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Saturday, August 2nd, 2014
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Chatfield grills Mediacom representative


Fri, Aug 1st, 2014
Posted in Chatfield Government

Councilors made it clear at the Chatfield City Council’s July 28 meeting that Mediacom customers in Chatfield were displeased with the recent channel changes made by the company. Councilors Paul Novotny and Dave Frank were absent.

Lee Grassley, Senior Manager, Government Relations for Mediacom Communications, drove up from Cedar Rapids to sit on the hot seat before the council. At the council’s June 23 meeting, after councilors and city staff had been bombarded with e-mails and phone calls from angry residents that were dissatisfied with the channel changes, the council passed a resolution requesting that Mediacom reinstate WCCO-4, KSTP-5, and WLAX-25. The resolution argued that the loss of these channels cut connections with Minneapolis, St. Paul, and reduced connections with La Crosse. Grassley noted that about 40 percent of Chatfield households subscribe to Mediacom.

Grassley insisted that legal technicalities were involved and that the changes have been in the plans for a couple of years. Mediacom decided to do the channel realignment all at once in mid June. He suggested that the city may not be where it should be technologically.

Grassley went into some detail about how things have changed since the 1950s when geographic lines were drawn at the recommendation of the Nielsen ratings. Each town used to have its own head end, where the signal originated. The company is currently working on more fiber and extended networks to improve band width.

Since 2007 the company has had to pay more for retransmission consent fees when service went to digital from analog. Grassley maintained these retransmission fees for video are really killing us. During analog transmission, the rules were you could get any channel you could pull in with an antenna. He claimed they couldn’t legally provide channels like WCCO today unless the broadcaster filed an affidavit with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that proves a channel is significantly viewed.

Councilor Mike Urban asked directly if they cannot legally provide these channels. Grassley said they can’t.

Mayor Russ Smith said he had no idea if a competitor would come, recognizing that a competitor would have to want to come, adding Mediacom is what we have. Grassley said we all have to follow the same rules and conform to federal law.

Councilor Ken Jacobson said he subscribes to Mediacom and will continue .....
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Spring Valley makes an offer for ambulance director

Fri, Aug 1st, 2014
Posted in Spring Valley Government

The Spring Valley City Council is in the process of hiring a new ambulance director. Since Jim Cooper announced in April that he was going to retire on August 15 the council has been working on finding a replacement. After the advertising phase for ..... 
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Rushford considers managed hunting within city limits

By Kirsten Zoellner

Fri, Aug 1st, 2014
Posted in Rushford Government

The issue of deer population control in Rushford has once again been brought to the forefront of council discussions. The council had reviewed options in 2012 and 2013 due to the damage inflicted on vegetation and hazards to traffic. In 2013, the co ..... 
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Preston wraps up details for North Industrial Park

Fri, Jul 25th, 2014
Posted in Preston Government

The Preston City Council worked through an unusually long agenda at their July 21 meeting. Councilman David Harrison was absent. A public hearing was held related to the proposed utility improvements for the North Industrial Park. Brett Grabau, St ..... 
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County to consider local option sales tax

Fri, Jul 25th, 2014
Posted in All Government

County Engineer Ron Gregg reviewed an eight-year capital improvement plan for county roads at the board’s July 22 meeting. The plan has to be in place, detailing specific improvement projects, before funds can be generated by a Local Option Sales ..... 
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Help Our Neighbors/tourism center

Fri, Jul 18th, 2014
Posted in Chatfield Government

At the July 14 Chatfield City Council meeting a proposal from Help Our Neighbors (HON) to share space at the Tourism Center was approved. This non-profit organization was established in 2012 to help senior citizens stay in their homes. HON will s ..... 
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Rushford EDA revamps forbearance terms

By Kirsten Zoellner

Fri, Jul 18th, 2014
Posted in Rushford Government

There’s no denying that the Economic Development Authority’s revolving loan fund has done great things for Rushford’s economic growth. At least two past audits have garnered praise for its efforts. Still, there is room for improvement, as note ..... 
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Whalan City Council talks town improvements and house demolition

Fri, Jul 18th, 2014
Posted in Whalan Government

At the regular monthly meeting of the Whalan City Council that took place on Monday, July 14, a number of items were discussed and actions were approved. Present at the meeting were Mayor Larry Johnson, Everett Johnson, Jim Gustavson, David Rahn, Ma ..... 
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Rep. Davids named “Legislator of Distinction”

Fri, Jul 18th, 2014
Posted in All Government

By Jason Wenisch ST. PAUL – The League of Minnesota Cities has honored State Representative Greg Davids (R-Preston) with its 2014 “Legislator of Distinction” award. The League annually recognizes lawmakers who display leadership in supporting ..... 
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