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Flood issues preoccupy Rushford and city council


Fri, Oct 12th, 2007
Posted in Government

RUSHFORD - The brittle rubble of a flood-wrecked Rushford home swings through midair in the steel maw of a powerful machine then drops into a Red Box container at the curb sending a wind-pushed plume of blue dust across the street into windowless houses waiting to be crushed and hauled to the landfill. As of last week, some 30-demolition permits have been filed at City Hall.

An Irregular Fall Season

Scores of buildings have already been repaired, basements constructed under them while gutted interiors, propped-up on temporary columns, dried-out. Truckloads of new furnaces and all the shiny ductwork, new hot water heaters, new washers-and-dryers have been installed. New wiring, new insulation, new siding. While FEMA trailers occupy some emptied lots, in others sit half-houses, middles removed, wings clipped, old original structures dismantled to leave more recent additions attached to nothing, open to rain and cold wind for everyone who drives by to examine. Uncounted others remain more-or-less untouched, unopened, unwanted for whatever reason since the mid-August flood left the former inhabitants homeless.

Abandoned homes? "We don't know for sure the number," said Kathy Zacher, Rushford City Clerk. "We don't know for sure if people who've relocated will come back. But it looks like there are some houses that haven't had any work done on them. Clearly, to walk away like that, those owners have issues. The long-term flood recovery team and the Red Cross will identify and try to work with them," she said.

The remarkable effort so far to repair neighborhoods and businesses, along with rebooting all the software of community, is balanced precariously against the second-and-third-wind it will take Rushford to go the distance to full recovery.

Certainty and uncertainty compete to frustrate the most unflappable. FEMA, SBA, State, County and City regulations you can count on to erode momentum and dull pencils. Legal frameworks designed to ensure fairness and minimize fraud may-or-may-not guarantee financing adequate to rebuild your home or certify that your temporary business quarters comply with the State building code.

The tide of volunteers has ebbed. Meals at Montini Hall ended two-weeks-ago. So has "free" curbside collection of flood-debris. FEMA is paying for the initial clean-up. The mountain of mess near the water tower has been whittled down to nothing and the MPCA declared the site clean and closed. Recyclin .....
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Spring Valley City Council Report: Council approves contract with Waste Management

Fri, Oct 12th, 2007
Posted in Government

SPRING VALLEY - The Spring Valley City Council met Monday night, October 8 and gave final approval to the contract with Waste Management. Waste Management had included an extra day of service for an event and fuel adjustment cost to the document at ..... 
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Harmony Council selects contractor for Community Center project

Fri, Oct 12th, 2007
Posted in Government

Members of the Harmony City Council made a decision on who would be doing the construction work at the community center this fall at their October 9 meeting. They received a total of six bids, and Mayor David Kingsley stated he was happy with them. ..... 
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County approves tax abatements for flood damage properties

Fri, Oct 12th, 2007
Posted in Government

PRESTON - Assessor Robert Pickett presented the board with a very long list of properties in Fillmore County that should qualify for a tax abatement for the second half of 2007 at their October 9 meeting. These properties will have to have at least ..... 
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Preston proceeds with eminent domain for trail

Fri, Oct 5th, 2007
Posted in Government

PRESTON - Preston City Council members unanimously approved a resolution at their October 2 meeting appointing Preston Attorney David Joerg as special counsel to use eminent domain proceedings to acquire two holdout properties for the Preston-Forest ..... 
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EDA proposal tweaked for DEED acceptance

Fri, Oct 5th, 2007
Posted in Government

RUSHFORD - "As to the question, 'is the business community satisfied with this (proposal)?', I think I can answer that-No!" said Rushford mayor Les Ladewig in the special meeting of the city council last Tuesday, Oct. 2.

Ladewig continued, " ..... 
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County Board approves application procedure for demolition and debris removal

Fri, Oct 5th, 2007
Posted in Government

Fillmore County flood victims that need to have their condemned primary residence demolished and removed can apply for grant money from the state. The board approved the application form and criteria and the process at their October 2 meeting.
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Lanesboro City Council Report: Public hearing to vacate Southern Hills easement set

Fri, Oct 5th, 2007
Posted in Government

LANESBORO - Developer Gary Grebin came before the Lanesboro City Council at their Monday, October 1, meeting to discuss the possibility of re-platting Lots 9 and 10 of the Southern Hills development, on the backside of Maple Drive. The matter was re ..... 
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Rushford council sorts out aid issues

Fri, Sep 28th, 2007
Posted in Government

By Bonnie Prinsen & Tom Driscoll

RUSHFORD - "We've heard from so many entities about our unique unity as a community," said Council member Nancy Benson at the regular meeting of the Rushford City Council last Monday, Sept. 24. "Money should n ..... 
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