As Jason Unger offered parting comments on his time serving on City Council for the City of Flandreau. He urged those selecting his replacement to look long and hard at the person sitting in from of them in the audience that night.
Unger’s last meeting as a City Council member was Monday, November 15. He has held a seat since 2018 and would be up for re-election in 2022. But having just moved to a new home outside of city limits, Unger is not eligible to represent Ward 2.
In the audience was Erica Knippling, a resident in the same ward and one of the people Unger has had a chance to visit with about possibly taking over for the remainder of his term. Knippling, a wife and mother, is also an IT Specialist with Avera Health, and very active in the community. She has expressed an interest in serving out the remainder of Unger’s term.
“I think she represents a different group of people that might not always be heard here and I think that’s important,” Unger told the group. He pointed out that another woman would be an important step to better diversity the Council. Currently, Karen Tufty is the only other woman serving in that capacity.
Unger’s seat will be left open until someone is appointed. Mayor Dan Sutton said that he hoped to have an official nominee selected before the meeting in December. The Council could then approve the appointment or look at other recommendations.
Unger thanked his fellow Council members saying he felt the role had been valuable and fulfilling. “From day one, I’ve been invested here and have given my best to be a part of the decision making and ensure everyone’s voices are heard.”
Also heard at the last City Council Meeting:
On behalf of the Moody County Happy Youngster’s 4H group, Liam Knippling helped to present a check for $2,900 to City Council for the “Joint Door” project. The group raised money through grants, bake sales, sucker sales and through other individual donors to add a handicap accessible entrance for the Janklow Community Center. The club fundraised for almost 3 years for the project since it was a higher cost one. The next community service project was voted on yesterday at their club’s latest meeting and members will be building ADA compliant picnic tables for the Moody County Fairgrounds.
“This project gave our 4H members the opportunity to practice civil engagement, fiscal responsibility and project management, all skills we will be able to use in our futures, so thank you. We look forward to working with the city on future projects that better our community,” Knippling read in a statement.
Council members and Mayor Sutton thanked the members for their hard work and told them they looked forward to other opportunities to work together in the future.
Sioux Valley Energy invited Council members to a planning session on Monday, November 22nd in Colton to hear about Revive 2030, a program that will work to connect communities to resources for economic development, community planning, placemaking and grant writing. Members of the Flandreau Economic Development Corporation are also invited.
City Administrator Jeff Pederson offered updates on several projects underway, including work being done both on the City Pool to better seal the floor and on work being done on the Japanese Gardens at City Park. Mention was also made of a project being done in conjunction with SD Rural Water and a GPS Locate System to map out the city’s water grid. If you notice flags along your street, that is the work being done.
Wards were also slightly revised due to the recent Census but with only minimal changes.
All local liquor licenses were also renewed for 2022.