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Agreement reached on engineer fee cap


Fri, Mar 18th, 2005
Posted in Features

HARMONY After an hour of negotiations, between engineers involved in the Lutes-Scrabeck housing development, an agreement was reached that would place a cap on city engineer inspection fees paid for by the developer of the project. A not to exceed $5,000 cap was agreed to by the developers and the city council, thus ending the last road block for the project to go forward.

The discussions took place at a special city council meeting on Tuesday, March 15. The tax abatement project now goes to the Fillmore County Board for final approval, expected to come when the county board meets on March 22.

The developers, Jim Lutes and Dwight Scrabeck, are planning on building a subdivision that will consist of 14 lots. The estimated costs of public improvements is $300,000, of which the city of Harmony will pay half. The city, county and developers have agreed to use a tax abatement plan, known as pay as you go, where the developers would be reimbursed as the lots are developed and the houses are built.

The engineer inspections are necessary to check on the work of contractors and the materials used in creating streets, laying sewer and other utilities, to ensure that the work meets project specifications.

Two weeks ago the developers voiced their concerns about a clause in the development agreement that would give the citys engineer an open checkbook on construction inspection fees. The developers asked that there be itemized estimates, with a not to exceed cap of $2,000.

On Tuesday, the developers worst fears were realized when the citys engineer, Mike Lynch of Bonestroo & Associates, delivered inspection estimates totalling $12,000 for 128 hours of work. This set off a tit for tat exchange between Lynch and Mike Welch, of GGG Engineering, engineers for the developers.

Welch argued that many of the inspections will be handled by GGG as provided by their agreement with the developer and that it was not necessary to have a second engineer at the site on a daily basis.

Lynch countered that it is difficult to have two masters.

[GGG] work for the developers. They are looking at getting the biggest value for the lowest cost. That may not be what the city wants, Lynch said.

Welch challenged Lynchs numbers that the normal inspection rate of 4% of construction costs .....
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L.A. Stories

Fri, Mar 18th, 2005
Posted in Features

The great thing about going to L.A. for a few days is that you dont have to hassle with carrying your passport or going through customs, which doesnt necessarily mean you are not entering another kind of country.

Ive always ..... 
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Rushford City Council Report

Fri, Mar 18th, 2005
Posted in Features

Im confident I can get you out of the contract, declared Attorney Terry Chiglo to the Rushford City Council at their meeting March 14. Chiglo informed the council the generator contract with Ziegler had seven deficiencies within it that could enab ..... 
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Zoning body okays gas permit, approves hog feedlot

Fri, Mar 18th, 2005
Posted in Features

Back in February, the Fillmore County Planning & Zoning Commission tabled any action on an application for a conditional use permit by Northern Natural Gas Company (NNG) to add an additional compressor at their facility in Jordan Township because the ..... 
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Lanesboro School Board: Art mural and rec center dominates meeting

Fri, Mar 18th, 2005
Posted in Features

Two very unconventional community projects dominated discussion at the Lanesboro School Board meeting. There were further updates on the proposed Recreation/Youth Center, but discussion started off with a proposal by Lanesboros arts community.[Read the Rest]

The Irish Minstrels sing their way around Ireland

Fri, Mar 11th, 2005
Posted in Features

Editors note: Last September the Irish Minstrels, a traditional Irish music group from Spring Valley, Minnesota, toured Ireland, singing their way from town to town. Theres no better way to meet the locals than by playing Irish music in a pub in th ..... 
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A touch of Spring at Cumberland Island

Fri, Mar 11th, 2005
Posted in Features

Cumberland Island located off the southwest corner of Georgia is a welcome getaway for a couple of winter-weary nature enthusiasts down from Minnesota. For four days in the middle of February what better place to be than the already spring like envir ..... 
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Mausts and Heartland throw in the towel

Fri, Mar 11th, 2005
Posted in Features

Shortly before the Preston City Council was to meet on Monday, March 7, an unsigned letter from Bob and Elaine Maust was delivered to the city office stating that the Heartland Energy & Recycling project, as has been presented, is no longer under co ..... 
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County Boad approves partnership with MnDOT

Fri, Mar 11th, 2005
Posted in Features

County Engineer John Grindeland briefed the county board at their Tuesday meeting about an agreement between the state and county, where local units of government to perform work on behalf of MnDot.

On occasions when the stat ..... 
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