A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers county government and regional news with the West Central Tribune.
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WILLMAR -- The Kandiyohi County Commissioners will close a portion of their meeting today to discuss settlement options in a lawsuit brought against the county by Jay Morrell Building Investments LLC. The lawsuit was initiated after the commissioners denied the company's request for a conditional use permit in October of 2005 for a private demolition landfill at a site in northern Kandiyohi County. The company has corporate headquarters in Monticello and operates concrete plants in New London, Alexandria, Morris, Wadena and Hutchinson as well as a roll-off business that collects, transports
WILLMAR -- Elaine Boyd's 23-year-old son, Zachary, will be coming home from Iraq this summer, about four months later than expected. The Willmar woman gave a heavy sigh when asked about news that 3,000 Minnesota National Guard troops, including her son, were having their deployments extended. "It's been a blow," said Boyd, who was quick to add that she and her husband, Kent, are "very proud" of their son. Boyd was one of about 100 people who attended a 2½-hour seminar on Monday at Roosevelt Elementery School in Willmar.
NEW LONDON -- Ever since Norman Peterson was 12 years old and stocked shelves and candled eggs at the Big Store, he has spent nearly every hour of his 55-year working career at the New London grocery store. Other than a few months he spent working at a competing grocery store in Willmar during his early years, Peterson has either worked at or co-owned the Big Store. He is one of just a handful of people who have owned the town's only grocery store during its 140-year history. "This has been my life," said Peterson. That changed on Jan.
WILLMAR -- Permits for burning brush piles or fields in Kandiyohi County will now last one calendar year. In the past, the permits for burning piled materials were issued for a 30-day period and permits for "running fires" lasted for two weeks. At a meeting Monday with the county's fire chiefs, law enforcement and Department of Natural Resources, it was agreed to change the permit length for both types of fires to one calendar year. That means all permits, no matter when they are obtained, will expire Dec. 31.
WILLMAR -- Having a burning permit that lasts until the end of the year doesn't give landowners a carte blanche to burn whatever, whenever or wherever. There are rules that go along with the permit, said Jim Steffen, DNR conservation officer for Kandiyohi County. A dose of common sense when it comes to burning also helps, he said. A person is required to have their permit with them while they conduct a burn.
SPICER -- There will be no ice castle in Spicer for next week's annual WinterFest. Members of the Spicer Commercial Club and owners of the Wee Kut Ice Company decided on Thursday to cancel plans to build an ice castle, said Lori Campbell, administrative assistant for the club, which sponsors the event. This weekend was the last chance to build an ice castle out of Green Lake ice for the festival, which beings on Friday, said Campbell. A long stretch of warm weather resulted in thin ice and left planners with no chance to build the structure, which has been a popular feature of the annual Sp
GROVE CITY - This may be the last year that Pamela Kyllingstad will have the job as superintendent in the Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City School District. Last week the ACGC School Board voted unanimously to open up Kyllingstad's contract for negotiations for the 2007-09 school years. The board had approved a three-year contract with Kyllingstad last fall. The board will "look at putting a new superintendent in place," Kyllingstad said on Tuesday.
BENSON -- The Swift County Board of Commissioners is struggling to decide whether one person, or two, is needed to fill two vacant county jobs. During a special meeting Friday morning, the commissioners spent nearly two hours discussing options but agreed they weren't ready to make a decision. They gave themselves a Jan.
BENSON -- Swift County Commissioner Pete Peterson of rural Benson on Friday made his first appearance at a County Board meeting since being injured this fall in an accident. Peterson, who represents District 3, was injured Nov. 11 in a hunting accident that led to a car crash that landed him in the Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis with a severe head injury. Peterson had cut himself in the leg while hunting. As he attempted to drive himself to the doctor, he blacked out and his vehicle struck a tree.
KANDIYOHI -- The parties involved with a tug-of-war over whether a Kandiyohi Township road should be kept private or turned into a public road were told to try to negotiate a settlement by the end of the month. If they can't reach a settlement by 7 p.m. Jan.