A reporter for 35 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.
- Member for
- 5 years 4 months
ATWATER -- A recent increase in the number of mailboxes being installed on street corners and curbs has the Atwater City Council looking for ways to control their placement. "They seem to be popping up like mushrooms everywhere," said City Clerk Goldie Smith. There's concern the mailboxes on city streets will interfere with snow plows, said Smith.
People who own agricultural, seasonal or recreational lakeshore properties may have had a heart-stopper over the weekend when they opened their proposed property tax statements. It wasn't unusual for those estimated taxes to be 20 to 40 percent higher than last year, said Kandiyohi County Assessor Tim Falkum.
WILLMAR -- A new ordinance approved Tuesday prohibits animals from running on the loose in Kandiyohi County. The ordinance was passed unanimously by the county commissioners following a public hearing. Chairman Dennis Peterson said he fielded numerous calls from residents thankful the issue was addressed. Some people who move to the country think they can let their dogs run wild when they can cause many problems for farmers, said Peterson, who had about 70 sheep killed by neighborhood dogs in the 1980s.
ATWATER -- The city of Atwater has received a second grant for a proposed project to renovate the town's historic Hotel Atwater. The Minnesota Historical Society approved a $90,000 grant last year and last week notified the city that an additional $35,500 grant had been approved. "It's really exciting," said City Councilman Mark Olson, who's also on a committee that's been studying the hotel project.
WILLMAR -- Kandiyohi County officials say the 16-bed adult mental health hospital that opened a year ago in Willmar could be closed down while the state makes another adjustment to how mental health care is provided. State officials, however, denied the hospital would be shut down but said it may be "reconfigured" to serve a different type of patient who is currently falling through the cracks. That change could be made "without shutting it down," said Read Sulik, Assistant Commissioner for Chemical and Mental Health Services. Whatever the future holds for the psychiatric hospital, local of
WILLMAR -- The transition of the state's only behavioral health hospital for children and adolescents was celebrated Thursday in Willmar. State officials praised the 16-bed acute care facility as a demonstration of the state's willingness to "step up to the plate" and provide specialized quality care for youth who suffer from the most severe and complex forms of mental illnesses. The Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health Services is part of the state's "safety net" for children with mental illness, said Dr.
LITCHFIELD -- An agreement has been reached between Meeker County and Hutchinson Area Health Care for the payment of services for mentally ill individuals who require 72-hour acute care. The county had refused to pay the bill for the last four to five years, resulting in a $47,000 debt. The hospital filed a lawsuit a couple weeks ago. Meeker County Administrator Paul Virnig said the county did not pay the bill because there was no formal contract between the two entities and because the county believed the charges were too high. Virnig said the county "wasn't disputing that it owed money f
LITCHFIELD -- The Litchfield School District is operating with one less principal this school year. The school board accepted the resignation this week of High School Principal Mike Goodrum, Goodrum, who was hired as the principal in 2007, had been on medical leave since the beginning of this school year. His resignation was effective Oct. 31. Superintendent Bill Wold said the district does not plan to hire a replacement for the 2009-10 school year. Instead, Middle School Principal Pat Devine will be filling both roles.
A fire last month at Kandiyohi County's landfill that spanned 10 days cost more than $100,000 to put out. The county will have 30 days to pay the $103,058 bill to the city of New London. "It's kind of where our guestimate was at," County Administrator Larry Kleindl said. "Would I like it to be smaller? Yes. But it is what it is." The county received the final bill Monday. Kleindl said he'll take this week to review and verify the invoice. He had questions about the different prices participating fire departments charged for foam used to smother the fire.
BENSON -- What started out as a seemingly simple request to allow mini trucks to travel on Swift County roads could end up back in the lap of state legislators. After struggling with the issue for about a month, the Swift County Board of Commissioners agreed that the best solution may be to seek changes in the mini truck legislation that went into effect in August in Minnesota. "I don't think the statute was really thought through well enough when it was passed," said Swift County Attorney Robin Finke in an interview Wednesday. Following state law, Benson car dealer Kentt Habben asked the S