David Little covers the Willmar City Council, Willmar Municipal Utilities and other city news.
- Member for
- 1 year 10 months
WILLMAR -- The Willmar Municipal Utilities finished 2009 with net assets of almost $600,000 after all revenues and operating expenses and other costs were calculated, according to the annual audit presented Monday to the Municipal Utilities Commission. The audit, presented by Larry Wepplo of Conway, Deuth and Schmiesing of Willmar, was accepted by the commission.
WILLMAR -- The city of Willmar has completed and submitted an environmental assessment review that officials hope will lead the Federal Aviation Administration to release its authority over the old airport and let the city redevelop it into an industrial park. The land release formally releases the city from any obligations under previous FAA grant agreements that existed for the airport property, said Bruce Peterson, director of city planning and development services. "That's why they call it a land release, and it allows us to take full control of it and it eliminates any interest at all b
WILLMAR -- The Willmar City Council has approved extending the intergovernmental transfer payment agreements with Rice Memorial Hospital and the Municipal Utilities, each for another three-year term through 2012. Rice pays the city an amount equal to .40 percent of 1 percent of prior year net assets for the following year. The minimum amount of the annual payment would not be less than $200,000.
WILLMAR -- Howard Hong was about 18 years old and was working as a teller in the downtown Bank of Willmar when members of the "Machine Gun Kelly'' gang entered the bank on the morning of July 15, 1930, robbed the bank of $70,000 and wounded three people in the process. A newspaper account of the robbery said one of the gang members ordered employees in the posting room, where Hong worked, to lie down on the floor at the bank where Howard's father, Peter, was president. Howard "was a minor player for sure but still quite present for the whole robbery,'' said Todd Hong of Eden Prairie, a nephe
WILLMAR -- When Raymond Peterson finished four years of Army service in World War II, he looked for a business to buy. In 1947, Peterson bought a Willmar shoe store that had been in business since 1932. For the next 37 years, Peterson and his wife, Muriel, owned and operated Peterson Shoe Store in downtown Willmar. They also owned the Betty Lou Dress Shop next door. Peterson became involved in local activities and was always willing to lend a hand.
WILLMAR -- The city's list of proposed 2010 street improvements includes a project requested by the Willmar School District to build a 1,170-foot road from Roosevelt Elementary School to 15th Avenue Southwest. The road will be used by school buses and will improve school safety and parking, said City Public Works Director Mel Odens. Buses now use the parking lot in front of Roosevelt on 19th Avenue Southwest. In the future, buses will enter the lot behind Roosevelt from 15th Avenue Southwest.
WILLMAR -- The Willmar City Council on Monday ordered the city engineering department to prepare the improvement report for proposed 2010 street projects and related work estimated at $3,721,492. This year's projects cover 1.2 miles of reconstruction on segments of 10 streets, 1.23 miles of overlay on segments of three streets, .39 mile of new construction on two streets.
WILLMAR -- Bruce Torell thought there must be a cleaner and faster way to change the gear lube in the lower units of his outboard motors, so his company invented one. "You either use a small tube like a big tube of toothpaste to fill the lower unit or you buy a small soap dispenser-type pump that you pump into a quart of lubrication and it's a messy job,'' the Willmar man says. "It's time-consuming.
WILLMAR -- Willmar Municipal Utilities is obligated until November 2011 to continue making $22,806 monthly payments toward planning costs of the failed Big Stone II project, according to the head of one Big Stone partner. Monthly outlays by Willmar and 12 members of Central Minnesota Municipal Power Agency of Blue Earth are paying off bonds that were sold to finance their share of planning costs for the $1.6 billion Big Stone proposal. The whole idea of financing was to make payments dependable for everybody in the interest of everybody, said Robert Schulte, Central Minnesota chief executive
WILLMAR -- Work on the city's new wastewater treatment plant will reach a milestone today when the structures at the site are energized for the first time with permanent power. Replacing temporary power with permanent power means construction of the structures and electrical and mechanical systems is substantially complete, says Rhonda Rae, program manager in the Willmar office of wastewater project consultant Donohue and Associates. Rae said work on the plant, in addition to construction of sewer lines leading to the plant and other associated projects, is on schedule and under budget.