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County Board supports conservation efforts on Earth Day


Fri, Apr 25th, 2008
Posted in Government

Kevin Kuehner and Donna Rasmussen, Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD), detailed projects the district is working with and requested the Fillmore County board's support at their April 22 meeting. As County Coordinator Karen Brown acknowledged, the discussion was timely, as it was Earth Day.

The board gave their support to a Buffer Initiative to encourage farmers "to plant vegetated filter strips/buffers on farmland around and along water resources including streams, rivers, sinkholes and wetlands."

Kuehner explained that the initiative is part of the Continuous Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) program. Financial assistance will be available for qualifying cropland owners to install the filter strips and current CRP payments in the county now run from $133 to $200 per acre for a 10 to 15 year contract. The county has about 629 total miles of Department of Natural Resources (DNR) protected water ways. He suggested that about 32% of these would benefit from a vegetative buffer. About 1700 acres could be taken out of production.

A letter will be sent out to farmers describing the program, highlighting the areas eligible, and encouraging their participation signed and supported by both the County Board and the Fillmore County SWCD.

Commissioner Marc Prestby questioned the dollars per acre offered, if farmers could make more with the current value of row crops. Commissioner Duane Bakke countered that $133 per acre may be adequate when the soil quality is considered, when it may not be able to support good yields. Kuehner said that those dollar values based on types of soil could be adjusted with the next farm bill. He admitted that as many as 3,000 to 4,000 acres will be coming out of CRP in the next few years. Kuehner hopes that the smaller scale buffer program can compete with higher crop values.

Bakke questioned the recommendation for filter strips being 30 feet to 120 feet wide. He noted that the county ordinance requires a 50 foot width. Kuehner agreed it would be cleaner to suggest at least a 50 foot buffer strip.

Kuehner informed the board that as of three weeks ago, the soil survey is certified and to be posted on the website. Fillmore and Wabasha Counties were the last to complete the update with the last update completed in 1956.

Root River Study

The SWCD is conducting a three year study on the Root River as to its turbidity total maximum daily load (TMDL). Kuehner referred to t .....
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County okays Hillside Estates tax abatement

Fri, Apr 18th, 2008
Posted in Government

PRESTON - On April 15 the Fillmore County Board unanimously adopted a resolution approving a property tax abatement for infrastructure improvements for Hillside Estates in the city of Chatfield. Hilltop Estates includes the new elementary school to ..... 
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DEED letter adds more confusion to flood loan process

Fri, Apr 18th, 2008
Posted in Government

RUSHFORD - It was with a grim resignation that about three dozen people gathered at city hall in the council chambers for another regular meeting of the Rushford City Council April 14 at 6:30 p.m..

Some have chosen to be spectators, others h ..... 
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Spring Valley residents discuss property taxes

Fri, Apr 18th, 2008
Posted in Government

What's my property worth? The Board of Appeals and Equalization is an annual event in City and County Government to give property owners an opportunity to ask questions concerning their tax statements. At the Spring Valley City Council meeting on Mo ..... 
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Lanesboro council holds Board of Equalization hearing

Fri, Apr 18th, 2008
Posted in Government

A few residents of Lanesboro came before the council at their regular meeting on April 14 to voice some concerns during the Board of Equalization Public Hearing. Ron Vikre of the County Assessor's office was present to answer questions about propert ..... 
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County Board debates flood plain restrictions

Fri, Apr 11th, 2008
Posted in Government

PRESTON - Zoning Administrator Norman Craig came prepared with copies of the current ordinance on flood plains at the April 8 meeting of the Board of Commissioners. Confusion as to what is allowed to be built in a flood plain was the issue. Craig ex ..... 
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Preston Council looks at 2008 street projects

Fri, Apr 11th, 2008
Posted in Government

Bill Cox, Public Works, presented maps and descriptions of three suggested projects to Preston City council members at their April 7 meeting. Work in the downtown area could be wrapped up with a mill and overlay of portions of St. Anthony and Mill S ..... 
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Harmony residents raise questions about property tax assessments

Fri, Apr 11th, 2008
Posted in Government

Citizens of Harmony came to the City Council meeting on April 8 to discuss their property taxes and the assessments made on their homes recently. Fred Horihan and Cindy Blagsvadt from the Fillmore County Assessor's Office were there to answer any qu ..... 
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Lanesboro Council discusses capital improvement projects

Fri, Apr 11th, 2008
Posted in Government

Lanesboro City Council members got together for a special meeting on April 7 to discuss the capital improvement projects and financing. They were also able to hear about some new options and lower costs from Mike Bubany of David Drown and Associates ..... 
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