A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.
- Member for
- 4 years 8 months
WILLMAR -- An 18-year-old Willmar man pleaded not guilty Wednesday to killing a Ridgewater College student last July. Miles David Edinburgh is charged with stabbing to death Adam Milton, 21. Milton, of Florida, was a football player for the college and had been taking summer classes here.
WILLMAR -- Edward Alan Ruchti, 30, of Watkins, pleaded guilty Tuesday to a felony charge of domestic assault by strangulation. The case had been scheduled for a jury trial this week in Kandiyohi County District Court. Under the plea agreement, a felony charge of terroristic threats and a gross misdemeanor charge of domestic assault were dismissed. Ruchti will be sentenced June 30. He was charged with assaulting his girlfriend, and threatening to kill her 5-year-old child, during an incident Feb.
WILLMAR -- The Kandiyohi Area Transit has been told not to expect a funding increase next year. The transit system is also bracing for potential cuts this year as it waits for Gov. Tim Pawlenty to finalize his unallotment of 2009 program funding. "We're definitely on alert to see what the governor's plans are," said KAT Transit Director Tiffany Collins. Eighty percent of KAT's funding comes from federal and state grants.
WILLMAR -- Ever since the bottom fell out of the economy last fall, more non-custodial parents are asking to make smaller child support payments There's a direct connection between increased job losses and increased requests for modifications to be made to child support payments, said Nancy Norbie, Kandiyohi County Family Services supervisor. That situation is happening in Kandiyohi County as well as in metro counties, she said. Norbie lets the figures do the talking. In the fourth quarter of 2007 there were 18 requests for child support modifications made to the county. One year later, i
WILLMAR -- Nearly 20 north Willmar homes were evacuated late Tuesday morning, and senior citizens moved out of danger after a two-inch natural gas line was cut. The incident happened at about 10:45 am when a utility crew hit the line on County Road 41, which is also known as the Radio Station Road. The high traffic road was blocked for about four hours while crews from CenterPoint Energy made repairs. Winds were blowing fumes into a nearby residential area where the line was cut. That prompted the Willmar Fire Department to go door-to-door to inform people about the potential danger and to
SWIFT FALLS -- Just as time and new grass can erase the signs of death on a battlefield, the same is happening in Swift Falls where a once hazardous site is becoming a park. Nearly seven years after a fire torched Midwest Cylinder, a business where thousands of old liquid propane tanks were being stored and refurbished, the cleanup process is nearly finished. Once Swift County completes the task of containing about seven yards of lead-contaminated soil, the county will receive a "no further action determination" letter from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. The three-acre site will th
WILLMAR -- For one day, each Kandiyohi County Commissioner had a chance to see what it feels like to go the desk at the Family Services Department, fill out a form asking for assistance and make an appointment with a case worker. On that same day, they got to feel the heavy weight that county social workers experience when they review cases of potential abuse of children or vulnerable adults. They also witnessed the complicated maze of regulations and endless state-mandated paperwork social workers complete for multiple programs, like screening elders for long-term care assistance and determ
WILLMAR -- What is a tough market to many could bring potential savings to Kandiyohi County. The county is considering refinancing the 1998 bond that helped fund the Health and Human Services building on the north edge of Willmar. If the current interest rates continue, the county could save $800,000 over seven years, according to Carolyn Drude, the county's financial consultant from Ehlers. She warned, however, that the market could change between and now and the potential July 21 bid date. In March, Drude predicted the county's savings would be $450,000.
BENSON -- Concerned that the potential closure of Benson's only General Motors dealership could cause hardship to the community and residents, the Swift County Board of Commissioners took a public stand this week to defend the business. On a unanimous vote the commissioners approved a resolution urging General Motors to keep Swenson Motor Company open and operating. The Benson City Council and Economic Development Authority are expected to take the same action, said Byron Giese, Swift County Auditor. It's hoped that official statements of support from local governments will persuade the tro
ATWATER -- Atwater residents are still mulling whether the city should renovate the historic Hotel Atwater and turn it into a city office, or walk away and keep city services where they're at. The city's Economic Development Authority is looking for volunteer committee members to research those options so that an informed decision can be made. A community meeting on the issue Tuesday drew about 20 people and generated a lot of questions about the financial feasibility of restoring the once-grand hotel.