A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.
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WILLMAR -- Like many central Minnesota communities, Kandiyohi County has benefited from tax incentives designed to help new and expanding businesses. But Steve Renquist, executive director of the Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission, said Thursday that if all the state programs were eliminated, the county would be just fine. "We'd find other ways to get the job done," said Renquist, when asked to respond to the latest tax proposal that calls for eliminating state business subsidies, including the popular Job Opportunity Building Zones. As long as JOBZ is take
WILLMAR -- Kandiyohi County veterans will be meeting today in Willmar to hear words of thanks for their service, and get advice on how to receive the benefits they deserve. By accessing a $5,000 state grant, the county's veterans service office is hosting the appreciation day seminar from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.
WILLMAR -- While initially getting stiffed, two Kandiyohi County projects have now been added to the Senate's version of the 2008 bonding bill. Sen.
WILLMAR -- The Kandiyohi County Commissioners said Tuesday they want to know how much it has cost to defend the county in gravel pit lawsuits that have stretched on for five years. While pleased with the latest outcome in a legal battle against a citizens' group over the environmental review of gravel pits near Eagle Lake, Chairman Richard Larson said the county's defense has likely come at a high price. "I'm sure it's staggering," said Larson. The county is not directly paying for the legal defense. From the beginning of the process the county's insurance, Minnesota Counties Insurance Tru
WILLMAR -- Kandiyohi County has won the latest round in litigation regarding the environmental review of gravel pits near Eagle Lake. In a ruling filed March 10 by District Judge George I. Harrelson of Marshall, the court ruled in favor of the county and Duininck Bros. Inc. of Prinsburg. Harrelson wrote that the Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners took a "hard look" at the environmental issues when deciding not to require Duininck Bros. Inc.
WILLMAR -- A proposal for the state to take over fraud investigations of county-administered public assistance programs has apparently been put on hold for this year. County family services officials, say, however, that they fear the proposal will resurface next year. The Department of Human Services told the Minnesota Fraud Investigator's Association in December they intended to put a proposal before Gov. Tim Pawlenty to have the state take over the fraud prevention investigation program.
WILLMAR -- Jose Hildalgo Lopez, who is here illegally from Honduras, has been sentenced to serve 86 months in prison for assaulting a woman July 3 in Willmar. When his sentence is completed, he will be deported to Honduras. "There is a (Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement) hold on him and he will be deported," said Connie Crowell, first assistant Kandiyohi County attorney. Lopez had originally faced four felony charges for stabbing, strangling and raping a woman during a domestic assault at his home.
NEW LONDON -- The Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners left the county seat of Willmar on Tuesday and held its regular meeting in New London, which was also a county seat at one time. From 1858 to 1870 the current-day Kandiyohi County was split in two. The northern half was called Monongalia County, with the county seat located in New London.
WILLMAR -- The Senate bonding bill that was approved Tuesday, and the proposed House bonding bill that was released Monday, are vastly different when it comes to projects for Kandiyohi County. The difference is all or nothing. The House bill includes nearly all of major local requests while the Senate bill includes none. "It's short on local projects all across the state," said Sen. Joe Gimse, R-Willmar, in a telephone interview Tuesday. "It doesn't surprise me.
With two Republican Party conventions to attend last weekend in his district, Rep. Bud Heidgerken knew he'd be walking into the lion's den. He seemed to come out unharmed. As one of six Republican House members who voted to override Gov.