Deer hunting-related issues dominated the discussion at what ended up being an unusually quick and problem-free meeting of the Mendota Heights' City Council on Tuesday night.
Having been unable to attend the last meeting as was previous scheduled, Police Chief Mike Aschenbrener was in attendance to discuss what he called the offer the “one option considered to be the best option” to help curtail the area’s rising deer population.
Aschenbrener proposed expanding the amount of city-owned public property that deer hunting would be allowed in during the designated hunting periods, a suggestion that Aschenbrener assured wouldn’t be akin to “hunting over a youth athletic field.”
In addition to expanding the amount of viable public deer hunting territory, Aschenbrener also suggested to the council to lessen deer hunting restrictions on private property, with citizens being able to request special permission to hunt deer on their own land.
Finally, Aschenbrener also approached the subject of making coyote hunting permissible due to the threat of the animals becoming “too climatized around people.” Coyote hunting would be allowed only as part of the already designated deer hunting periods.
All three of Aschenbrener’s proposals (which also included allowing one or two make-up hunting periods in the event of poor weather) pass the council’s vote unanimously.
Additionally, a December 4 date was set for the public hearing of the city’s levy and budget hearing, where citizens will be able to speak to proposed changes in property taxes, including a preliminary 3.99% increase to help fund programs including fire relief and various infrastructure repairs.
The council also approved $8,000 for repairs to the city’s skate park, half of which would come from a special parks and recreation fund.