Sisterhood saved

City re-signs lost documents

File Photo Mayor Chuck Barney and Stephanie Hoffart, president of Minot Area Development Corp., sign a Sisters Cities agreement with Skien, Norway, Sept. 27, 2017. The document went missing, prompting the cities to re-sign and ratify the agreement this month.

Lost documents led the Minot City Council Monday to act to ratify Minot’s Sister Cities arrangement with Skien, Norway.

Then mayor, Chuck Barney signed the Sister Cities agreement Sept. 27, 2017, during Norsk Hostfest, along with Jan Terje Olsen with Skien’s city council. Documents also were signed by representatives of Ward County, Minot Area Development Corp, Minot State University and Norsk Hostfest, indicating the economic, cultural and educational scope of the agreement.

“It came to our attention with the Sister City visit this year that the document had not been received in its signed form by our sister city, so when we did some records research, we found that, in fact, we couldn’t find the signed copy either,” City Manager Tom Barry said. “We have since talked with our representatives across the ocean and they have re-signed the document and we’ve had our people re-sign the document. Although it was done and we have pictures of it being signed, we couldn’t find the document and, ironically, neither could the sister city. So we’ve all essentially re-signed.”

The Minot City Council ratified the re-signed agreement.

Minot’s relationship with Skien goes back to 1980. Informal efforts to facilitate an exchange were formalized with the signing of the first sister cities agreement in 1993. Minot and Skien have a shared cultural heritage, ancestral ties and similar size and character.

Council member Josh Wolsky noted a Minot State University choral group will be representing the community in traveling to Skien next May.