A reporter for 35 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.
- Member for
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WILLMAR - A town hall meeting to discuss the 2010 census will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday in the training room at the Willmar fire station. The "Complete County Committee" meeting will be conducted by the Minnesota State Demographic Center. It will feature a short presentation on what the committees do, why they are important and how to form them. Minnesota is one of a handful of states in jeopardy of losing a congressional seat through the reapportionment that will follow the census.
WILLMAR -- Catherine Harris had struggled with mental illness for years, but in 2003 she hit a low point. She said she'd failed at school and work and had left a suicide letter on her computer. "I felt like I was a failure.
Steeped for years in Norwegian culture and language, the northern Kandiyohi County community of Sunburg will be celebrating Syttende Mai in full fashion next weekend. At 1 p.m. Saturday, May 16, a gallery showing of the artwork of the late Jack Norman will be on display at the Kultur Hus, followed by a 2 p.m. piano concert by Carsten Bjornstad. On Sunday the activities begin with a tractor pull at 11 a.m. at the Glacial Plains Cooperative, on the north end of town.
NEW LONDON -- Before the city of New London starts hacking away at its proposed 2010 budget, the council wants to know what its residents are "willing to live without." Is reducing or eliminating its police contract OK?
WILLMAR -- Kandiyohi Area Transit is preparing to launch a new bus route that is designed to get workers to work on time -- and then take them back home. KAT was awarded federal funding to initiate the Job Access and Reverse Commute program in Willmar.
BENSON -- A disparity in how the cost and services are shared between Swift and Big Stone counties for the sentence-to-serve program has been resolved. The Swift County Board of Commissioners approved the new two-year contract at its meeting Tuesday. The two counties have shared the sentence-to-serve program since 2005. Coordinated by the Minnesota Department of Corrections, participants from both counties are picked up every day and driven to work sites in both counties to perform community service tasks.
ATWATER -- The city of Atwater has reached a financial settlement with a former part-time police officer who was cleared of criminal sexual conduct charges. In a unanimous vote Wednesday, the council approved a negotiated settlement to pay Paul Schmidt $7,500 in legal fees and $15,803 for 14 months of back pay that he'd been denied after being charged in the case. The League of Minnesota Cities, which is the city's insurer, will pay all the costs. As part of the agreement, Schmidt has resigned from the Police Department.
ATWATER - The city of Atwater has reached a financial settlement with a former part-time police officer who was acquitted of criminal sexual conduct charges. In a unanimous vote Wednesday, the council approved a negotiated settlement to pay Paul Schmidt $7,500 in legal fees and $15,803 for 14 months of back pay that he'd been denied after being charged in the case. The League of Minnesota Cities, which is the city's insurer, will pay all the costs. As part of the agreement, Schmidt has resigned from the police department, even though he never went back to the job after being accused of grop
WILLMAR -- Bids for two major road projects were approved Tuesday by the Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners. Both projects came in well under the engineer's estimate and both contracts were awarded to Duininck Bros. Inc. of Prinsburg. The low bid to rebuild a three-mile section of County Road 41, known as the Radio Station Road, and a short portion of County Road 24 that goes to the Willmar golf course, was $2,705,695. That number was $381,894 below the engineer's estimate of $3,087,589. There were two other bidders: Central Specialties Inc.
WILLMAR -- The clock is ticking for the 70 percent of Diamond Lake residents who need to bring their non-conforming septic systems up to code by the state's July 2010 deadline. So far there's been no agreement on the type of replacement system, even though there is agreement that the current failing system needs to be fixed. "We're not leaning either way, but we want this settled," said Harlan Meints, a member of the Diamond Lake Area Recreation Association.