City Administrator Question and Answer

Welcome to the new City Administrator column.  This column will be a place where you can learn about different things happening in the city.  If you have questions on a specific topic that you would like to hear about, please let me know by emailing

What is the status of the Community Center Project?

The City of Fairmont has contracted with 292 Design Group for architectural and engineering services, Kraus Anderson for construction manager services, and Tegra for owner’s representative services.  These consultants form the design team for the community center project.  The design team is currently working with a group of stakeholders from the community and the Community Center Advisory Board on conceptual designs.  The design team will then put together cost estimates for the concept designs.  While this is going on, we are also working with the Fairmont Area Community Center Foundation/YMCA and the Fairmont Youth Hockey Association to look at operating and maintenance costs for the conceptual designs.  We have set a goal to have this information compiled and ready to present to the public for input in mid-October with a decision on a conceptual design occurring in November.  Stay tuned for future updates on this project.

I have been hearing a lot about the city’s charter, what is it, and what does it do?

Cities in the State of Minnesota are either statutory cities or charter cities.  In Charter cities the City Council and government derives its powers from the Charter and can exercise any power granted under the Charter so long as it doesn’t conflict with State Law.  In contrast a Statutory City derives its powers from Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 412, and can only use those powers granted to it by the Legislature. 

A city Charter deals with the fundamentals of the governmental organization of the city, leaving the council free to exercise a broad grant of authority by ordinance.  Of the 853 cities in Minnesota approximately 107 are charter cities.  The remaining cities are statutory cities. 

The City of Fairmont adopted its first Charter in 1901.