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WEDNESDAY - JULY 26, 2017

GROWER input on nitrogen fertilizer rule sought at meetings in NW MN

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) has extended the public comment period for its draft proposal for the use of nitrogen fertilizer in Minnesota. The purpose of the proposed Nitrogen Fertilizer Rule is to minimize the potential for nitrate-nitrogen contamination from fertilizer in the state's groundwater and drinking water. Public comments will now be accepted through Friday, August 25, 2017. “We’ve heard from farmers, commodity groups, and other leaders in our ag industry that more time is needed for them to weigh in on this proposal,” said MDA Commissioner Dave Frederickson. “We need their input and we’re going to make that extension. We’re also going to hold additional meetings in Northwestern Minnesota at the request of ag leaders and members of the public in that region.”

Dave Torgerson, Executive Director of the Minnesota Association of Wheat Growers, said that the proposed regulation is flawed for several reasons: “Minnesota’s just a big state, and trying to put one nitrogen fertilizer rule for the entire state is not realistic. The U of M breaks up the state into different regions for how farmers should manage their nitrogen, and they have different recommendations for different regions. The University recognizes each reason, but the state regulatory process wants to put a blanket rule across the entire state. It’s just not realistic to think about NW MN being the same as SE MN – it’s totally different. We need to manage this thing differently, we have different problems, and different solutions, too. There’s a lot of awareness of those nitrate problems in other parts of the state, but the Department of Ag developed these rules, and they’re for the entire state. Northwest Minnesota got caught up in it, but the Department was up in McIntosh this week, and I think they realized that something is wrong up in NW MN with their strategy. They are coming back to get more input, and I think they are really listening. But it’s really important that growers come to these listening sessions that the Dept of Ag is holding so they get that there is a concern about this, and so the Dept can get good solutions to changing the rules that they have presented here. Right now they’re just drafts, but without grower input from NW MN they might not get it right. We want them to get it right, so grower input is really important.”

Torgerson said that the unique make-up of the valley soil, coupled with the climate and growing season, help to ensure that nitrogen leaching is much less likely in our area. “The growers at the meeting in McIntosh made a point about how we’re so much colder up here, the ground freezes deeper compared with the south, so the nitrogen isn’t going to leach or move in that frozen ground. We know that NW MN has less rainfall than the southern part of the state, which also reduces the leaching. And we have clay soils in a lot of areas; there may be coarse, sandy soil on top, but there is clay below that, where the water can’t infiltrate very quickly. There are just a whole lot of things that are different about regions in the state. The Department of Agriculture couldn’t identify the problem (in our area), and so to make wholesale switches in our production system when there isn’t a problem that we know of, or we haven’t been aware of is hard, and it will impact a lot of growers significantly in a big area. South of Crookston is in that area, and the NWROC, which has some of the best land in the state, is also in that vulnerable area, and I don’t think they ever expected that to happen. It caught people by surprise, and I think that is why the Department is coming back to our area, moving quickly and gathering input, because they realize that they’re going to have to make some changes. I think they are open to listening, so that’s why they set up the listening sessions, and that’s why we’re encouraging growers to go to them. People showing up in numbers is important; even if you don’t say anything, just by being there, you send a message to the Department.”

Growers can contact the University of Minnesota Extension Service at 218-281-8569, or Minnesota Association of Wheat Growers at 218-253-4311 for more information on the sessions, or on submitting comments. All comments regarding the proposed rule must be submitted in writing. After consideration of comments received, the MDA expects to publish the final draft of the rule in the fall of 2017. The rule is expected to be adopted in the fall of 2018.

Written comments on the draft Nitrogen Fertilizer Rule should be submitted by Friday, August 25, 2017 via mail or email to:

Larry Gunderson
Fertilizer Technical Unit Supervisor
Minnesota Department of Agriculture
625 Robert Street North
St. Paul, MN, 55155-2538
larry.gunderson@state.mn.us

All comments should, but are not required to, include a contact name, phone number and/or email address to provide for follow-up discussion on specific comments.

 

 

 

 

CATHOLIC DAUGHTERS COURT BISHOP SCHENK SPONSORING BACK TO SCHOOL SUPPLY PROJECT

A Back to School supply project is being sponsored by the Catholic Daughters Court Bishop Schenk for the Cathedral Elementary School and the other local Crookston schools. This drive is in conjunction with Care and Share, the Salvation Army and the Crookston Rotary Bus project. Items needed are glue, notebooks, crayons, backpacks, mittens, socks, pencils, tissues, other clothing, etc. Supplies can be left in special containers in the gathering spaces at Cathedral, Northern Sky Bank, St Peter’s in Gentilly, and St Mary’s in Euclid. Anyone can participate in this project. If you have any questions or pickup is needed, please contact Jean LaJesse at 281-6706.

