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To pay or not to pay


Sun, Aug 27th, 2000
Posted in

Monday, August 28, 2000

The county board seemed to wade through one administrative dilemma after another as it met last Tuesday in its role as Fillmore County governments top managers. Still haunting the board in the execution of its duties is the ever-persistent mystery of how much money to pay county employees.

Salary issues topped the agenda as the board wrestled with a request from county auditor Angela Burrs to increase the salary of an account technician in the auditors office. The request was generated because Burrs just hired two new account technicians for her office, but at a pay step higher than the other account technicians step. The higher rate for the new employees was based on their experience, a justifiable action under the countys new Bjorklund pay plan, but the other account technicians in the auditors office have equal, if not greater, experience.

Fearing a domino-like effect from other employees, the board was reluctant to grant the increase, worrying that all account technicians in the county system would require a similar step increase.

Turning to county attorney Matt Opat for a solution proved to be even more discouraging. While Opat advised that the county could terminate the employment of the new hires in their probationary period, then re-hire them at a lower step, he also seemed to advise against that action as it could bring a lawsuit.

"I dont see how we can change an offer to an employee after acceptance," argued commissioner Robert Underbakke. "We shouldnt terminate during probation because it is our mistake."

Realizing that the discussion was holding up other agenda items, chairman Gary Peterson said that they would return to the matter later in the meeting.

Libraries
During committee reports, commissioner Helen Bicknese reported that the joint library board had met to discuss the 2001 funding request for the seven libraries in the county. With full funding for the libraries being at $148,638, and the countys budgeted amount at $130,000, the joint board is requesting a compromise amount of $137,000.

As commissioner Bicknese explained that the libraries are now using a median cost of circulation for all seven libraries in their budget considerations, commissioner Underbakke seemed unimpressed and even somewhat bothered by the funding request.

"They spend and spend and expect us to pick it up," exclaimed Underbakke as he made it known th .....
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West to the Oregon Coast

Sun, Aug 27th, 2000
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By Carol ThouinMonday, August 28, 2000

It started out like most family vacations. We packed up essential gear, made a quick trip to the bank for a healthy supply of travelers checks and performed a last-minute check of the house. The windows ..... 
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More on Tomatoes

Sun, Aug 27th, 2000
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Monday, August 28, 2000

Was last weeks article enough on tomatoes? Almost, but not yet. A few more diseases of tomato that you should be aware of are Bacterial Spot, Verticillium Wilt and Fusarium Wilt. Remember when all tomato tags of hybrid ..... 
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Not in my backyard

Sun, Aug 27th, 2000
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Monday, August 7, 2000

"Not in my backyard," read a recent "Journal" article about the proposed trail that would connect Spring Valley to the Root River Trail system. "Not in my backyard," say the neighbors of the Reiland dairy farm and the Mi ..... 
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Sun, Aug 27th, 2000
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"Please Dont Touch the Rattlesnakes!"By John LevellMonday, August 21, 2000

Rattlesnake! The single word most likely to elicit a response from those who live or play along the Root River State Trail, especially during these more temperate, ple ..... 
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Further tales of White Beaver

Sun, Aug 27th, 2000
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Monday, August 21, 2000

A few weeks ago I wrote a feature article in the Journal regarding the historical origins of Lanesboros Buffalo Bill Days, (It all started with White Beaver, July 31, 2000). Due to the usual constraints of space, the f ..... 
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Lord of the Dance

Sun, Aug 27th, 2000
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Monday, August 28, 2000

My wife told me that I had won first prize and was chosen to be her escort for her all-school reunion last weekend. I actually looked forward to the event, especially when it was her reunion and not mine. It was unlikel ..... 
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Survivors

Sun, Aug 27th, 2000
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Monday, August 28, 2000

This is a story about survivors.

No, it is not about the gameshow/psychodrama that was recently portrayed on CBS, where neurosis is a developmental skill highly valued by artificially created tribal groups.
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The Country Squire

Sun, Aug 27th, 2000
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It seems as though it was yesterday but it has been al-most ten years since I retired. As a matter of fact, I can barely remember what it was that I did for a living. I can remember how I well I prepared for my retirement. I bought books on the birds ..... 
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