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The proposed apartment complex from Keller-Baartman properties will be 75-85 units in the same lot where the Cannonball Truck Auto Plaza used to sit. The discussion was informational only. The screenshot was taken from city council documents.

The possible development of the McCannonball lot was discussed at the Cannon Falls School Board meeting on July 26 with no action taken. 

The discussion was informational only, giving the board members and administration a chance to talk about a possible apartment complex being established off of Fourth Street where the Cannonball Truck Auto Plaza used to sit. 

The city of Cannon Falls has discussed the Tax Increment Financing Plan at multiple meetings. The city is also holding a public hearing about the Tax Increment Financing District (TIF) during their next meeting on August 3. 

The McCannonball lot is 3.25 acres. According to board documents, the Keller-Baartman built apartment complex will have an estimated 75-85 units. 

During his reports, Superintendent Jeff Sampson told the board and members of the community that the city can choose to move forward with the TIF district regardless of the school’s support. 

Sampson also addressed a “rumor mill” regarding the school district’s involvement in the possible development, most notably how it ties into the achievement and integration plan that was passed at last month’s meeting. 

Sampson said in the meeting that nothing is related to the passing of the achievement and integration plan and the McCannonball site. 

Both the Cannon Falls and Red Wing school districts were identified as racially isolated by the state of Minnesota. Being identified as a racially isolated school district, according to the Department of Education website is, “when the difference between a district’s percentage of enrolled protected students is more than 20% higher when compared with at least one of it’s adjoining districts, the district with the higher percentage is considered racially isolated.”

To be eligible for funding and create an achievement and integration plan, two districts that are adjacent to each other need to partner. 

What are the costs of the proposed McCannonball apartment complex?

(Information taken from Tax Increment Financing Plan board documents)

  • Capital costs:

    • Land acquisition, $150,000

    • Site improvements, $3,519,248

  • Finance costs:

    • Bond & Note Interest Payments, $2,887,647

  • Administrative costs: $728,543

  • Total use of funds: $7,285,438

  • City’s tax share:

    • $3,832,733

  • County’s tax share:

    • $2,505,399

  • School district’s tax share:

    • $902,361

In an interview after the meeting, Sampson reiterated the district’s achievement and integration plan has nothing to do with the city and any of their plans. The city has also stated the district is not tied to any financing of the McCannonball project either. 

During the meeting, Sampson said having an apartment complex could encourage families to come to the district and is better than having an empty parking lot as they currently have it. 

“I think it’s a good thing for the district … what’s being generated there right now is nothing,” Sampson said about the proposed apartment complex. “So anything is a positive [thing].”

The board members and administration can speak to the TIF district during the city’s public hearing, if they so choose. There was no discussion amongst board members at the time. 

To watch a recording of the meeting, visit the Cannon Falls Community Television Youtube page

Other news

  • The board unanimously accepted the donations of $10,250 from Gemini to go towards robotics and the art department and $2,125 from the State of Minnesota to go towards Cannon Kids. 

  • The board unanimously accepted the milk bid from Hastings Creamery, LLC. The milk prices will cost $29,016.31 with the selected escalator cause. 

  • The board unanimously accepted the 2021-2022 school year coach and advisor handbook, the fall head and assistant coaches, membership to the Minnesota State High School League, and final list of fundraisers from district activities. 

  • The board unanimously accepted a change to a teacher master agreement to make the girls head coaching position split.

  • The board unanimously accepted the resolutions related to the long-term facility maintenance 10 year plan.

  • The board unanimously accepted a policy change for minimum fund balances. 

  • The board unanimously accepted their list of policies.

  • The board unanimously accepted a family and medical leave request for Steven Strauss from September 5 to October 5. 

  • The board unanimously accepted a change of title from associate principal to assistant principal. 

  • The board unanimously accepted a one year contract for #SocialSchool4EDU Consulting. 

To view the July 26 agenda, visit the following link. The board will meet next on August 23 at 6 p.m., in the high school boardroom.

Board members Anna Olson and Bill Thompson were not present for Monday's meeting.

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