A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.
- Member for
- 4 years 5 months
WILLMAR -- Passage of the transportation bill this week is good news for the Kandiyohi Area Transit system. During KAT's operations board meeting Tuesday, Transit Director John Groothuis said the state funding package won't necessarily bring new money to rural transit programs, but it "shores up" the sources of funding. Because a seven-county sales tax will generate revenue for the metro transit system, systems like KAT won't have to compete against the metro system for state transit dollars from the motor vehicle excise tax. Groothuis said he appreciates the legislators who "had the courag
GROVE CITY -- A date for a new levy referendum was set, a new interim superintendent was selected and it appears a contract settlement with teachers is close at hand in the Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City School District. At its meeting Monday, the ACGC School Board agreed to ask voters to go to the polls May 21 to revoke the current levy of $650 and replace it with the new levy of $1,075 per pupil-unit. Also Monday, the board agreed to negotiate a contract with Roger Rueckert for up to 60 per-cent time as superintendent next year. The board late Monday also agreed to take its latest proposal bac
WILLMAR -- Kandiyohi County's public works director is a calm, soft-spoken man. But when Gary Danielson learned Monday afternoon that legislators voted to override Gov. Tim Pawlenty's veto of the transportation bill, his excitement couldn't be contained. "That is just wonderful news," said Danielson in a telephone interview.
WILLMAR -- Sen. Joe Gimse said he wants a transportation bill "in the worst way" but, in light of a looming state budget deficit, voted against the $6.6 billion transportation bill. The bill was approved Thursday in the House and Senate on a bipartisan vote, but vetoed on Friday by Gov. Tim Pawlenty. All area DFL legislators voted for the 10-year transportation package, which would generate new revenue by raising the gas tax and other fees for the state transportation system. Area Republican legislators were split, however. Besides Gimse, Rep.
GROVE CITY -- Instead of voting in three different towns, voters in the Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City School District will likely be voting only in Grove City during the next school levy election. The ACGC School Board will hold a special meeting at 6 p.m. today to consider passing a resolution to consolidate the polling locations, said Dr.
WILLMAR -- The transition in ownership of the boys' and girls' group homes from Kandiyohi County to the Prairie Lakes Youth Program has resulted in plans for a new year-round school to begin this summer. Darin Balken, executive director at Prairie Lakes, told the Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday that he's proposing to start a separate high school for the youth who are placed in the group homes. The school would be located in the same building where Prairie Lakes currently offers classes for youth at their secure and non-secure facilities, but it would be in a separate room.
WILLMAR -- An 18-county mental health consortium says the state's new system of providing mental health services has resulted in a shortage of beds in rural Minnesota for individuals with severe and chronic mental illness. As a result, jails are sometimes used to house people who should instead be in a mental health hospital. "The original plan isn't working," said Jay Kieft, Kandiyohi County Family Services director, during the Tuesday meeting of the Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners.
WILLMAR -- A new conditional use permit with a revised set of conditions was approved Tuesday for Holland Pork Inc. of rural Prinsburg. The Kandiyohi County Commissioners approved the permit to allow the cooperative to spread manure in the four sections of land that surround the city of Prinsburg. Under the original permit approved in 1996, the hog cooperative was prohibited from applying manure on farmland in those four sections. The exception is a small rectangle of land just north of the city limits.
WILLMAR -- The Kandiyohi County Commissioners are urging legislators to pass a transportation funding bill this week that includes a gas tax increase. Saying that new transportation revenue is essential for state and local governments to complete road and bridge projects that are long overdue, the commissioners unanimously approved a resolution Tuesday backing a "comprehensive and balanced transportation funding package." The board endorsed seven different revenue sources including an increase to the gas tax and license tab fees, trunk highway bonding, general obligation bonding for local ro
WILLMAR -- The issue of who should be qualified to "float horse teeth" is drowning at least one legislator in three years' worth of reports, studies, committee meetings and proposed legislation. Rep. Lyle Koenen, DFL-Clara City, said he hopes the issue can finally be resolved during this year's legislative session. "I'm tired of it," he said, with a light-hearted chuckle. Floating horse teeth involves smoothing down the teeth of horses with a file. It's a necessary routine because horse teeth grow perpetually and the sharp points can cut a horse's tongue and mouth.