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Budget concerns drive Rushford Council decisions


Fri, Feb 14th, 2003
Posted in Features

Police Chief Sam Stensgard joined the Rushford City Council at their February 10 meeting to discuss the possibility of purchasing a new squad car. Stensgard had previously sent a memo to the council outlining his recommendation to purchase a second police car this year and then move to a three-year rotation for replacing squad cars. This would give the police two working squad cars in case of breakdowns or city events such as parades and celebrations. By waiting an additional year, the city could spend less per year on the vehicle with an increase, however, in insurance for the additional vehicle.

Chief Stensgard added, "Iím trying to make sure that if people call for the police, weíll be able to get there!"

Reacting to Chief Stensgard, the council chose to take some time to look at the capital budget and prioritize the cityís needs, delaying a decision on the squad car purchase. With a potential 42% cut in Local Government Aid (LGA) from the state, the council was reluctant to spend funds at this time on a new squad car. If the state does indeed reduce LGA by 42%, the city would need to cut $160,000 from its budget. Mayor T.S. Roberton emphasized once again that the city should consider this a permanent reduction in state aid and not just a short-term reduction.

In later discussion, the council chose to delay a decision on paying council members who attend committee meetings with city employees who are being paid to attend the meetings. Currently, the council members are not paid. If the council chose to change the policy, an ordinance would be needed as well as a public hearing. Mayor Roberton pointed out that, "this is a poor time to talk about paying, when here we are, crying poor."

Rushford Days Committee

Brad Woxland and Jenny Miller presented information to the council about next summerís Rushford Days celebration. A teen dance will once again be held at Creekside on the Thursday night of the celebration as well as another public dance on Friday night with music by Alibi, a popular band with a large local following. The council inquired about liquor license, insurance coverage, police coverage at the dances, and the possibility of a temporary road for tractor access to the tractor pull area in Creekside Park. Woxland informed the council that the committee had obtained guardrails free from Minowa during the North End Bridge demolition. Th .....
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Initiative Fund helps Rushford evaluate their community

Fri, Feb 14th, 2003
Posted in Features

The Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation (SMIF) presented their "site visit reflections" to the Rushford Community Thursday night at the Rushford-Peterson school theater to an audience of approximately twenty-four people. SMIF had visited Rushfor ..... 
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New administrator attends first Harmony council meeting

Fri, Feb 14th, 2003
Posted in Features

Due to bad weather on the evening of the Harmony City Councilís meeting, this reporter wasnít able to attend. However, a telephone interview with the cityís new Administrator was conducted.

Jerome Illg of Brooklyn Park, MN atten ..... 
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Lanesboro City Council Report

Fri, Feb 7th, 2003
Posted in Features

Editorís note: Due to inclement weather, the Journalís reporter was unable to attend Monday nightís meeting. The following article is based on an interview with City Administrator Barbara Hoyhtya.  By John Torgrimson&n ..... 
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Choosing to live in rural America

Fri, Feb 7th, 2003
Posted in Features

A December article in the New York Times was titled "Pastoral Poverty; The Seeds of Despair." The article compared the current "rural collapse" to the inner city collapse of a few decades ago, and focused on poor rural counties all over the United St ..... 
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Commissionersí Report

Fri, Feb 7th, 2003
Posted in Features

"With the Boardís approval, I will be applying for a state and federal Domestic Preparedness Equipment and Training Grant," said Larry Hunt, Emergency Services Director, as he addressed the Commissioners during their weekly meeting. The money would b ..... 
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Preston City Council Report

Fri, Feb 7th, 2003
Posted in Features

The Preston City Council met February 3, even though Monday presented the Preston area with the most inclement weather of the season. In what has been an unusually calm winter, the intense wind, blowing snow and falling temperatures brought everyone ..... 
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Benson rules in zoning case

Fri, Jan 31st, 2003
Posted in Features

Judge Robert Benson has denied a request by Fillmore County for a summary judgement in a zoning dispute between the county and Eli Slabaugh of rural Canton Township.

Former Fillmore County Attorney Matt Opat filed the civil act ..... 
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Commissionersí Report: Social Servicesí budget safe from state cuts for now

Fri, Jan 31st, 2003
Posted in Features

"I donít see much thatís going to effect the county," Tom Boyd, Fillmore County Social Services Director, told the county board on Tuesday. Boyd was commenting on the stateís potential budget cuts and the impact they may have on his department. This ..... 
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