Tom Cherveny is a regional and outdoor reporter with the West Central Tribune in Willmar, MN.
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WILLMAR -- Never before have so many projects come before the ditch authorities in Minnesota's agricultural counties seeking to improve drainage systems, redetermine benefits, add new laterals or make other expansions. And never before has the process taken so long to accomplish, according to Kurt Deter, an attorney specializing in drainage law with the Rinke Noonan Law firm. The Minnesota River Board agreed Monday at its meeting in Willmar to work with the attorney to develop a request for proposals in hopes of finding an independent contractor willing to provide the "viewer" services the l
OLIVIA -- Several years of planning for a joint recycling facility to serve Renville and Redwood counties has paid off with the announcement Thursday by Gov. Mark Dayton that the counties will receive a $1,898,750 grant from the state of Minnesota. "We're finally going to get some wheels under the project and we're ready to go,'' said Jon Mitchell, environmental director for Redwood County. His enthusiasm was shared by Marlin Larson, public works director in Renville County. "They're one of the best, shining stars in the state as far as recycling goes,'' he said of Redwood County.
WOOD LAKE BATTLEFIELD -- Since 1910, a one-acre site with a monument has been all that marked the final battle of the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862, and it is in the wrong location. The fenced site is located where Col. Henry Sibley camped, but not where the Battle of Wood Lake took place on Sept. 23, 1862. State officials will join the Wood Lake Battlefield Preservation Association at the actual battlefield site at 1:30 p.m. on Sept.
OLIVIA -- The Renville County Food Shelf in Olivia will reopen on Wednesday, just 10 days after an arson-caused fire destroyed its contents. The food shelf will open its doors at 10 a.m. Wednesday at 108 South Ninth Street in Olivia, or about one block north of its former location in downtown Olivia. The new location is in the Dirk's Home Theatre building, and offers both ample space and the convenience of a downtown location. Volunteers started erecting shelving in the new location on Friday, and have refrigerators and freezers ready as well.
GRANITE FALLS -- After scrapping plans to build a new addition to the courthouse, Yellow Medicine County found its answer to space needs by buying used. The county board of commissioners approved an agreement Tuesday to purchase the former Yellow Medicine County Bank on Eighth Avenue in Granite Falls.
OLIVIA -- Renville County's net levy would rise by 3.85 percent if a preliminary budget adopted Tuesday by the board of commissioners receives final approval. The county commissioners approved a preliminary levy of $12,727,151 for next year. The net levy reflects an increase of $472,726 as compared to 2012. More than one-half of the increase is attributed to a decision to set aside $250,000 toward an expanded road and bridge program being developed by the County Board. The county also needed to increase its levy due to an anticipated increase by $60,000 in mandates placed by the state on t
OLIVIA -- The Olivia Police Department and Renville County Sheriff's Office are seeking the public's help to apprehend the person or persons responsible for setting a fire Sunday in the downtown Olivia building that held the Renville County Food Shelf, Hair Connection, American Red Cross office and an apartment unit. No one was injured in the fire. The resident of the second-floor apartment was able to escape the building, according to the Olivia Police Department. The state fire marshal determined arson was the cause of the fire.
OLIVIA -- The public's help is being sought in apprehending the person or persons responsible for a fire that destroyed the contents of the Renville County Food Shelf and caused extensive smoke and heat damage to the Hair Connection, Red Cross office and an apartment unit in a downtown Olivia building on Sunday night. No one was injured, and the resident of the second floor apartment was able to escape the building unharmed, according to the Olivia Police Department. A passerby discovered the fire shortly before 8:35 p.m. The Olivia, Danube and Bird Island fire departments responded.
BUFFALO LAKE -- This is the day that trucks are expected to rumble out of the gate carrying the first ethanol produced at the former Minnesota Energy plant in Buffalo Lake since early 2010. Business partners Steve Walker and Patrick Riggs created Purified Renewable Energy LLC and raised the capital to acquire and upgrade the 1997-vintage facility that some feared might be scrapped.
OLIVIA -- Some of the earliest soybean and corn harvesting will likely take place along a three-mile stretch of Renville County Road 11. The Renville County Board of Commissioners learned Tuesday that the Court of Appeals has ruled against the low bidder for a project to rebuild the roadway from County Road 16 to Minnesota Highway 4. With the court's ruling issued, the County Board of Commissioners indicated that they intend to award the bid to the second low bidder on the project so that work can get under way yet this year.