Stearns County is set to receive storm-recovery aid after a $4.5 million relief package was approved Monday during a special legislative session.
The package will assist 18 counties which suffered storm damage in June. The funding will be used to help with debris removal, emergency protective measures and infrastructural work – including on roads and bridges. Stearns is estimated to have suffered nearly $552,000 in damages, with the statewide total at almost $18 million. The state is covering 25 percent of that total and will receive a 75-percent match from the federal government.
Rep. Jeff Howe (R-Rockville) will be among legislators and other Minnesota officials attending the commissioning of the USS Minnesota submarine in Virginia Sept. 7.
Howe, a Navy veteran of more than three decades, will be on hand as the U.S. Navy’s newest submarine is commissioned. The 7,800-ton, 377-foot submarine is the third Navy vessel to bear Minnesota’s name – and the state’s first Navy-fleet namesake since 1907.
“This event is especially important to me since my military service began in the Navy,” Howe said. “This will be a very humbling experience and I am honored to be among those representing Minnesota – and particularly our part of the state – at this event.”
Reports indicate the USS Minnesota can reach more than 800 feet underwater and travel at more than 25 knots in submersion. It is equipped with its own nuclear reactor – eliminating the need for refueling while submerged – and can house a crew of 135 for months at a time.
Howe will be covering his own expenses for this trip, which will come at no cost to taxpayers.
At its Aug. 14 meeting, the Eden Valley-Watkins School Board approved the student and staff handbooks for the 2013-14 school year.
Building projects are moving forward on schedule. The most visible one, at the high school, will be landscaping that will be done later this month. The Eden Valley Elementary cafeteria floor is being re-done. The air handler is being installed at Watkins Elementary, and the boilers and hot water heater already installed; everything at the Watkins school should be completed this week.
The sound system is up and working well at the high school, with other parts of the stage being installed now. Automated door locks at the high school are all installed and working. Five of the new security cameras at the high school were not working properly; they may be replaced, and the wiring has been adjusted so that everything will work correctly.
The South Haven City Council met Aug. 6. In their consent agenda, they approved a $300 commitment in 2014 to the Initiative Foundation; approved the 2014-15 police contract with Wright County Sheriff’s Department at $62.50 per hour in 2014 and $64.50 per hour in 2015; and approved transfer of $4,000 again this year from the South Haven Fire Dept. to the South Haven Fire Relief Assoc. to cover administrative expenses.
The council appointed Annette Gunnerson to fill the seat vacated by Tony Stanley. Her term will be from August 2013 through December 2014. Gunnerson has served on the council in the past, and she will work with Mayor John Lemke overseeing streets and parks.
In the consent agenda at its July 16 meeting, the council approved: gambling permit for Kimball Legion Club Sept. 11; dance license for Kimball Fire Relief Assoc. for Aug. 10 (street dance during Kimball days); temporary liquor license for Kimball Fire Relief Assoc. Aug. 8-10 (during Kimball Days); shut off delinquent utilities July 18; approve minutes of June 4 council meeting, June 17 employee meeting, and July 11 employee meeting; accept resignation of Laurie Bisila from Kimball Fire & Rescue Dept.; approve hiring of Josh Eastridge for Kimball Fire & Rescue Dept.; extension of licensed premise for Main Street Pub (during Kimball Days).
The City of Kimball and Kimball Fire & Rescue Department acknowledged the retirement of Cary Maus from the department.
Kimball Fireman’s Relief Assoc. (Dennis Beck) proposed a benefit increase to $950/year, effective Jan. 1, 2014.