St. Paul Council’s Bostrom calls for Park director’s resignation after $800,000 legal settlement

St. Paul City Council Member Dan Bostrom on Thursday called for the resignation of the city parks director, saying it was his fault that the city council had to approve a legal settlement of $800,000 to the company that runs the Como Park pavilion restaurant.

Bostrom was the only “no” vote on the settlement Wednesday to Black Bear Crossing.

The company had sued the city, saying the city was illegally ending a long-running contract to operate the restaurant in the city park.

Bostrom said Mike Hahm, the city’s Parks and Recreation director, should resign for getting the city into this expensive mess.

The Pioneer Press, though, says Mayor Chris Coleman stands firmly behind Hahm, who’s been a city worker for 30 years and head of the department for five years.

A little more intrigue: Hahm is dating City Council Member Amy Brendmoen, who represents the Como area. Both are single. But Brendmoen was absent for Wednesday’s 5-1 vote to approve the settlement.

The city has terminated the Black Bear contract, saying it hadn’t provided accurate financial information, as required, and was generating far less revenue than restaurants in Minneapolis parks. And many thought it’s prices were high and variety of offerings low.

But then David Glass — owner of Black Bear Crossings, so named because Glass is a member of the bear clan from the White Earth Band of Ojibwe — sued the city, and a judge ruled he could sue for damages. The $800,000 settlement ends the case, which was scheduled to go to trial next year.

The city is now looking for a new vendor to run the restaurant.

Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 09/01/2014 - 01:15 pm.

    $800,000. Wow.That is more

    $800,000. Wow.

    That is more than 8.4% of the $9.6 tax increase Coleman just saddled his constituents with, right there. How many miles of city owned goat paths will go unrepaired to pay this off?

    Can’t wait to hear the sob story Coleman comes up with to tell the legislature next year during his annual “we’re broke” concert.

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