NYM EDA looks into internship program opportunity

Photo by Tucker Henderson
The NY Mills City Council and EDA board recently sold the 110 South Main Avenue building, the former Southside Grocery. A business plan for the property is in the works.

By Tucker Henderson


The monthly meeting of the Economic Development Authority of New York Mills held much discussion of ideas for the coming year during the morning of Feb. 15.

An expressed interest in offering a social media marketing internship for a local student was discussed as a way to promote NY Mills interests. A suggestion of a joint internship between the NY Mills EDA and Civic and Commerce was discussed by the EDA.

Blaine Novak explained some opportunities between the NY Mills School to Work program, as well as Youth Service Training could potentially be an option in the future. He noted that the school has recently appointed a School to Work opportunity coordinator and the program has a lot of possibilities within the community. The program has been around for about 25 years.

Novak brought up another topic of a family resource center which Otter Tail County received a grant to fund within the county. He mentioned that the City Center would be a viable option to bring the resource center to town, but there are others in neighboring communities that are also interested. He mentioned a possibility of a shared resource center where the program would be offered in both communities, with availability being shared between certain week days.

Julie Roberts, city clerk, noted that the 110 South Main building has been advertised in the Dispatch asking for bids. 

One bid was received and was approved at the city council meeting Feb. 14. The EDA board, which manages the property, ratified the approval and accepted the bid. A business plan was also submitted by the bidder before approval from either municipal entities. 

The former Southside Grocery building was sold as is, for a total of $24,000. A purchase agreement will be forthcoming from the city.

Latham Hetland gave an update on NYM2025 and mentioned that the group has been meeting regularly. They are working towards the process of the Welcoming Communities grant and that deadline has been pushed to the fall in order for the seven month process to be adequately completed.

Discussion of the economic developer position that the EDA board has been working towards opened up some alternate options. 

Rural Solutions Services is a new consulting business in the area with economic development experience, so a board member will reach out to seek more information. The city council also approved a resolution to open up EDA funding to pay for individual consultants, rather than one specific developer.

In other news

• A bid was accepted for the road installation in the South Point addition. Everything should be set to go for the construction of the anticipated 60-unit apartment building in the same location.

• A representative from Otter Tail Power will be coming to the March meeting to discuss potential economic development services provided through the company. Novak mentioned that the representative had worked with the school previously.

• Plans for several summer events in NY Mills were shared and the importance of collaborating with businesses in town was stressed for this year’s events.

• The Community Development Grant was discussed and noted that it is something that the board will be working on during 2023.

• The Kahilainen home is being finished in the Country View addition and the EDA is looking into a promotional campaign for the Country View addition.

The next meeting will be held March 8, 2023 at 8:30 a.m. in the NY Mills City Hall.