July 2018

Tue
10
Jul
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NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING

PUBLIC HEARING NOTICE

    Notice is hereby given that a public meeting and hearing of the Upper MN Valley Regional Development Commission will be held on Tuesday, July 24, 2018.  The hearing is to solicit public response and input on the FY2019 budget and tax levy for calendar year 2019.  The hearing will begin at 5:30pm at the Kilowatt Community Center in Granite Falls.  A copy of the budget is available at the Commission office in Appleton.  The regular business meeting will be conducted during the public hearing.

Dawn Hegland
Executive Director
7-11-2c

Tue
10
Jul
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NOTICE OF COMPLETED APPLICATION

NOTICE OF COMPLETED APPLICATION

STATE OF MINNESOTA
BEFORE THE EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES
REGULATORY BOARD

In the Matter of the License
Application of Appleton Ambulance Service
Appleton, Minnesota

Tue
10
Jul
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ROAD CONSTRUCTION PROJECT

SWIFT COUNTY HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT
Road Construction Project
BIDS CLOSE July 31st 2018
Benson, Minnesota

NOTICE TO CONTRACTORS -
   Sealed proposals will be received until:

10:00 AM  Tuesday July 31st 2018

at the Swift County Highway Administration Building, 1635 Hoban Avenue, PO Box 241, Benson, MN 56215.  Sealed bids will then be opened and publicly read at 10:00 AM at the Swift County Highway Administration Building, for the construction project listed below:

Type of work:  Bituminous Reclamation, Grading, & Aggregate Base

SAP 076-625-014        Location:  On Swift CSAH 25 –  From US TH 12 to Mn TH 9
CP 18-01                     Location:  On Swift County Road 72 – From US TH 12 to Swift CSAH 25

Project Net Length:    CSAH 25  -  10,742’  (2.034 Miles)
            CR 72  -  2,364’  (0.447 Miles)

Tue
10
Jul
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DOES RURAL MINNESOTA MATTER IN STATEWIDE ELECTIONS?

In the grand scheme of statewide Minnesota politics, do rural voters matter? That question is being raised more often, though only in quiet corners of the kingmakers’ strategy sessions. Republicans and Democratic party leaders weigh where to spend their funds for getting out the vote, where they will spend to support candidates in tight races, and where to concentrate their advertising dollars based on the demographics of where they get the best return for their investment.

Increasingly, at least for the Democratic-Farmer-Labor (DFL) Party, that investment is in the seven-county metropolitan area surrounding Minneapolis and St. Paul, as well as in a few of the larger cities around the state.

MinnPost, a Twin Cities membership-supported website covering political, social and rural issues, recently published a story with the headline, “In a statewide election, do candidates really need to bother with Greater Minnesota?”

Mon
09
Jul
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Kathleen "Kathy" Olson

KATHLEEN 'KATHY' OLSON

KATHLEEN 'KATHY' OLSON
March 31, 1939 • July 7, 2018

A Memorial Service will be held at 2:00 p.m. Friday, July 13, 2018 at the Daniel Funeral Home in St. Joseph, Minnesota  for Kathleen Ione Olson, 79.  She died Saturday, July 7, 2018 at the St. Cloud Hospital.  Susan Putzke, a Chaplin at the St. Cloud Hospital, will officiate. Inurnment will be at a later date in the Benson City Cemetery, Benson.  Visitation will be one hour prior to the services Friday at Daniel Funeral Home.

Mon
09
Jul
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Verna Pillatzki

 Verna Lorraine Pillatzki

VERNA PILLATZKI
September 21, 1929 ~ July 6, 2018

Verna Pillatzki, 88, of Benson, Minnesota, died Friday evening July 6, 2018 at the Swift County Benson Hospital.

Visitation will be held Thursday, July 12, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. at the St. Francis Catholic Church in Benson, with a 4:30 p.m. rosary and prayer service. Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 1:30 p.m. Friday July 13, at the St. Francis Catholic Church in Benson. Interment will be in the St. Francis Catholic Church Cemetery.

Verna Lorraine Pillatzki, 88, was born September 21, 1929 on a farm near Kerkhoven, Minnesota, the daughter of Otto and Gladys (Bengtson) Mattson. She was baptized in the Lutheran Church November 2, 1929 and confirmed May, 20, 1945.  August 3, 1948 she was baptized and received her first communion at St. Francis Catholic Church in Benson and later confirmed by Father Dorrer,  August 15, 1948. She attended Country school and completed the 8th grade.

Fri
06
Jul
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Civic Center bids higher than expected

When the District 777 Board of Education budgeted for improvements to the north end of the Benson Civic Center this past February, it set the expenditure ceiling at $695,600.

At a special school meeting Monday noon in the superintendent’s office, the board reviewed bids opened June 21 that were substantially higher than expected.

Just the base bids ranged from $493,000 to $800,945. However, the base bids came with three additional construction add-ons that raised the price to between $834,100 and $1.125 million. Those alternate bids included adding a gymnastics pit, adding ceiling insulation and protection, and adding fire protection.

But it isn’t just the higher cost that presents a challenge for the school board; it is also the Civic Center’s location in a flood plain. Under state law, the school board can’t spend more than half the value of a building located in a flood plain on improvements.

Fri
06
Jul
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$4 million payment coming to city next week

With Xcel Energy’s purchase of Benson Power, LLC, finalized last Friday, the City of Benson is now scheduled to receive a $4 million payment next week for future economic development efforts.

Another $16 million in payments is to follow on June 1 over the next three years. In each 2019 and 2020, the city is scheduled to receive $6 million in payments. It is to get a final $3 million payment bringing the total of the four payments to $19 million.

Those funds are intended to be used to replace the loss the city will experience in jobs, economic activity and local tax base due to Xcel’s plans to shut down Benson Power and level the site.

Fri
06
Jul
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N.D. PSC votes to let Xcel shut down Benson Power

North Dakota’s Public Service Commission  voted unanimously June 27 to approve Xcel Energy’s plan to purchase and shut down  Benson Power, LLC.

Xcel notified the City of Benson last Friday that financial closure of the deal with Benson Power’s East Coast insurance company investor owners had taken place, City Manager Rob Wolfington said.

Based in downtown Minneapolis, Xcel Energy has a single subsidiary for its electrical and gas businesses in North Dakota and Minnesota.  As that two-state subsidiary, Northern States Power Company (NSP) was the entity that petitioned the PSC for relief from the agreements governing the future of Benson Power.

The question before the North Dakota PSC was, “Is NSP’s proposal to terminate its biomass power purchase agreement with Benson Power, LLC, acquire the Benson facility and subsequently close the facility prudent?”

Fri
06
Jul
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Redesign upgrades golf club

Benson Golf Club Board Chair Jerry Peterson, at left, gives the Benson City Council a tour Monday night of the improvements recently made to the exterior of the clubhouse and the grounds.

When it completed its regular agenda Monday evening, the Benson City Council drove to the city-owned golf club and course to see the recent improvements to the clubhouse and grounds.

While the city owns the facility, it is operated by the membership through an elected board of directors. As the population of the area has fallen over the past several decades, and as more golf courses have been built, it has been harder for the club to make ends meet.

Weather during the playing season and the health of the area’s economy can also have an impact on revenues earned and expenses. Unusually heavy rainfalls in past years have flooded the course while severe windstorms have downed numerous trees, causing it to close temporarily for short periods. A near record cold April this year led to little play that month.

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