 

 

 

AMERICAN LEGION AUXILIARY HOLDS STATE CONVENTION IN MAHNOMEN

The American Legion Auxiliary Department of Minnesota held their 98th State Convention in Mahnomen, Minnesota on July 13-15, 2017. American Legion Auxiliary members from Warren, Karlstad, Middle River and Thief River Falls representing Units in Northwest Minnesota were Jean Walker, Joanie Krantz, Pat Hanson, Bonnie Wagner and Lynn Carr. Carol Kottom of Buffalo, Minnesota, State President of the American Legion Auxiliary presided.  Honorary Department Junior President, Kana Coleman-Woods, a member of the Lino Lakes Unit 566 brought greetings from the Junior Auxiliary.

Special Highlights of this convention were:

Margee Keller(Crookston), Department Children and Youth Chair reported on her program and presented the Milo Blanich Children and Youth Plaque to Hayfield Unit 330 and the Glen H Dornfeld Children and Youth Plaque to Fridley Unit 303. 

Crookston Unit 20 received Certificates of Merit in Poppy, Past President’s Parley, Children and Youth, Veterans Affairs and Rehabilitation, Service to Veterans and Margee Keller received a Certificate of Participation in Public Relations.

Jean Walker (Warren), Department Veterans Affairs and Rehabilitation Chairman reported on her program and presented Binger Plaque to Dawn Grosinger, Monticello Unit 260 and the Junior Award was presented to the Warren Unit 27.

Warren Unit 27 received Certificates of Merit in Constitution and Standing Rules, Junior Activities, Poppy, Memorial, Americanism and Public Relations. Jean Walker received a Certificate of Appreciation from the Auxiliary Emergency Fund and Bev Johnson, Junior Activities Unit Chairman,  received the Starr Lauck Americanism Plaque for the most outstanding Americanism Youth Program. Warren Juniors also received a Certificate of Merit for their Junior History.


Newly elected officers for 2017-2018 American Legion Auxiliary, Department of Minnesota are:  Donna Arends, Department President from Wilmar, Jean Walker, Department First Vice President from Warren and Mary Hendrickson, Department Second Vice President from Cloquet.  The newly elected Alternate National Executive Committeewoman is Raleen Tolzmann from Nicollet.

 

 

 

HUGO'S DONATES PROCEEDS FROM 2ND ANNUAL GOLF SCRAMBLE TO UNITED WAY


Mitch Bakken, United Way Board, Bob O'Halloran, Hugo's Manager, Katya Zepeda, United Way Executive Director and Sarah Olmstead, United Way Board were on hand for the check presentation

 

 

 

HOST FAMILIES SOUGHT FOR INTERNATIONAL HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS

Seeking host families for high school aged exchange students (15- 18 years old)  interested in coming to the  area for a half or full school year for 2017-2018. Students come with health insurance and spending money.  Host families provide meals and transportation to/from school (if needed). All you need is a bedroom or even a shared room in your home.
Hosting gives you a chance to make life-long friends, share our culture and learn about other cultures. If you are interested in hosting an international student please contact: Kathy at 218-773-7935, or twites@invisimax.com  Website: http://www.forteexchange.org  Forte International Exchange is a non- profit organization.

 

 

 

 

TUESDAY - JULY 25,  2017

CROOKSTON CITY COUNCIL TAKES RED LAKE RIVER CORRIDOR PROJECT APP OFF THE AGENDA

The Crookston City Council met last night to tackle a full list of business items. They passed resolutions to approve City of Crookston bills and disbursements in the amount of $275,182.86; to approve Partial Payment Estimate No. 1 to Knife River Materials for 2017 Local Funded Street Improvements in the amount of $146,966.51, and for Partial Payment Estimate No. 1 to Knife River Materials for 2017 Federal Funded Street Improvements in the amount of $670,065.56; to approve the designation of parks in the City of Crookston; and to provide preliminary approval and calling a public hearing on the issuance of refunding revenue bonds by the City under M.S., Sections 469.152 to 469.165, at the request of RiverView Health Association dba RiverView Health.

