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Change of venue


Sun, Jul 30th, 2000
Posted in

By John TorgrimsonMonday, July 31, 2000

The Fillmore County board is now meeting where the zoning office used to be.

The change of venue occurred after commissioner Donald Boyum complained that the U-shaped arrangement at the former commissioner's meeting room left some board members' backs to the audience. Board chairman Gary Peterson suggested the switch to the vacant zoning office.

For those of you who were unable to attend last Tuesday's commissioner meeting, the new room looks like it was built in 1957, which it was. It has brown-checkered tile flooring and white walls. A cabinet on the south wall is stained blond, a style that was popular back in the 50's. The ceiling is yellowed with age and the florescent lighting gives everything a goldish patina. The only thing on the wall is a big round clock.

The room has some history. Apart from all the zoning permits that have been issued; last March, Candace Rasmussen, the attorney for convicted child-murderer Howey Kramer met the media in the room after her client was found guilty of second degree murder. She said that her client maintained his innocence and that the whole thing was a terrible tragedy. The prosecutor, William Klumpp, on the other hand, couldn't quite understand why Howey didn't get murder one. After a six week trial, it made for high drama. But, I digress.

The folding tables and green padded chairs in the room look haphazard, as if they've been hauled out of deep storage. The tables, in particular, could use some resurfacing, as patches of pressed-wood particle board are showing through.

The commissioners, as they came into the room, looked confused.

"Is this the official door?" Commissioner Duane Bakke inquired, as he tiptoed over to the chair by his nametag.

There are two doors to the room, which must remain open to comply with open meeting laws. Both doors face south, which is a big time no-no in the Feng Shui world (Chinese spiritual energy), because the big bad dragons that spawn in the hallway get trapped in the room and have to pass over the commissioner table to get out the other door.

People walked up and down the hall during the meeting and you could hear the click, click, click of their heels. Next door, the heating and cooling system belched and hummed.

The audience, if there had been one, sits on folding chairs that have been hand painted a cream color. All in all, the room had a third-world fee .....
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