Minnetrista’s Mayor appears to prefer council members not ask difficult questions or make comments at public meetings (on camera) about WSB Engineering, Minnetrista’s contract engineering firm. The video below shows Councilor Molitor being admonished (respectfully??) for not asking his questions prior to the public meeting regarding the costs of a WSB proposal. He exhibited considerable restraint. Watch the interchange cued up below:
A strategy long employed by the city to keep controversial topics out of view of residents is to have the City Administrator call each council member the morning of each council meeting. Council members are encouraged to air any and all questions during this scheduled call. While this practice helps the city control what’s brought up at the public meeting it deprives all the council members of hearing each other’s questions and concerns.
Minnesota has an open meeting law preventing serial communication among a quorum of council members outside of a public meeting. The city of Minnetrista violates the spirit, if not the letter, of that law by using the City Administrator as a conduit, fielding questions and influencing council members outside of public meetings.