The resolutions to support the Red Lake River Corridor Joint Powers Board application to Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission application as fiscal host; and to approve matching funds of $490,818 for the Red Lake River Corridor Project application to the Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission were removed from the consent agenda on Councilman Tom Vedbraaten’s request. He and Councilman Bobby Baird were the two lone nay votes on the resolution to approve the two items, primarily based on their feelings that City taxpayer money should not be used to develop river access land outside of Crookston, and that information was lacking about the ongoing maintenance costs for the 20-year leases of the properties, as well as that the proposed Central Park development for additional campsites should include installation of a septic system, along with concerns for handicapped access at the various sites.

 

 

 

WAYS AND MEANS SCRAPS BIKE/WALKING PATHS ON PRIVATE PROPERTY/APPROVES BIKE LANE ON CENTRAL

Due to the size of the crowd attending the Council Meeting, the Ways and Means Committee opted to remain in the Council Room, rather than adjourn to the smaller, upstairs Conference Room. Marty Seifert, with the Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities (CGMC), presented highlights from the recent Legislative Session. Seifert stated that one of the CGMC goals was to increase in Local Government Aid (LGA) base funding of $45.5 million over two years. The final bill passed was for $15 million increase in base funding. Crookston is expected to receive $3,700,601 for its 2018 LGA under the 2017 Tax Bill, which is an increase of $100,048 from 2017. In addition, under the exemption on property value up to $100,000 included in the 2017 Tax Bill, some of the businesses in Crookston will see reductions in their state business property taxes.

The first draft of the Downtown Master Plan, prepared and presented by JLG Architects was one of the agenda items that drew the large crowd.  One resident who voiced her concerns over the proposed trail in the Sampson Addition was Brittany DeStefano, who lives on Woodland Avenue.  “I am at the Council meeting to express my dismay at the grand Master Plan, because they plan to stick a jogging path in back of our house, which we believe is on our property still – they want to confiscate that," said DeStefano.  "I’m just thinking about those poor people on Fairfax Avenue, when they had their front yards and their driveways taken away. They (the City) say they’re not going to do it in a sneaky manner, and that nothing’s definite, but they’ve already done it in a sneaky manner and blindsided those people, so we’re trying to fight for our yards, and our privacy, and our children’s safety.”

Mayor Wayne Melbye requested that JLG remove all trails on private property from the Master Plan draft. “As I say, it’s a Master Plan. You start with something big, and you start honing it down to what you can actually do, and what fits," he said. "As I mentioned tonight, I was really glad that everybody was doing their homework: I had plenty of calls and emails and text messages over the weekend. And folks did show up tonight, voicing their disapproval of having bike paths on the wet side of the levees, and that’s great. I’m glad it wasn’t just me trying to beat that drum. I think everybody got it that we’re not going to be touching the wet side of the dikes on private property.”

John Bridgeford and Jeff Evers (pictured right), representing the Economic Vitality Committee of the Downtown Crookston Development Partnership (DCDP) addressed the Council, urging them to consider implementing a Renaissance Zone for redevelopment projects in downtown Crookston, with a five year tax abatement for business income, and a 15 year property tax abatement on the added value of the redeveloped property, to spur investment in the downtown. The proposal is similar to the Renaissance Zone projects in over 60 cities in North Dakota. “If we do nothing, we’re going to get the same results,” said Evers. Mayor Melbye explained that, “We’ve asked them before to present their ideas on the types of business incentives it would take to get people to put in a business downtown, or anywhere else in Crookston. The Renaissance District focuses mainly on downtown. They’ve come up with a few categories they’d like to share with us. We told them to rustle together the one they think makes the most sense, and get the most action, and they’ll bring that back to us and we’ll have more later on.”

The final presentation of the evening was from the Bike Crookston group, who requested that the Council approve a demonstration project installing bicycle lanes, called ‘sharrows’ along Central Avenue from Elm Street to Barrette Street, and along Barrette Street to the Highland Park entrance. The project was recommended by the Bicycle Alliance of Minnesota as a way to provide a route for children to bicycle safely, introduce bicyclist traffic symbols to drivers, and provide a means for the City of Crookston and MnDOT to collect data on local bicycle use. The temporary bike lane paint will be applied before school resumes in August, and will wear off during the winter.  The Council unanimously approved the project. “They’re looking at a pilot program to try to get something going with bicycles and safety in town. It’s actually learning to share the road with bicyclists," said Melbye. "They’re going to use Central Avenue from Elm Street to Barrette, and along Barrette to the front entrance of the Complex. They’ll have some arrows out there – some chevrons, as they call them, and they’ll try to guide the kids. They’ll have some presentations and demonstrations for bicycle safety and pedestrian safety. Anything to promote safety, this Council is going to go along with – it’s a no-brainer. So just keep watching and I’m sure they’ll get the dates out in the news for when they’re going to present.”


