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Kandiyohi County Board reorganizes for 2008

WILLMAR -- Richard Larson, of Willmar, will serve as chairman of the Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners in 2008. Dennis Peterson, of rural Spicer, will be vice chairman.

WILLMAR -- Richard Larson, of Willmar, will serve as chairman of the Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners in 2008. Dennis Peterson, of rural Spicer, will be vice chairman.

The Kandiyohi County Commissioners elected their officers Tuesday during the first meeting of the year.

Larson, however, was absent and Peterson conducted the business meeting, which included routine beginning-of-year appointments and contracts.

Included in the action was the appointment of two new members to the Planning Commission: Douglas Hanson and John Dean, both of Willmar. They will replace Harlow Olson, of rural Hawick, and Dennis Goehring, of rural Atwater, whose terms had expired.

The appointments were made as part of a plan initiated in 2006 to have representation on the seven-member Planning Commission from each of the five districts in the county. The membership also includes one at-large member and one Kandiyohi County Commissioner.

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In the past, Planning Commission members were appointed without regard to the district where they lived.

County Commissioner Richard Falk said the new system for appointing Planning Commission members will be more fair.

In other action:

n The Commissioners approved a 3 percent cost-of-living salary increase for the county's 168 non-union employees.

n The Commissioners approved a $3,500 grant to the Diamond Lake Wastewater Committee to conduct a survey of septic systems on Diamond Lake. The survey, which will be completed this spring and summer, will provide data on failing and functioning septic systems that can be used for future decisions about sanitary sewers systems on the lake.

n The West Central Tribune was named the official newspaper for the county. The Raymond-Prinsburg News was named the secondary newspaper.

Carolyn Lange is a features writer at the West Central Tribune. She can be reached at clange@wctrib.com or 320-894-9750
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