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County board questions land owner cost of getting into Rural Preserve Program


Fri, Apr 16th, 2010
Posted in Government

County Assessor Cindy Blagsvedt updated the Fillmore County Commissioners on the four steps landowners need to follow to apply for the Rural Preserve Program at the April 13 meeting. Blagsvedt said the purpose of the program is to improve or maintain existing land cover. Landowners who are currently enrolled in Green Acres for their nonproductive land, which includes woods and waste pasture (not used for grazing), have until August 16, 2010, to get the process going by informing the Assessor's office of their intention to put their nonproductive land into the Rural Preserve. Landowners have until May 1, 2013, to complete the requirements for enrollment which will not require paying back deferred taxes.

Landowners can enroll eligible nonproductive land that is on their Ag homestead, which is not currently in Green Acres, for any future year prior to May 1 to defer taxes for the next year.

It is estimated that 290 landowners in Fillmore County will choose to go into Rural Preserve for their nonproductive land. Because of the work required in the Assessor's office to start the process, it is recommended that landowners call ahead for an appointment.

The process to get into the program has some costs associated with the process including $5 per aerial map, an expected $250 or more for a required conservation plan, and $46 to record the covenant. Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) staff will refer landowners to certified planners to write a conservation plan. The County Recorder will record the covenant which includes the legal description, the map and the plan.

Chairman Duane Bakke was outraged by the charge to produce a conservation plan, saying $250 was ridiculous. SWCD has said that they do not have enough staff to write the plans in their office. Bakke intends to check with Rep. Greg Davids about the intention of the legislature and whether they were aware of the cost, especially of producing a conservation plan, to enroll into the program. He suggested the costs will cause some landowners to pass on the program. Commissioner Randy Dahl was concerned about the possibility the legislature will change the laws again before 2013.

Future Highway Projects and Funding Limitations

Highway Engineer John Grindeland and Tom Miles discussed plans for this year's projects and those over the next nine years. Next week the commissioners will go on their annual tour of the county roads. State aid money is insuffi .....
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Setbacks for large wind energy conversion system

Fri, Apr 16th, 2010
Posted in Government

The Fillmore County Planning Commission had an informal discussion at their April 15 meeting of what should be the appropriate setback for a large wind conversion turbine from a dwelling. The current ordinance requires a 750 foot setback. Zoning Adm ..... 
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Chatfield hopes to finally resolve wastewater plant headaches

Fri, Apr 16th, 2010
Posted in Government

The Chatfield City Council approved the hiring of Gopher Septic to clean biosolids from three of its reed beds at their April 12 meeting. Superintendent Darryl Haner recommended using Gopher Septic because of their experience and their ability to wo ..... 
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Rushford and Rushford Village hold joint city meeting

Fri, Apr 16th, 2010
Posted in Government

Several issues have plagued the relationship between Rushford and the city of Rushford Village for some time. With staff, engineers, and lawyers present, the two cities recently held a combined meeting to attempt to move towards resolution of at lea ..... 
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Rushford Council discusses costs

Fri, Apr 16th, 2010
Posted in Government

In a fairly cut and dry meeting, the council met Monday, April 12th, and combed through areas of city functions which they are hoping to fine tune financially. First up on the agenda was the topic of the municipal liquor store. It has been an item o ..... 
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Lanesboro's new construction

Fri, Apr 16th, 2010
Posted in Government

There was a Board of Equalization hearing before the regular Lanesboro City Council meeting on April 12. County Assessor Ron Vikre was present to answer any questions or concerns people had about their property values.

Vikre explained they we ..... 
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Spring Valley's board of review

Fri, Apr 16th, 2010
Posted in Government

The Spring Valley City Council met on Monday night and opened the Board of Review at 5:30. The Board of Review gives property owners an opportunity to appear and voice their pleasure/displeasure with their property evaluations. As usual, the crowd w ..... 
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County fears another cost shift

Fri, Apr 9th, 2010
Posted in Government

Once again Fillmore County Commissioners expressed concern over rumored legislative cost shifts which would put added pressure on county property taxes. Tom Boyd, Community Services, at the board's April 6 meeting explained that if the cost shift pa ..... 
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Rushford Village entertains questions on prospective campground

Fri, Apr 9th, 2010
Posted in Government

The March 23, 2010, regular meeting was called to order by Mayor Gordon Johnson at 7:00 p.m. Council members present: Dennis Overland, Roger Ekern, Elizabeth Atkinson, Dale Schwanke. Also present: Zoning Administrator Howard Otis, Attorney Thomas Ma ..... 
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