Local mayor recognized for work

Austin Mayor Award

AUSTIN, Minn. – It can be hard for rural Minnesota cities to be remembered at the State Capitol, but a local mayor is being recognized for his work keeping his community relevant.

Austin Mayor, Tom Stiehm earned the “Excellence in Service Award” from the Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities this month.

“I think it’s a battle all the time for everybody, but it’s a battle to maintain what we have now. We’re not trying to gain anything economically as far as funding from the state where we are. It’s a battle to maintain position where we’re at, as far as Local Government Aid and things like that,” Steihm said.

The coalition awards a city leader that demonstrates leadership and knowledge each year. Stiehm is being recognized for his work with Local Government Aid and economic development in rural cities.

“If we’re going to achieve any kind of success economically, it’s important that we keep our representation, and do not let the state legislators outside of our area forget about us. Rural Minnesota is important to Minnesota,” Stiehm said.

He said getting broadband internet into the outlying communities is the next hurdle in order to keep pace with the metro areas.

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