A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers county government and regional news with the West Central Tribune.
- Member for
- 1 year 3 months
WILLMAR -- The threat of losing $1.23 million in federal funding over the next five years for Kandiyohi County's family service programs has providers and recipients concerned about the effects of those cuts. The cuts were approved in the federal budget reconciliation bill, but it's not known exactly how the bill will be interpreted and exactly where the cuts will be made.
WILLMAR -- The cost of purchasing new camera equipment could be a factor in deciding whether or not the Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners starts broadcasting its meetings on the local cable access channel, WRAC 8. Another factor is whether broadcasting the meetings would be a good thing -- or not. During the board meeting Tuesday, Commissioner Richard Falk said he wanted time to hear from the community on the possibility of broadcasting the meetings before making a decision.
WILLMAR -- Confidence in the qualifications and leadership experience of an existing employee is one of the reasons why the Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners chose not to advertise or seek outside candidates in selecting a new county administrator. It was announced last month that the County Board intends to hire Family Services Director Larry Kleindl when the current administrator, Wayne Thompson, officially submits his resignation this summer. The commissioners did not advertise, either internally or externally, for the position.
Under state law, a county administrator is appointed by a county board and serves at the pleasure of that county board. The process that county commissioners use to select an administrator can vary from county to county. Kandiyohi County Commissioners recently announced that they intend to hire Family Services Director Larry Kleindl as the new administrator, after County Administrator Wayne Thompson retires. The county did not post the county administrator job internally to allow other county employees to submit applications nor did they advertise for applicants outside the county.
WILLMAR -- The Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners may have violated the state's Open Meeting Law when members reached a decision -- outside a public meeting -- about who to hire as the new county administrator. The county denies there was a violation but has referred the issue to its legal counsel with the Minnesota Counties Insurance Trust. It was announced last month that the Kandiyohi County Commissioners have decided to hire Family Services Director Larry Kleindl as county administrator when longtime administrator Wayne Thompson retires later this year. The informal decision was no
ATWATER -- Since 1956, the public library in Atwater has been housed in an old, two-story downtown brick building. Equipped with desks and shelves that were either there from the beginning of time or hand-me-downs from the Willmar library, the Atwater library's 874-square-foot space is too small for the existing materials and programs. Lynda Behm, who's been the Atwater librarian since 1994, manages to keep good humor about the tight space and some unattractive features, like mold in the dank basement where she goes when only absolutely necessary.
WILLMAR - Support and opposition are mounting for a constitutional amendment that would dedicate all revenue from motor vehicle sales tax to transportation programs in Minnesota. The amendment will be on the November ballot. The joint powers board for the Kandiyohi Area Transit agreed Friday they needed more information before weighing in on the issue. The Transportation Alliance had sent KAT a sample resolution seeking support for the amendment. The Alliance currently has a list of about 130 different government entities and businesses, like highway engineering and construction firms, tha
WILLMAR -- A recommendation to put security cameras in the Kandiyohi Area Transit buses was approved Tuesday by the KAT operations board. The cost is estimated at $18,300. The recommendation will be forwarded to the joint powers board for final approval. The joint powers board, which is made up of members of the Willmar City Council and Kandiyohi County Board, meets Friday morning. The operations board had initially discussed putting cameras in two or three buses every year to stager the expense.
GROVE CITY -- Revisions to a plan designed to get the Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City School District out of statutory operating debt by June 30, 2008, were approved Monday by the School Board. The district submitted a plan to the state earlier this month but was asked to make several revisions, including removing potential revenue from a future levy referendum. District residents voted against a referendum Dec. 1 that would have raised $438,000 every year for seven years.
ATWATER -- A tie vote Wednesday by the Atwater City Council on whether to allow a local business to provide liquor set-ups on Sundays was approved when the mayor cast the deciding yes vote. Toby Giese, from McPete's II Sports Bar & Lanes, had made the request after it was discovered he had been providing Sunday set-ups -- nonalcoholic beverages to be mixed with patrons' own alcohol -- without a license. According to a draft of the City Council minutes, Councilman James Olson said the issue should be put on the ballot and decided by the town's residents during the fall's general election. Fo