By Teri Knight, News Director
A single car crash took the life of a young man from Farmington. Just before midnight Friday, 19-year-old Ryan Mumm was traveling in the 30700 block of Northfield Boulevard in Waterford Township when he crashed. The Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s office said Mumm died of multiple head injuries. According to the Star Tribune, Mumm was wearing a seatbelt at the time. The crash investigation has been turned over to the Minnesota State Patrol reconstructionist.
To be or not to be a city, Bridgewater Township’s quest for incorporation continues
To be a city or not, Bridgewater Township supervisors have enlisted legal and financial advice on whether it makes sense for the township to incorporate. Supervisor Glen Castore has said that one of the reasons [to incorporate] is the loss of revenue that will occur as the Rice County landfill, which is in Bridgewater, fills up, which could be in 20 to 25 years. The revenue the township gets is $150,000 to $175,000 a year; that’s 25% of their income. If they become a city they have control over the land use, which could potentially bring in development and make up the revenue. John Holden commented on the idea of incorporation, “We have lost some of our population through just ordinary attrition but also through annexation and so I thought it was a good idea because as Bridgewater shrinks, if it does shrink, we lose tax revenue and we’ve got to figure out some way to counter that.” As for the rural feel of the community, Holden said, “We want to keep Bridgewater very close to what it is now but allow for more expansion through planning and zoning, ie., more residential, possibly some light industrial but not heavy industrial.” Northfield city councilors just approved offering Bridgewater a five year extension to the current annexation agreement so long as they don’t pursue incorporation while the communities discuss details. Castore said he’s still forming an opinion, “There’s a number of things that are unclear about the proposal so I think we’ll ask for a meeting to clarify those and then the board will discuss it and decide in July.” Castore said Northfield and Dundas have indicated that Bridgewater’s incorporation is not in their interest, saying, “They’re looking at it in somewhat of an adversarial fashion. Neither city has explained to us why that is, what the problem is.” One problem is if they want to annex land, it won’t be available; however, Castore said, “We have made it plain to both cities that there is a mechanism for transferring land between cities if we incorporate. We’ve made it clear to both cities that we are interested in entering into an agreement with them just like an annexation agreement that says if we become a city, here’s land we would move to Dundas, here’s land we would move to Northfield.” In this way Bridgewater would have control over the land they transfer and it would happen just once. The supervisors have approved developing a petition to incorporate, however, that would not be filed until September.They have studied towns like Scandia, Grant and Columbus, which incorporated in 2000; they each have about 4,000 residents. Bridgewater Township has 1800. The full interview with Castore and Holden is online under the Morning Show tab.
Put down the phone and slow down
Handsfree phone use will become law August 1, 2019. Rice County Attorney John Fossum commented, “Hopefully this legislation is going to achieve its desired effect of getting people to put the phones down while they’re driving and pay attention to their driving.” In the meantime, there’s extra speed enforcement going on now through July 21, 2019.