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A committee will draft a home rule charter for Lincoln, following unanimous approval by the Lincoln City Council on Thursday.

“A lot of communities smaller than us are getting a nice chunk of change; this town needs it,” Mayor Gerarld Wise said.

Linda Brosious, Tyler Nieuwsma, Jessica Holcomb, Hailey Kilmer and Lance Hagen were named to the committee. Hagen will act as chairman.

The committee will have a year to draft and present the charter to the council, which has 60 days to two years to put it to a public vote.

Parks

A re-drafted ordinance for park land within the city also was given its first reading at the council meeting.

If approved, it will require developers to give 2.5 percent of platted land for community park or open space with options to give fair market residential land value or swap an equivalent portion of land they own outside the plat.

The re-drafted ordinance also clarified that the land could be left or returned to its natural state.

Lance Hagen, a developer present at the meeting, said the ordinance was reasonable and “going in the right direction.”

Employee pay

The council approved raises for five city employees, retroactive to the first of the year. It also established a new policy for granting raises: Employees performance and cost of living will be reviewed for a potential raise every year on the anniversary of each worker’s start date.

The total for raises this year came to $14,400, putting the council slightly over budget.

Resignation

With the resignation of city councilwoman Toni Zainhofsky Jan. 29, the police department portfolio was split between councilmen Erv Fischer and Tom Volk.

Wise said he would post the open seat in the city newsletter, but he does not expect it to be filled as elections are approaching.

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Reach Jessica Holdman at 701-250-8261 or jessica.holdman@bismarcktribune.com

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Business Reporter