In 1980 the City of Northfield and Waterford Township entered into an annexation agreement for the land where Multek sits. At the time the City agreed to reimburse Waterford for the tax dollars they would no longer receive. In 2010 Council voted to stop the payments because State law changed and said that Cities only had to pay up to 6 years of any annexation agreement. By that time, Northfield had already been paying for 29 years totaling a little over $76,000. Waterford continued to bill Northfield,
and the City ignored them. Former Mayor Dana Graham, along with Administrator Martig were near an agreement that would’ve give a lump sum and end the payments, but it all fell apart and now Waterford Township, once again, asserts that the 1980 agreement still stands and that Northfield owes them $32,000 and payments should continue in perpetuity. Their request was rejected but Nfld Council did approve to request moving forward with the OAH (Office of Administrative Hearings) to seek mediation as an alternative dispute resolution, instead of litigation. Mayor Pownell and Martig will relay this information with a written response to Waterford Township. Nfld Attorney Chris Hood said, if Waterford decides to litigate, they would have to try mediation first. Right now, should they choose to mediate, it would be voluntary. Northfield will offer to pay the first $1,000 of the mediation cost for Waterford, should they choose to mediate.
ATV and alcohol don’t mix on the golf course
A woman upset that golfers were hitting balls at her horses, hops on her ATV and tears up the fairway. 52 year old Suzette Bernadine Belgarde is charged with felony 1st degree damage to property and 2 counts of 2nd degree DUI after allegedly driving on the Straight River Golf Course in Faribault with an ATV causing over a $1,000 worth of damage. Rice County deputies were called September 2nd by an employee of the golf course reporting Belgarde, who lives next door, narrowly missed a few people as she drove around. The deputy found a piece of mail with her name on it. She denied driving her ATV on the fairway, but when told there was video, she said she’d pay for damage. Belgarde failed field sobriety tests and blew a .266 on the breath test, more than 3 times the legal limit. Her initial court appearance is September 28th.
“This didn’t need to happen” – Sheriff encourages planning ahead
The month of August was tough in Rice County. Sheriff Troy Dunn said they had 2 fatalities and 2 serious injury crashes. He said after the second crash he wanted to hold a press conference, showing the victims faces and saying, “this didn’t need to happen, a majority of these crashes are preventable. People are driving distracted, they’re driving impaired, they’re driving too fast”. Dunn encourages folks to use First Choice Shuttle during Defeat Days and to take advantage of a pilot project this year, JoyRide. Information is at the Entertainment center. Look for Sheriff Dunn in the DJJD Parade on Sunday.
Parking, pedestrians and fake money
Local law enforcement is ready for the weekend. Northfield Police Chief Monte Nelson said all hands are on deck and echoes Sheriff Dunn to plan ahead if you’re going to consume alcohol. Other issues are parking and pedestrians. It’s always a bit complicated, he encourages patience! Another item they watch for is people with fake money hitting the vendors. With cash and long lines, it’s difficult for vendors to keep a close eye on the bills. Nelson said they partnered with them to make sure they all have new, fresh pens/markers that are used to check bills. Nelson reminds folks to lock up your vehicles, your home, your shed and garage. If you have valuables, put them in the trunk.
Hwy 52 traffic will be stopped in Cannon Falls in both directions for 15 minute intervals between 2 and 6 o’clock on Saturday morning. Crews will be placing bridge beams. Four beam will be placed. The bridge replacements are between Goodhue Co. 24 and Hwy 19.