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Rushford offers option for MPCA issue


By Kirsten Zoellner

Fri, Apr 26th, 2013
Posted in Rushford Agriculture

By Kirsten Zoellner

The 814 North Mill Street property of Jon Dammen has been on Rushford’s radar for a number of years. A remaining private septic system within the city limits, it has been racking up fines from Minnesota Pollution Control Agency since the system was declared failing by the county in the fall of 2010.

In 2009, when the city was in the midst of its Improvement Project, a plan to extend utility lines from Pine Meadows North further north to serve two residential properties and three potential future residential properties was in the works. By the fall of 2010, the city squared away issues with land agreements, but found difficulty in working out agreements to cross Mike Dammen’s land. That same fall, the county investigated Jon Dammen’s septic and declared it unrepairable.

Bids were taken by the city in August 2011 to finish installing the service lines to the north. A February 2012 meeting between the county, state, city, and the Dammens was held to discuss the issue again. Since that time, the city has been trying to hammer out agreements with both Jon and Mike Dammen for the services.

Now, the city is considering an option that would allow Dammen to have a holding tank installed for three to five years until an agreement can be reached. “There are things to iron out and the city may want to consider interim options with intention for an extension,” noted city Administrator Steve Sarvi. “We’ve studied this thing every which way to Sunday. For MPCA and the county, the important thing is that the failure stops. This isn’t a long-term solution. I would be comfortable with this option.”

“The only other option is a private system, but that goes against the city ordinance [prohibiting private systems]. I would prefer to have a private system, but I know the council wants otherwise,” acknowledged Dammen.

According to Sarvi, while MCPA and the county would prefer the problem be permanently remedied sooner, they’re willing to wait for the city to extend the line. “The city council wants the issue resolved from a pollution stand point,” added Sarvi, echoing the main concern. He indicated that the city will make a case for Dammen to have the fines lowered. The city will also consider the possibility of allowing the holding tank to be pumped and the contents dumped at the wastewater treatment plant to assist Dammen further.

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Guest Commentary: Balance sheet approach to frac sand mining decisions

Fri, Apr 26th, 2013
Posted in Rushford Commentary

By Bryan Van Gorp, Rushford, MN Let’s look at the economic, social, and environmental pros and cons to frac sand mining in SE Mn. Economic impact Dr. Steven Deller an economist from U of W who studied sand mining in Western Wisconsin says ther ..... 
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HBC launches new agenda in Bluff Country

Fri, Apr 26th, 2013
Posted in Rushford Arts & Culture

Rushford, MN - “SE MN Historic Bluff Country (“HBC”) will be different in 2013,” says its new Board President, Valencia Gaddis, a web designer and owner of SonSations Business Services in Rushford. “We can’t attract visitors today the sa ..... 
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Industrial Craft Expo will showcase “Made in Bluff Country” products

Fri, Apr 26th, 2013
Posted in Rushford Arts & Culture

Rushford, Minn. - “It’s time we show off the quality products and incredible innovation that comes out of this amazing Bluff Country region,” remarked Val Gaddis, Chairman of SE MN Historic Bluff Country, Inc.(“HBC”), a non-profit regional ..... 
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Nancy Dubbs-Hughes

Fri, Apr 26th, 2013
Posted in Rushford Obituaries

Nancy Joann Dubbs-Hughes, 78, was taken by the angels on April 4, 2013, after a courageous battle with lung cancer. Nancy was born on March 8, 1935, to Wallace and Gladys (Gilbertson) Dubbs in Rushford, Minn. Nancy lived an incredibly rich li ..... 
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Rushford-Peterson Chapter of the National Honor Society

Fri, Apr 26th, 2013
Posted in Rushford Education

On Wednesday April 17th the Rushford-Peterson Chapter of the National Honor Society held its annual induction ceremony. The National Honor Society recognizes those students that have followed our school’s motto of “Always Our Best” in the area ..... 
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R-P speech finalists

Fri, Apr 19th, 2013
Posted in Rushford Education

Congratulations to the speech coaches and participants on a job well done at Sections. They have done a fine job of representing R-P Schools! Please join me in congratulating the following students on their accomplishment of advancing to the state c ..... 
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R-P board hits at board member letter

By Kirsten Zoellner

Fri, Apr 19th, 2013
Posted in Rushford Education

By Kirsten Zoellner A March 27 open letter to a local news publication by R-P board member Taylor Peterson prompted the need for comments by nearly all board members at the April 15 regular meeting. A long-time advocate for cost savings in the dist ..... 
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One for the birds

By Kirsten Zoellner

Fri, Apr 12th, 2013
Posted in Rushford Features

For reasons that seem unfathomable, feeders have been made for squirrels. Ask any avid birder and they’ll tell you that there’s always one pesky squirrel, if not a rebel gang, that makes off with a cheek full of prime bird seed, leaving the poor ..... 
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