MONTROSE, MN – Dale Powers, who had served as Montrose’s city clerk-treasurer since October 2017, has been relieved of his duties by the Montrose City Council.
According to the Wright County Journal-Press, the council approved the termination on a 3-2 vote during a special meeting April 19.
Mayor Michelle Otto and councilmen Lloyd Johnson and Roy Henry voted in favor of the termination, while Councilman Ben Kuehl and Councilwoman Jill Menard opposed the action.
Initially, the meeting had been posted as a closed special meeting to review the performance of an employee subject to the council’s authority. It became a public meeting at Powers’ request.
Minnesota Newspaper Association attorney Mark Anfinson stated he believes the handling of the meeting was a violation of state open meeting law.
A closed meeting cannot be opened for action if it was posted as a closed meeting, according to Anfinson.
He also noted that, once the meeting became public, the council should not have proceeded at the scheduled time for the meeting because the posting referred to a closed meeting that the public would not be able to attend.