Tim Denny from Bike Crookston addresses the Ways and Means Committee

 

 

 

REGIONAL CORRECTIONS BOARD HEARS ABOUT PLANS TO REPLACE JUVENILE CENTER DIRECTOR IN OCTOBER

We spoke recently with Andrew Larson, Executive Director of Tri-County Community Corrections, about some recent changes approved by the Regional Corrections Board of Directors at their July meeting. One of those changes is the elimination of the job title “Lead Agents,” which will now become “Career Agents,” putting Tri-County Community Corrections more in line with job titles and credentials commonly used throughout the state. “One of the benefits of implementing this career agent lane in our organization, is that I think it’ll actually make us more attractive from a recruitment prospective, as well as providing some additional incentive to retain our existing staff who have put in 8 years, whether it be 8 years within our agency, or a combination of time spent here in combination with time spent in other agencies," Larson explained. " I think implementing this ‘Career Agent’ lane will absolutely make us more attractive as career landing spots for prospective employees. We continue to face challenges, much like everybody else does, in recruiting and retaining qualified staff. I think this is definitely a step in the right direction.”

The Board approved an increase in the per diem rates at the Juvenile Center, according to Larson. “The Board moved to increase our per diem rates at the Juvenile Center. Our rates have historically been far below the rates at other juvenile facilities. The Board did approve a $15/day increase for non-member counties; that will be going into effect on October 1st. Even with this increase, we will still be far below what other agencies in our neck of the woods are charging for housing adolescents on both the secure and residential side of our facility. Really, the intention behind this is to get our numbers and per diem costs more in line with what other jurisdictions are charging, and trying to do that in a manner that’s not overly disruptive to other agency budgets by implementing a $40 or $50/day increase. Last year we implemented a $20 increase, this year we’ll do $15, really just with the intention of making our rates a little more in line with what other jurisdictions are charging, and also in recognizing that it costs money to have a good program and service. This will allow us some additional money to increase our program supplies and increase some different program offerings, so I think it’ll be a good thing for us.”

Plans are currently underway to hire a replacement for a long-time employee of the Corrections Center; Red River Valley Juvenile Center Director, Oscar Meyer, who plans to retire in October. “We are currently going through a recruitment process, are actively advertising, and have implemented an interview plan and process that will hopefully help us in identifying a replacement, who will have very, very large shoes to fill. Anyone who has worked in this area for any length of time, especially with at-risk kids, knows that Oscar is very much a fixture and will be sorely missed, not only by our agency," said Larson. "He will be missed by the agencies and kids that he has helped benefit over the last nearly 33 years that he’s been with our agency, so he will be sorely missed."

 

 

 

PCSD AND CPD TO OFFER SAFETY AWARENESS TRAINING

The Polk County Sheriff’s Department and Crookston Police Department will offer Safety Awareness Training to the public Thursday, July 27 at RiverView Health, 323 S. Minnesota Street, Crookston. The class will consist of basic principals in proactively protecting yourself. The session will include classroom discussion on situation awareness, potential threats and hazards found in any community. Hands on practical exercises on basic self-defense from an unwanted approach or attack will also be shared. Please note: This is not a class or lesson in fighting or martial arts. Class topics will include:
-
Situational awareness and preparedness
- Identifying risks or potential threats
- Being mentally and physically prepared for an unwanted attack
- How to be a good witness
- Police reporting
- Verbal Skills
- Escapes (front and rear attacks)
- Strikes
- Blocks
- Positioning

The session will be held from 6:00 to 7:30 pm in the Minnesota Room. Please enter through the Rehab Entrance on the south side of the building. The event is free.

