A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers county government and regional news with the West Central Tribune.
- Member for
- 2 years 8 months
WILLMAR -- The Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners did a little cutting and a little shifting Tuesday in the proposed 2007 budget to reduce the levy a couple percentage points. The levy had been set to increase 7.8 percent under the original $58 million budget. After a two-day process of going over the budget line by line, the preliminary budget was reduced $208,000.
WILLMAR -- The Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission may take matters into its own hands to make sure that a 16-bed adult mental health hospital is located in Willmar. The Economic Development Commission is exploring the feasibility of building the psychiatric hospital and leasing it to the state. Not only could it serve as a profitable venture for the EDC, it would also provide ab-out 35 jobs, which co-uld offset job losses when the adult mental health program closes at the Willmar Regional Treatment Center. "It's not only jobs, it's keeping a valuable asset
WILLMAR -- A $58.6 million budget that's being proposed for Kandiyohi County next year is being scrutinized this week by the County Board of Commissioners. If the budget is approved as is, the levy would be set at $25.3 million, which would be a 7.83 percent increase from 2006.
WILLMAR -- A proposal to bring sanitary sewer services to homes on three lakes near Spicer was presented to nearly 400 people who attended informational meetings over the weekend. Those residents will now have to mull over the facts and figures and decide if the project goes forward or not. The Kandiyohi County Commissioners will ultimately have the final vote, but Commissioner Dennis Peterson said that action will be based on "what a majority of the people want." Peterson said residents of George, Nest and Henderson lakes will likely be asked to vote on the project.
SPICER -- A project to install a low-pressure sanitary sewer collection system around Lake Florida is progressing well and earning high praise from property owners. Jim Gunter, who lives on the east side of the lake, said there have been "no complaints" from the lake's residents. "It's going very, very well," said Gunter, who is also a member of the Lake Florida Improvement Association. Rather than digging a trench to install the four-inch service lines to the individual lots, a method called "directional boring" is being used to slide the lines under roads without disrupting the surface.
WILLMAR -- Political slogans supporting House candidate Bonnie Wilhelm in two Barn Theatre play programs and the presence of her campaign literature in the box office have raised questions about the community theater's tax-exempt status. One of the restrictions on tax-exempt, nonprofit organizations is a prohibition from directly or indirectly participating in any political campaign on behalf of a candidate. The incidents apparently occurred without the knowledge of the board of directors, but at least one member of the staff sees no potential violations of Internal Revenue Service rules. I
WILLMAR - Kandiyohi County Commissioner Harlan Madsen is at home, recuperating from prostate surgery. The 57-year-old Lake Lillian farmer and 12-year member of the county board had a radical pros-tatectomy on Monday at Rice Memorial Hospital. His entire prostate was removed in the procedure. Madsen was discharged on Thursday af-ternoon.
WILLMAR -- Plans to build an enclosed bus shelter near Selvig International Park in downtown Willmar are bogged down in a legal search involving a national communication company and two family trusts. Willmar City Attorney Richard Ronning has been assigned to find the appropriate representatives, including officials from Qwest's Denver office, and ask for their authorization to put the shelter on the boulevard on Becker Avenue and Fourth Street Southwest. Until there's a response, the Kandiyohi Area Transit will hold off designing the bus transfer shelter, which is estimated to cost $75,000.
WILLMAR -- A proposal to put a sanitary sewage collection system around George, Henderson and Nest lakes near Spicer will be discussed this weekend with property owners. The meeting comes on the heels of a decision made last week by the Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners to shelve a similar proposal for Diamond Lake near Atwater because of objections from property owners. Meanwhile, construction is under way to install a sewage collection system around Lake Florida west of Spicer.
ATWATER -- A trusted tool of the Atwater community for more than 20 years needs a new home. The city has been trying to sell its old fire truck for four months, but hasn't had any takers yet. The pumper is in good shape and works well, according to City Clerk Goldie Smith. It has a 1975 chassis, 1978 model apparatus, pumps 100,000 gallons a minute and has 11,000 miles on it. It's also cheap. The asking price is $5,000. The Atwater City Council got an update on the situation at its meeting Wednesday.