Courtesy Michael Meuers
The Chairman, the Commissioner, and the Mayor meet. Red Lake Chairman Darrell G. Seki, Sr., invited Bemidji Mayor Rita Albrecht to a luncheon meeting in July. They were joined by Beltrami County Commissioner Tim Sumner.

Red Lake Officials to Hold Rare Meeting with Bemidji City Council and Mayor

Michael Meuers

Red Lake Chairman Darrell G. Seki, Sr., and members of the Red Lake Tribal Council will travel to Bemidji on Monday, September 15, 2014, to meet with the Bemidji Mayor Rita Albrecht and the Bemidji City Council to discuss issues of mutual concern.

The rare government-to-government meeting is scheduled from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Bemidji City Hall Council Chambers just prior to the City's regular meeting at 7 p.m.

Seki earlier had in invited Albrecht to a get acquainted luncheon on July 10 at Seven Clans Casino. Beltrami County Commissioner Tim Sumner who coincidently happened to be at the casino restaurant joined them. The County Board hosted an informal meeting with the Tribal Council on August 5.

"I want jobs for our people and to look for ways to invest in Bemidji, (and elsewhere) and to collaborate with local government and other agencies to create those jobs," Seki said at the time.

In concurrence, Albrecht tentatively invited Seki and the tribal council to meet with the city council and have an informal "get together" to get to know each other better…and to open communications and seek opportunities for collaboration in the areas of economic development and jobs. Albrecht suggested the city might be able to collaborate with the tribe on job training, health care, employment, crime, drugs, and alcohol.

Then recently, Albrecht wrote in an emailed invitation: "The City would like to invite the Tribal Council to meet with us in Bemidji. I suggest an informal meeting at city hall from 5:30-6:30 prior to our regular council meeting at 7:00 p.m. on Monday, September 15.

I don't think we need a specific agenda, but it would be interesting for each entity to introduce ourselves, clarify how we operate (e.g. what powers we have) and share our vision/plans for the next year. We would have refreshments and have an informal discussion."

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