A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers county government and regional news with the West Central Tribune.
- Member for
- 2 years 7 months
WILLMAR -- Kandiyohi County Commissioners and other county officials who were elected in the 2006 general election were sworn into office on Tuesday. Court administrator Teresa Fredrickson administered the oath of office to Commissioners Harlan Madsen, Richard Falk and Dean Shuck during the board's organizational meeting. All three were re-elected to office in November. County Auditor/Treasurer Sam Modderman, Sheriff Dan Hartog, Attorney Boyd Beccue, Recorder Julie Kalkbrenner, Surveyor Duane Bonnema, Soil and Water Conservation Supervisors Roger Rasmussen and Terry Schaefer and Coroner Dr.
If the Legislature doesn't act soon, land that's been set aside for a new state park near Litchfield could be lost. Sen. Steve Dille, said he's going to make every effort to make the Greenleaf State Park a reality. Although this isn't a year to pass a bonding bill, the Dassel Republican said that when the 2007 session starts Wednesday, he's going to pursue efforts to get money to start buying land for the park. In 2004, legislation was passed to establish Greenleaf State Park, but so far only $500,000 has been allocated.
KANDIYOHI -- Owners of a new housing development near Swan Lake are asking the Kandiyohi Township supervisors to condemn a privately owned road and turn it into a township road. A majority of the owners of the road object. The township supervisors will hold a hearing on the proposal at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the township meeting hall in Kandiyohi. The road leads to Swan Lake Estates, a new housing development owned by Ricky and Angee Whitcomb of Lake Lillian.
Legislation that would create jobs in small towns, make sanitary sewer projects affordable in low-income communities and reduce liability insurance so that small ski hills can operate are some of the issues local legislators will be promoting at the Capitol next year. The 2007 session begins Wednesday. Area lawmakers agree that statewide issues like reforming health care, increasing funding for education and transportation and property tax relief will occupy much of the legislators' time next year. But legislators have more localized projects they're also eager to work on. Rep.
WILLMAR -- Joe Gimse was catching some post-Christmas sales this week, looking for accessories for his Senate office at the state Capitol. As the new senator from District 13, Gimse, R-Willmar, will be taking a fair amount of office equipment, and a long list of requests with him to St. Paul. Since being elected Nov. 7 and defeating longtime Sen.
WILLMAR -- New federal rules that require people to have passports to fly to places like Canada and Mexico after Jan. 23 has been keeping the Kandiyohi County Recorder's office busy. The number of passports the office typically processes on a given day has doubled, or even tripled recently, said Recorder Julie Kalkbrenner. In the past, the county office processed about a dozen passport applications each day.
MADISON -- The daughter of a missing Lac qui Parle County woman says she doesn't understand how her 79-year-old mother could have disappeared this week. Verene Raaf has been missing since about 10 p.m. Tuesday after receiving a blood transfusion at a Madison hospital. Authorities were alerted when Raaf did not answer phone calls made to her home by nurses. "Nothing is fitting together. You can't just disappear with a car," said Raaf's daughter, Jan Kirchberg, on Thursday morning.
Don Hanson likes to say he "makes sawdust." What he really makes are one-of-a-kind cribbage boards where players could end up spending more time studying the board than their cards. Unlike traditional rectangular cribbage boards where players plod up and down the rows of holes with their plastic pegs, Hanson's cribbage boards take players on a journey around tortured annual growth rings and knobby growths that document the past life of a tree that has new life as a game board. For the last 28 years, Hanson has been reading the unique wood grains and gnarly twists of trees to create cribbage
GROVE CITY -- The Minnesota Department of Education will be asked to give the Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City School District more time to resolve its budget problems. Superintendent Pamela Kyllingstad said school board members met Monday with Dr. Charles Speiker, from the Education Department, to discuss options for dealing with the district's statutory operating debt. Schools in statutory operating debt don't have enough money in their net unreserved general fund to meet state financial standards.
WILLMAR -- The Kandiyohi County Commissioners reluctantly agreed Tuesday to approve a 6.5 percent rate increase as part of a contract with a state program to treat people with chemical addictions. The contract is with the Community Addiction and Recovery Enterprise of Willmar, which is located on the Willmar Regional Treatment Center campus and formerly called the Bradley Center. Commissioner Richard Falk said he would vote for the rate increase "once" but didn't want to see another large rate increase in the future. Chairman Dean Shuck said it was unusual to see such a large rate increase