Cattle rustling. That was the charge. Rice County Attorney John Fossum said, “it sounds kind of funny and outdated but really it means you take livestock that belongs to somebody else and sell it, which is what he did”. Fossum said 43 year old Paul Seeman was convicted early last year of taking animals he did not own and selling them at a slaughterhouse. Seeman was renting grazing land to the owner of the animals, and when the two had a dispute about rent, in 2015 Seeman sold the animals rather than resolve the dispute through legal means. He has not complied with the conditions of his probation. There’s a hearing coming up December 6th. Fossum’s recommendation is prison. He already had over 2 dozen other charges against him including racketeering, perjury and receiving
stolen property totaling over $222,000. He’s accused of swapping out VIN numbers from junk cars to stolen cars and selling them. Those charges are from 2014 and he’s still swapping out public defenders. Seeman will be in court for probation violation December 6th.
Area construction updates
Behind the scenes, Northfield City staff continue to work on funding mechanisms to make the intersection of Hwy 246 and Jefferson Pkwy safe. Public Works Director Dave Bennett said they’re looking at funding opportunities. The Council approved submitting a local road improvement grant. There’s also an opportunity for a “transportation alternative program”. There have been studies and design concepts but the intersection also involves 3 entities, the City, MnDot and the County, which complicates the project. A project nearly set to go is the reconstruction of Co. Rd. 1 between Hwys 3 and 246. Final designs should be ready within the month. Bennett said Council will be working out details of a cost-sharing for the proposed underpass. He expects the County to go out for bid in late winter. Mayor Pownell commented that the East Cannon River Trail should be complete by Thanksgiving. The trail’s been paved, it’s a matter of bringing in topsoil and seeding the area.
Speak your piece on parking
The Northfield City Council will hold a street improvement hearing tomorrow during their council meeting and there will be an opportunity for public input. The Council has approved the design concepts for 2018 projects at 7th and Division and on Washington Street from Woodley to 2nd Street. The proposed plan is designed to calm traffic and improve pedestrian safety, but it also reduces downtown parking spaces. Now is the time to make your voice heard. You can also comment online through noon tomorrow and/or sign up to comment at the meeting. The City Council meeting begins at 6 pm at City Hall. From the link I provided, click on eComment.
Openings for Boards and Commissions
Northfield is seeking applicants to fill volunteer positions on several City advisory boards and commissions including Northfield’s representatives for the Northfield Area Fire and Rescue Service Joint Powers Board or NAFRS. At the end of December, the terms of several members of the City’s boards and commissions will expire. Go to the City of Northfield’s website Boards & Commissions page (http://www.ci.northfield.mn.us/Index.aspx?NID=98) for information and applications for all City boards and commissions.