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Social Service programs reviewed


Fri, Mar 7th, 2008
Posted in Government

PRESTON - The history, operation and goals of the Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP) and the Diversionary Work Program (DWP) were detailed at the March 4 county board meeting. Gail Bunge, Financial Assistance Supervisor, explained that the MFIP program began statewide in 1998. This program is designed to help families with children. The program provides for child care help and employment services. It was modeled off the old Aid to Families with Dependent Children. Most families in the MFIP program also qualify for Medical Assistance. The goal of the program is to help families become self-sufficient. "Adult caregivers are expected to be engaged in paid employment, employment-related job seeking, or skill training for 30 plus hours per week."

Bunge added that the MFIP program has a 60 month time limit. Fillmore County typically has about 65 cases with participation either in the MFIP or the DWP. Social Service Director Thomas Boyd related that 70% of families are off the MFIP program within 3 years. The number of families participating in the program has decreased more than 30% since 1994. Boyd stressed that people want to work. He expects that with the economic down turn there will be an uptick in cases. The average participating family consists of three people, one adult and two children. Families may also receive food support which averages $88 per person per month.

The Diversionary Work Program is a four month program designed specifically to help families find employment immediately rather than to go to welfare. This program has been available since 2004. The program can provide for "basic housing costs, personal needs allowance, and child care assistance."

Wanda Jensen, Welfare Reform Programs Coordinator for Workforce Development, Inc., discussed the assessment interview when a parent comes in to apply for help. She acknowledged that people are apprehensive and have pride issues. Jensen determines education level, enrolls people in classes to get a GED if needed, provides work career counseling, career planning, practice in filling out applications and interviewing, and determines computer literacy.

Commissioner Duane Bakke asked about those people who are not trainable. Bunge said that those limitations would be part of the initial assessment. If someone is determined to be disabled and unable to work, then the possibility of Social Security would be considered. Jensen added that if a doctor says that an indi .....
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Rushford City council: Joint session looks at flood loans

Fri, Mar 7th, 2008
Posted in Government

RUSHFORD - In a special joint-session of the Rushford City council and EDA on Monday, March 3, members presented tailored specific disaster loan policies to meet special-case needs, but largely decided to stick with program guidelines that have resu ..... 
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Lanesboro Council discusses need for hazardous mitigation plan

Fri, Mar 7th, 2008
Posted in Government

Lanesboro's City Administrator Bobbie Vickerman recently attended a Hazardous Mitigation meeting, and spoke to the City Council about it during their regular meeting on March 3. Information has been acquired from every city in Fillmore County regard ..... 
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Rushford council okays $1 million in loans to non-flood businesses

Fri, Feb 29th, 2008
Posted in Government

RUSHFORD - Oh, the headlines. Nobody signed up to be front-page-news when the Feds-and-the-State tipped a dump truck full of disaster recovery funds on Rushford. Like-it-or-not, that money belongs to the taxpayers, the People. And exactly how the Pe ..... 
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Fillmore County joins Southeast Region Joint Power Agreement for communications

Fri, Feb 29th, 2008
Posted in Government

PRESTON - Goodhue County Deputy Sheriff Scott McNurlin and consultant Tom Hannon brought the Fillmore County Board up to speed on the formation of the Southeast Minnesota Regional Radio Board at the February 26 county board meeting. At this time ele ..... 
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Spring Valley City Council Report: Street project specs approved

Fri, Feb 29th, 2008
Posted in Government

The Spring Valley City Council met in regular session and passed a resolution Accepting Plans & Specifications and authorized bids on the Hudson Street project scheduled for this year. The estimates came out lower than originally calculated, accordi ..... 
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Preston to spruce up council chambers

Fri, Feb 22nd, 2008
Posted in Government

City Administrator Joe Hoffman received the go ahead from the Preston City Council at their February 19 meeting to do some research on costs and ideas for remodeling the city council chambers. Councilman David Harrison was absent.

Hoffman e ..... 
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Lanesboro adopts Assessment Policy

Fri, Feb 22nd, 2008
Posted in Government

LANESBORO - The Lanesboro City Council adopted the revised Assessment Policy following a public hearing at its Tuesday, February 19 meeting. The meeting was a joint meeting of the council and the Lanesboro Public Utility Commission. Vince Jeannette ..... 
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Hypersonic still on hold

Fri, Feb 22nd, 2008
Posted in Government

RUSHFORD - It was ironic really, walking over to last Wednesday evening's February 20 special session of the Rushford City council under a clear sky, temperatures below 10-below, the snow pack blue as the Earth from space, a shadow drifted across th ..... 
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