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 -- Area counties are under the gun to complete a regional mutual aid agreement or risk losing federal Homeland Security funding. On Tuesday the Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners approved a four-page mutual aid agreement that the county hopes will be acceptable to 17 other regional counties. The plan would provide a legal format for sharing employees, volunteers, equipment and other resources during a widespread disaster -- such as pandemic flu. A committee worked on the Kandiyohi County agreement for 1½ years, said Kandiyohi County Emergency Management Director Don Ericson.
WILLMAR -- Kandiyohi County may pick up the slack in state and federal funding in order to help more teens stay healthy and out of permanent foster care. For about $5,000 the county could help about 24 youth that would otherwise fall through the cracks created by stiffer state restrictions. The Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners learned about the situation Tuesday when members met as the Family Services Committee.
WILLMAR -- A "first-of-its-kind" report about the health and well-being of fathers and families in Minnesota could be the first step in creating policies and programs that could help men become better fathers. The ultimate result would be healthier children. The report, which was prepared through a collaborative effort between the Minnesota Fathers and Families Network and St.
GROVE CITY -- Voters in the Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City School District voted down a school operating levy by a 110-vote margin on Tuesday. The unofficial vote was 1,053 to 943. Voters in Cosmos and Grove City approved the levy by a 62-vote margin. Voters in Atwater, however, voted against the levy by a 101-vote margin. "Frustrated" was how Superintendet Pamela Kyllingstad summed up her feelings about the election results. This was the third time in three years, and the second time in three months, that a levy referendum had been held in the district.
ST. PAUL -- A Spicer man was reappointed this week by Gov. Tim Pawlenty to serve on the Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee. Antonio Tejeda, an attorney with the Willmar law firm of Anderson, Larson, Hanson and Saunders, will serve a four-year term on the committee, which provides advice and recommendations to the governor and the State Legislature on issues, trends and practices of the state's juvenile justice system.
WILLMAR -- Action on a conditional use permit to expand a livestock operation near Kandiyohi was delayed Monday until March 12. The Kandiyohi County Planning Commission agreed to delay action after the applicant, David M.
WILLMAR -- During the last 15 years, 488 tons of hazardous waste that can be found in most people's homes was recycled or packed up and shipped out at the Kandiyohi County Household Hazardous Waste facility in Willmar. In 2006, the center processed 46.9 tons of hazardous waste, said Carol Schmiesing, the household hazardous waste director. Typical household hazardous waste includes latex and oil paints, pesticides, weed killers, acids, solvents, fuels, pharmaceuticals, aerosol cans and fluorescent bulbs that contain mercury. "There's some nasty stuff out there," Schmiesing said. Collecting
WILLMAR -- A public process was set in motion Tuesday to review the potential environmental effects of two gravel pits near Eagle Lake. The Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners unanimously approved an amendment to an environmental assessment worksheet the county originally approved in 2003. That decision is the first step in a process that will include a new public comment period on the worksheet.
WILLMAR -- A nonprofit agency that provides training and employment opportunities for people with disabilities is purchasing the Home State Bank building in Kandiyohi. The purchase will allow the Kandi Works Developmental Achievement Center to consolidate administrative offices, expand retail sale of products and provide additional room for programs for older clients. The Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners agreed Tuesday to lend the organization $260,000 to purchase the building, which has been vacant since Jan. 10 when the bank moved its operation to Willmar.
WILLMAR -- A report shows two proposed gravel pits near Eagle Lake would not have cumulative potential effects to the environment. The report, prepared by Willmar engineering company Bolton and Menk Inc., will be presented at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday to the Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners. The study on the gravel pits was conducted as a result of a Supreme Court decision in 2006.