Metro briefs: Critical fracture closes historic Stillwater courthouse

Washington County officials temporarily closed the county’s Historic Courthouse this week after the discovery of a fractured truss, one of four that support the 152-year-old building’s roof.

Design architects and engineers from HGA discovered the fracture during an inspection after someone removed attic insulation to examine the trusses. It’s now feared that the loss of one truss has placed more load than originally intended on the remaining three. The closure is expected to last one to two months, according to Washington County spokesperson Yvonne Klinnert.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the courthouse was already undergoing a $5 million renovation of its roof, dome and cupola; design work on the renovations began last year.

The oldest standing courthouse in Minnesota, the structure opened in 1870 and saw official business until 1974.

Matt McKinney

Dakota County

Four vie for County Attorney seat

Dakota County Attorney Kathy Keena will face three challengers in November to keep her job as the county’s top lawyer.

Former state Sen. Matt Little and attorneys Elizabeth Lamin and Jeff Sheridan had all filed to run as of Tuesday’s deadline.

Keena has served as county attorney since last year, when she was appointed to the seat following longtime County Attorney James Backstrom’s retirement. She previously worked in the County Attorney’s Office for more than two decades.

Little, an attorney who owns a Lakeville law practice, became a Lakeville City Council member while still in college and the city’s youngest mayor in 2012.

Lamin, who emigrated with her family from the former Soviet Union, has been a prosecutor for 16 years and started her career in Stearns County, according to her website.

Sheridan is an attorney who lives and works in Dakota County, his website said.

Erin Adler

Plymouth

City hires new parks and recreation director

Plymouth has a new parks and recreation director.

Jennifer Tomlinson — who has served as deputy director since February — will oversee the city’s Recreation, Volunteer Services and Parks and Forestry divisions, which put on community events and coordinate educational opportunities, athletics, arts, music and other programming. She will also oversee the Plymouth Community Center, Plymouth Ice Center and Plymouth Historical Society.

Tomlinson took over the top parks role from Diane Evans, who retired in February. She officially started the director job on Wednesday.

Tomlinson was previously parks superintendent in Boise, Idaho, where she worked for 17 years before coming to Plymouth.

“Parks and Recreation is one of the most rewarding fields a public servant can engage in,” she said. “I am excited to continue leading the Plymouth Parks and Recreation team in service to the community.”

Tim Harlow

Minnetonka

New city manager selected

Minnetonka has extended an offer to one of four finalists for the city manager job.

Mike Funk, the acting city manager, has 26 years of local government experience. He previously served as assistant city manager and director of human resources for Maplewood and city administrator for Minnetrista and Olivia.

Geralyn Barone retired as city manager in September 2021 after nine years in the role and a 26-year career with the city, and the City Council appointed Funk as acting city manager. He was appointed assistant city manager and director of administrative services in September 2019.

Funk was the top candidate following interviews with three finalists conducted by city department directors and a community panel Wednesday, and the council Thursday.

The council selected finalists from a group of 11 candidates chosen by an outside consultant from among 47 applicants.

The other finalists were Jeffrey Dahl, Wayzata city manager, Philip Kern, Delano city administrator, and Cynthia Steinhauser, deputy city administrator for Rochester.

Kim Hyatt

https://www.startribune.com/metro-briefs-critical-fracture-closes-historic-stillwater-courthouse/600179258/