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Thursday, February 11th, 2016
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Rushford approves amendment to lodging tax ordinance


By Kirsten Zoellner

Mon, Feb 8th, 2016
Posted in Rushford Government

A short January 25 Rushford council meeting hosted a public hearing and wrapped up a final decision on the fate of lodging tax dollars. The hearing was held to take public comment to a proposed amendment to the city’s ordinance on the funds. The issue has been in discussion for some time and a date was set for the hearing at the last council meeting.

“The purpose of the amendment is to clarify definitions and procedures for the administration of the tax,” stated city documents. Also included is language to formally designate the Rushford Peterson Valley Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors as the local convention or tourism bureau for the purpose of marketing and promoting tourism. Through state statute, 95% of lodging tax funds is to be spent by the acting tourism bureau, with the city retaining the remaining 5% to marketing a tourism purposes.

Another change put forth in the ordinance is the inclusion of city-owned campgrounds as a private source of the lodging tax. Previously, it had been limited to lodging establishments, public and private campgrounds, but excluding municipal campgrounds.

John and Eileen Loken, owner/operators of Loken’s Rushford Inn, have been vocal in supporting the use of the funds for marketing and tourism, but that the collection of funds should be fair across the board for any type of lodging. The Lokens also stressed a desire that the ordinance, collection, and usage of lodging tax dollars be reviewed annually.

Jennifer Hengel, Director for the Rushford Peterson Valley Chamber of Commerce, and Peggi Redalen, Chamber President, were on hand at the meeting and expressed no concern with the ordinance amendments. All items relating to the funds will be reviewed by the Chamber Board and city quarterly with a formal report annually. City Administrator Steve Sarvi cautioned the city not to include a review policy directly into the ordinance, noting the quarterly review stipulation will satisfy oversight.

“It’s more definitive. The intent of the lodging community meetings was to have a more open communication and improve the climate for tourism,” stated councilor Vern Bunke.

“Having the money in an establishment that is working hands on with it and bringing it back to us is a win-win,” added councilor Terri Benson. “It feels that’s the right place to go.”

The city has historically made contributions to lodging .....
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R-P rejects petition for school revote

By Kirsten Zoellner

Mon, Feb 8th, 2016
Posted in Rushford Education

The regular meeting of the Rushford-Peterson School Board, January 25, was packed with more than 50 district residents eager to see the result of a recent petition put forward. The petition, received by the district January 21, was signed by 140 vot ..... 
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In the service

Mon, Feb 1st, 2016
Posted in Rushford Social Scenes

Zachery D. Rislove U.S. Air Force Airman Zachery D. Rislove graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, San Antonio, Texas. The airman completed an intensive, eight-week program that included training in military d ..... 
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R-P community continues to support our school leaders

Mon, Feb 1st, 2016
Posted in Rushford Commentary

Our community has been blessed with a forward thinking superintendent, Mr. Ehler, and a school board that has brought us so far since 2007. Shortly prior to the 2007 flood, Mr. Chuck Ehler was hired by a school board who believed he was the person ..... 
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Letter about Here come the lawsuits...

Mon, Jan 25th, 2016
Posted in Rushford Letter to the Editor

Letter about Here come the lawsuits... To the Editor, This article would fail all Snopes fact checks. These are merely opinions by a group of anti new school supporters. School board minutes that you also publish will reflect the truths. So while ..... 
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New Rushford councilors take oath

By Kirsten Zoellner

Mon, Jan 18th, 2016
Posted in Rushford Government

The first meeting of the Rushford City Council for the year began with new councilors Terri Benson and Jim O’Donnell taking the oath of office. Also taking the oath was Mayor Chris Hallum, who is serving his third term. The new councilors dove rig ..... 
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Rushford Council approves 2016 levy and land sale

By Kirsten Zoellner

Mon, Jan 11th, 2016
Posted in Rushford Government

At the last meeting of 2015, a snowy January 28, the Rushford Council approved setting the final budget and property tax levy, taxes payable year 2016, at $790,000. After months of discussion on options for expense reductions and long-term strategic ..... 
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Marilyn J. Tarras

Tue, Jan 5th, 2016
Posted in Rushford Obituaries

Marilyn J. Tarras, 77, of Rushford, MN died on Sunday, January 3, 2016, at the Good Shepherd Lutheran Home in Rushford. Marilyn was born on March 30, 1938, in La Crosse, Wis. to Joseph and Charlotte (Ford) Lambert. She was raised in Win ..... 
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Douglas A.Heusinkveld

Thu, Dec 31st, 2015
Posted in Rushford Obituaries

Douglas Allen Heusinkveld, age 87, of Rushmore, Minn., formerly of San Jose, Calif., died Tuesday, December 15, 2015, on his 48th wedding anniversary, at the Sanford Worthington Medical Center. He was born March 24, 1928 to parents Reuben and Jessie ..... 
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