Sherburne County Sheriff Joel Brott

by Joni Astrup Associate Editor Sherburne County Sheriff Joel Brott credits a school guidance counselor for steering him into law enforcement. Brott was in high school in St. Cloud when he took an assessment test and met with the guidance counselor, who suggested criminal justice would be a good fit. That prompted Brott to check [...]

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A: When speaking with the public about traffic safety and knowing the propensity of typical Minnesota weather, the majority of people believe that most severe and fatal traffic crashes occur in the winter months when roads can be at their worst in our fine state.  However, the opposite is true. According to the Minnesota Department [...]

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Answer: Grass fires and unlawful fires can pose a serious threat to life and property in Sherburne County.  Because of this, almost all open fires require a burning permit. You are not required to obtain a burning permit if the ground is snow covered.  By definition, snow covered means that the ground has a continuous unbroken cover of snow, to a depth of three inches or more, surrounding the immediate area of the fire, sufficient to keep the fire from spreading. You also do not need a burning permit when you have a fire in an approved burner (i.e. burning barrels) and it is in use between 6 p.m. to 8:00 a.m.  For a fire in an approved burner without a permit there should be no combustible material within five feet of the base of the burner. Finally, a campfire does not require a burning permit.  “Campfire” means a fire set for cooking, warming, or ceremonial purposes, which is not more than three feet in diameter by three feet high, and has had the ground five feet from the base of the fire cleared of all combustible material. All other fires require a burning permit.  Burning permits can be obtained from a DNR forestry office or any fire warden. The DNR institutes burning permit restrictions in the fire prone portions of the state each spring. During this period of traditionally high fire danger, burning permits are not issued. Under extremely dry conditions, the Commissioner of Natural Resources, or another unit of government, may declare a “burning ban” for a specified area within the state. When this occurs, not only existing permits are canceled and new permits not issued, but burning in approved burners, recreational fires, and even smoking outdoors may be prohibited, depending on the fire danger. This action is generally taken when fire conditions become extreme across a broad area of the state (for example, a number of counties or large geographic region). If you have questions about burning or open fires, you can contact the Sheriff’s Office or your local DNR office or Fire Warden.–Sheriff Joel Brott

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by Sheriff Joel Brott First-time alcohol offenders with an alcohol concentration of 0.16 or above and all second-time alcohol offenders have the option of regaining their driving privileges by participating in the Minnesota Ignition Interlock Device Program, otherwise they may be without those privileges for approximately a year. An ignition interlock is a device the [...]

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Sherburne County Sheriff Joel Brott advises that temperatures above freezing and the recent rains have combined to create unfavorable ice conditions for winter recreational activities at this time. Therefore, caution is advised when venturing out on the ice. “Remember there is no such thing as 100 percent safe ice,” Brott said in a  news release. [...]

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