Malecha on Social Services in Rice County
Rice County fell woefully behind in handling social services applications in the last year. Rice County Commissioner for district 2, Galen Malecha says the county faced state sanctions which would mean the loss of funding. He says it would cost more in the long run to lose that funding than to hire more employees to service those applications. The county is reimbursed half the workers wages. The Board voted earlier this year to hire 2 employees to assist with applications when 4 was requested. Earlier this year, Rice county backed out of a collaboration with 12 Southeastern Minnesota counties to consolidate resources for social services. Malecha says when 3 other counties backed out, rice county commissioners chose to back out as well because that gave Olmstead county 51% of the vote. Malecha says that would be like handing over your checkbook without any say it how the money is spent. Malecha pushed to form a Social Services committee which was met with resistance to say the least. He says there’s a misconception as to the type of people requesting help. The number one user group are Senior Citizens. After much discussion, the committee has been formed and will consist of Commissioners Malecha and Jake Gillen along with the County Administrator and the Social Services Director Mark Shaw. Malecha says the goal is to find ways to streamline the system, to find possible collaborations that make sense and, for him, to get to the place where the people who need the services, receive them. Malecha will face Jeff Quinnell this November to retain his seat on the Board of the Rice County Commissioners.
Dundas council meets tonight
The Dundas City Council meets tonight at 7 o’clock. The League of Minnesota Cities Insurance Trust has billed the City for litigation costs involved in the appeal of the council’s decision not to require an EAW for the construction of the new worship space by Rejoice! Church. The trust’s cost totaled over $14,000. The city is responsible for 15% of that plus the deductible of nearly $2500. They’ll vote to approve payment.
City Council votes on final approval of PSC financing
On Tuesday the Northfield city council will hold a special meeting at 7 o’clock just before their work session. Council will vote to approve the final financing for the Public Safety Center Project, the sale of nearly 6.3 million dollars in Certificates of Participation. Proceeds from this sale along with $1,000,000 of cash on hand will constitute the total financing for the land purchase and construction of the new facility. Council previously authorized the purchase of the Cowles site. The cash comes from the General Fund ($500,000), the Capital Reserve Fund ($400,000) and the IT Equipment Replacement Fund ($100,000). The entire 551 page document is up on the city’s website (this link takes you right to the packet) and at the library. Included in the material you can view is a summary, a glossary of terms and a Frequently asked questions section. The meeting will be streamed live online at kymnradio.net.
Public meeting on resurfacing of Hwy. 19
A Public meeting is scheduled for tomorrow evening to learn more about the Hwy 19 resurfacing project between Northfield and Cannon Falls. The open house is from 4:30 to 6:30pm at Northfield City Hall. Representatives from MN Dot will be on hand to answer questions and provide information about the project.
Sign, sign everywhere a sign
Political signs are littering lawns and, in some cases, illegally posted along highways. The Northfield News reports that there’ve been complaints of signs stolen from yards, some vandalized and signs posted in public places. City Clerk Deb Little said Northfield has a sign ordinance but it’s superceded by state law, which essentially tells campaigns to keep out of right-of-ways and areas that may impact public safety. The city gives information about how to post signs to candidates who file for office at City Hall. She says the set back varies but should be at least 15 feet. Check with MN Dot if you want to place signs along highways.
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