A reporter for 35 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.
- Member for
- 5 years 5 months
LITCHFIELD -- Meeker County Commissioners approved an abatement agreement Tuesday that will give a local dairy processor up to $190,000 in tax rebates over a 20-year period. The city of Litchfield has taken similar action. The Litchfield School District is not participating in the abatement. The abatement will be a "small part" of a major expansion project planned by the First District Association, said County Administrator Paul Virnig. The first phase of the expansion is estimated at about $19 million and will help double the capacity of the facility to process milk.
WILLMAR -- There are some elderly or disabled residents who live so far off the beaten path in rural Kandiyohi County that volunteer drivers with the local meals-on-wheels program are unable to drive there. As a result, some of those vulnerable adults have gone without meals for days at a time. "They are a small niche population, but they are a needy population," said Jay Kieft, family services director, during the county board meeting Tuesday. Those individuals, who are on the county's Medicaid waiver program, will now be receiving two weeks worth of frozen meals delivered from Iowa to the
WILLMAR -- The Kandiyohi County Commissioners are hesitant to use federal recovery zone bonds as an economic development tool for themselves, but they agreed Tuesday to extend the offer to municipalities in the county. The county has access to $522,000 in bonding authority for public infrastructure and $783,000 in bonding authority to assist private industry.
EDITOR'S NOTE: This story has been updated to correct the victim's hometown to Kandiyohi.
WILLMAR -- The Kandiyohi County Commissioners will discuss whether to apply for a federal stimulus program at their meeting Tuesday, which beings at 10 a.m.
KANDIYOHI -- When the Kandiyohi Fire Department needs to fuel up its fleet of trucks, the firefighters have to drive four miles to Willmar. If the small town's public works department workers need gas for lawnmowers or other equipment, they have to drive to Willmar to fill up a gas can. "It's a hardship on the city. We have to run to Willmar to get gas," said City Clerk Sue Kidrowski. "We're only four miles. But that four miles is four miles." The scenario is repeated for residents needing a gallon of milk or a loaf of bread.
SPICER -- An education about being respectful -- and not a new ordinance -- will be pursued next year in an attempt to curb what some perceive as rude behavior on Green Lake. "When we say educating, we mean everybody. Lakeshore owners and lake users both," said Kandiyohi County Commissioner Dennis Peterson.
For a woman who takes her community theater seriously, getting a bit part in the Coen brothers' new film, "A Serious Man," was pure fun. "It was an opportunity to see how a major film was made," said Deb Nelson of rural Spicer, who's eager to see the movie, which opens Friday. She'll be looking for glimpses of the "gorgeous lime green" dress she wore in the synagogue during the bar mitzvah scene and the "ugly gray double-knit" dress she wore in the funeral scene.
WILLMAR -- There's a list of government regulations local business leaders say they want revoked so that they could get on with the business of doing business. The one that really gets the goat of some of those in the construction industry is a requirement to follow the prevailing wage scale when they get a contract for state or federal government projects. Prevailing wages increase the cost of government-paid construction by 10 to 20 percent, said Richard Breitbach, president of Breitbach Construction, of Elrosa.
GROVE CITY -- Another classroom at the elementary school in Cosmos is being leased by the Southwest/West Central Minnesota Service Cooperative for a special education and autism program. The cooperative began leasing most of the rooms in an empty wing of the school this summer for the program. At their meeting Monday, the Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City School Board approved a contract to lease another room to the organization.