By Teri Knight, News Director
The City of Northfield bid the 2019 street reclamation project twice. The first time was in April and they didn’t receive any bids, largely due to the size of the project, in particular the Third Street corridor and the timeline that they had to work with. They rebid the job to allow for work to take place into 2020. On Tuesday, staff reported they had four bids come in about 20% higher than anticipated. The award went to Heselton Construction out of Faribault for nearly $3.6 million – $36,000 of that will
go to the arts & culture commission as council last year approved awarding 1% of last years street project to them. (This is in their Comprehensive Plan as a goal and they’re working with the ACC to create a resolution) The highest bid came in at $4.2 million. Property owner meetings will begin in July for the work that will be started this year. All the work is on the west side of town but they’ll begin on the northern portion. Work is scheduled to start later in July with the entire project ending in September of 2020. As reported yesterday, the council did hear an objection to the amount assessed in the John North Park area and decreased assessments for several homeowners living in those cul-de-sacs. 2019 Street Project Location Map
Appeals court upholds sentencing in distracted driving case
Once again the man convicted of killing another man in a distracted driving case is back in Rice County court today. In April, KYMN had the story of 43-year-old Chad Micheal Gibson who was convicted of criminal vehicular homicide and operation in a 2016 crash on I-35 at Highway 60 that killed one man and left his wife severely injured. For his conviction, he was given 105 months at the St. Cloud State Prison but in June of last year, the sentence was stayed for 10 years, meaning no prison time. District Judge Jeffrey Johnson believed Gibson was amenable to probation and that the act wasn’t egregious because he wasn’t impaired by alcohol or drugs. Instead he was excessively speeding and reaching for a soda. Rice County Attorney John Fossum appealed the sentence and in April of this year, the Court of Appeals agreed with him and reversed Gibson’s sentence. Fossum said, “This is what we were looking for all along. This is a presumptive commit to prison.” He said Gibson belongs in prison. In Gibson’s statement to Judge Johnson and the victim’s family, Gibson focused on how much HE lost. Fossum added, “He was being remorseful that there were consequences for him and difficulties for him.” This morning Gibson, once again, went before Judge Johnson. The sentence was upheld and he’ll receive credit for 250 days served. Gibson is awaiting transport to St. Cloud State Prison from the Rice County jail. He’s also been ordered to pay nearly $17,000 in restitution. This formal statement from Attorney John Fossum was released at 12:06pm today: Media Release Chad Gibson Resentencing
Dundas Chief Kline looks to continue collaboration
Dundas Police Chief Eric Kline has been officially on the job with that title for just over six months, but he has been with the department for 11 years. Kline went to high school in Faribault, then to Alexandria Technical College and Metro State University for his Bachelor’s degree. He started at the Rice County jail, saying, “It was probably the best introduction for me into law enforcement. I got to learn a lot of things, interact with officers and basically learn how to talk to people. You kind of see the other side of things. I hate to use the term ‘bad guys’ because a lot of these people, they are good people they just make poor life decisions or they’re on drugs or something.” He commented on the cooperation between the different local law enforcement agencies, saying, “The more we can work together, share information, it’s going to benefit everybody. My goal is to have our officers work very closely with the Sheriff’s office, the City of Northfield or any other agency within the county that might need it.” Kline’s full interview is on kymnradio.net.