State Rep. Dean Urdahl, R-Acton Township, announces Eden Valley will receive a financing package of $1.3 million for replacement of both a Highway 22 water main and sewer.
There are three components to the package, issued by the Minnesota Public Facilities Authority: $697,316 in a principal forgiveness grant, a $470,625 loan at 1.463 percent interest, and a $174,329 loan at 1 percent interest.
Both loans carry 20-year terms and the PFA estimates the favorable financing will save local taxpayers around $150,000 when compared with current market rates.
“These are important projects for Eden Valley and it is good to see the terms of this package will save local taxpayers,” Urdahl said. “Congratulations to city officials for submitting a successful application and for showing a commitment to improving the drinking water and wastewater systems in town.”
The 23rd annual Physically Disabled Veterans Deer Hunt is planned for Oct. 1-2, at Camp Ripley near Little Falls.
This year, 60 veterans with disabilities, ages 22-90, from around the state will participate, 16 of these veterans will be hunting from wheelchairs.
Participating veterans have served in World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
Event sponsors include the St. Cloud VA Health Care System, Minnesota Army National Guard – Camp Ripley, and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
Event supporters include the following Minnesota veterans organizations:
• American Legion & Auxiliary
• Disabled American Veterans & Auxiliary
• Veterans of Foreign Wars & Auxiliary
• Veterans 4 Veterans Foundation
• Paralyzed Veterans of America
Additional support is from Rice Sportsman’s Club, Minnesota Patriot Guard-Riders, Minnesota BPOE (ELKS), and Mid-West Outdoor Unlimited.
With many small game seasons open and pheasant season soon to open, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is reminding hunters that youth age 15 or younger no longer need a free license to hunt small game.
In recent years, youth age 15 and under were able to hunt for free but were required to have a complimentary license in their possession.
“This hunting season it’s very simple for kids 15 and younger,” said Jay Johnson, DNR hunting recruitment and retention supervisor. “They can hunt grouse, squirrels, ducks, pheasant and rabbits without any license or stamps.”
Johnson said youth hunters still need to comply with firearms safety certification and other requirements. Free and reduced price licenses are one of the tools the DNR is using to encourage youth to experience and continue hunting, he said.
Youth 13 and younger must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.
Grouse season opened Saturday, Sept. 14. Waterfowl season opened Saturday, Sept. 21. Pheasant season opens Saturday,
The Stearns County Board of Commissioners approved its preliminary budget and levy for 2014. For the third year in a row,
Stearns County proposed to reduce its levy. With a total budget of $133 million, the tax levy for 2014 stands at $68-million, down about .01 percent from last year.
Several items are driving the 2014 budget. Additional dollars are allocated to:
• Road construction projects
• Personnel, including an unexpected $1 million insurance increase in response to the federal Affordable Care Act and $299,000 for new hires
• Human Services for services and contracts in response to higher demand for mental health, out-of-home placement, and juvenile detention services
• Expenses associated with running the 2014 election: training, equipment, balloting, etc.
• Various technology projects that will be implemented county-wide.
Mies Outland tax abatement
The Watkins City Council held a special meeting before the regular meeting Thursday, Sept. 12, to discuss tax abatement for Mies Outland for their 3,000-sq. ft. addition that will house an Indian Motorcycles showroom.
The current abatements will be rescinded with the new agreement that will run five years, from 2014-2020. The cost to the city is $25,000 per year (money that otherwise would have been paid as taxes); Meeker County will parallel the abatement for about $12,000 per year.
Included in the tax abatement agreement is stipulation that Mies Outland will add the equivalent of six full-time jobs within two years of project completion (scheduled for Nov. 1). These jobs will be part of the Indian Motorcycles franchise.
The tax abatement was approved unanimously by the council believing that it is in the best interest of the city.