Government

• Lawmakers hear from farmers, steel  industry, Amtrak, power companies about delays on lines by Jim Boyle Editor The topic of train congestion pulled into the Minnesota Capitol on Tuesday. Lawmakers, including Sen. Mary Kiffmeyer, R-Big Lake, sat through a 4 1/2-hour joint Minnesota House and Senate hearing Sept. 30 on Minnesota’s rail system, railroad [...]

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by Jeff Hage ECM Publishers Not long after Steve Karel came to the Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge two years ago as its new manager, he got a visit from Sue Hix, president of the Friends of Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge. That was the first time Karel heard about a need for a new education building [...]

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• Reasons (excuses) no longer needed to send in an absentee ballot for election by Nathan Sommer Murphy News Absentee voting has officially opened across the state for the Nov. 4 general election, and for the first time, registered voters are not required to provide a reason for voting early. According to Minnesota Secretary of State [...]

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by Debbie Griffin Contributing Writer The Otsego City Council approved its preliminary 2015 budget at the Sept. 22 meeting after acknowledging residential property taxes will go down as a result of higher-than-expected growth. The council recognized the city’s sound management practices and commitment to keeping any levy increase lower than 4 percent. “That means property [...]

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• If chosen, MinnMed would have plans for  greenhouse operation by Debbie Griffin Contributing Writer The Sept. 22 Otsego City Council meeting included a presentation about the plans of Minnesota Medical Solutions, LLC, to apply for one of two medical-cannabis cultivation licenses the state will issue and if successful, to locate the growing facility in Otsego. [...]

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The city of Elk River hosted an open house on the Houlton Farm acquisition Wednesday at City Hall. The Trust for Public Land is in the process of buying the 335-acre farm for a conservation area open to public hunting and fishing. The farm is located along the Mississippi and Elk rivers, near the Orono [...]

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An appeal has prompted a Sept. 22 court date for the Pinewood Golf Course lawsuit to be delayed. At issue is the city of Elk River’s argument that the city has official immunity from a claim for damages by Paul and Pamela Krause, according to City Administrator Cal Portner. The Krauses sold Pinewood Golf Course [...]

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by Joni Astrup Associate Editor A future roundabout proposed in eastern Elk River is drawing opposition from local trucking companies, and the city is reconsidering the matter. The roundabout is planned at the intersection of 171st Avenue and Twin Lakes Road, located between Highway 10 and the railroad tracks just south of the Northstar train [...]

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The Elk River City Council has set a maximum property tax levy of $10 million for 2015, up 2.05 percent over this year. But the levy won’t be finalized until December and there’s a possibility the council will decide not to levy the full amount of $10,056,118. “I’m hoping that we can get it lower than [...]

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