plans they want to address. Owner has stated that they are a separate entity from the proposed project and the developer claims the sale of the parcel will not affect the viability of his project and it could move ahead without the parcel. Given that part of the course and a driveway were located on the parcel, one can expect to see a modified plan to appear at some point. The question is, at what point is it no longer what the public and agencies reviewed?