 

 

CROOKSTON EAGLES AUXILIARY SCHOLARSHIP AWARDED


Rhonda Pahlen presents a scholarship on behalf of the Eagles Auxiliary to Madison Hulst of Crookston

 

 

 

MONDAY - JULY 24,  2017

CROOKSTON MAN CHARGED IN GRAND FORKS BAR EXPLOSION

Grand Forks Police officers were called to the Loft Bar in downtown Grand Forks to respond to the report of an individual setting off fireworks in the bar.  Responding officers located a suspect who had been taken into custody by bar staff.
The preliminary investigation has revealed a suspect set off a large firework inside the main bar area while it was full of customers.  Moderate damage was caused inside the establishment and it was reported that several customers were hit with flying glass as a result of the explosion caused by the firework.
Taken into custody as the result of this investigation, was Isaiah Ramirez, 20 of Crookston.  Ramirez has been preliminarily charged with the following offenses: Endangering by fire or explosion, Criminal mischief, Providing false information to law enforcement, disorderly conduct, Minor in consumption of alcohol, and Minor on liquor premises.
The Grand Forks Police Department is asking any persons who may have been inside the Loft Bar at the time of this explosion and who may have witnessed this incident or who suffered any injuries as a result of this incident to contact the Grand Forks Police Department at 701-787-8000.

 

 

CITY COUNCIL EXPECTED TO APPROVE GRANT APPLICATION

The Crookston City Council will meet on Monday, July 24. Items on the agenda include resolutions to approve City of Crookston bills and disbursements in the amount of $275,182.86; to approve Partial Payment Estimate No. 1 to Knife River Materials for 2017 Local Funded Street Improvements in the amount of $146,966.51, and for Partial Payment Estimate No. 1 to Knife River Materials for 2017 Federal Funded Street Improvements in the amount of $670,065.56; to approve the designation of parks in the City of Crookston; to provide preliminary approval and calling a public hearing on the issuance of refunding revenue bonds by the City under M.S., Sections 469.152 to 469.165, at the request of RiverView Health Association dba RiverView Health; to support Red Lake River Corridor Joint Powers Board application to Greater MN Regional Parks & Trails Commission application as fiscal host; and to approve matching funds of $490,818 for the Red Lake River Corridor Project application to the Greater MN Regional Parks & Trails Commission.
The Council meetings are open to the public, and individuals may address the Council about any item not contained on the regular agenda during the Crookston Forum at the beginning of the meeting.

 

 

 

WAYS & MEANS COMMITTEE TO VIEW PRESENTATION ON DOWNTOWN MASTER PLAN

The Crookston Ways and Means Committee will meet on Monday, July 24, immediately following the City Council meeting in the Conference Room at City Hall. Items on their open agenda include a Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities (CGMC) update by Marty Seifert; a presentation by JLG Architects on the Downtown Master Plan; an update from the Downtown Crookston Development Partnership (DCDP) Economic Vitality Committee; a presentation from Bike Crookston; and review of the 2017 Audit Report.
Ways and Means Committee meetings are open to the public.

 

 

 

COUNCILMAN BAIRD EXPLAINS HIS "NO" VOTE ON GRANT APPLICATION

At the Ways & Means Committee meeting last week, Councilman-at-Large Bobby Baird was one of the two ‘nay’ votes on the grant application for Central Park improvements and increased river access. "There are a few reasons why I feel I did vote against it. I just want to make it clear that I am not against improving anything to help people in town by doing projects like this. The problem I really have with this is taxpayer money going to purchase land out by Gentilly bridge, and the land out at Highway 9 for the canoes and kayaks. I feel that city taxpayer money should not be used for this at all. I do agree with putting some sites downtown, such as Wildwood and Castle Park. I think that’s a good idea; whether it’s for canoeing or fishing with some floating docks. I don’t have a problem with that. Another reason I voted no, is that there were really no figures, no studies or anything that on the usage of Central Park right now. They say there are 24 campsites available; I would have thought that somebody would have brought a study up that showed there are 10-20 campers here in the park every weekend, and we’re getting overcrowded, but nobody brought that up. Why do we want to expand to 48 campsites, when I know darn well that the 24 sites aren’t being used right now? That kind of sends up a red flag, and it does with the taxpayers," he said.

Baird felt that improvements to the Central Park campground need to include installation of a septic system to the campsites. "If you are going to do this right, you ought to put in a septic system to accommodate these campers, along with the water and the proper electricity," he said. "I know there are some smaller campers, pickup campers and tents, but if you are going to get the traffic that they want with the big campers, some of them take a lot of electricity. If you want them to stay a few days in Crookston, they’re not going to mess with setting up and then taking them down to go across the road (to the old arena site) every time they need to dump their sewage. They’ll do that once or twice, and they won’t come back."

Baird clarified that he is not opposed to the grant application itself, but that hidden and unforeseen  project costs could become a taxpayer burden. "The matching grant is a good deal – it’s about a dollar for dollar, and you can’t get a much better deal than that. So it’s not about the grant. I just think there are going to be hidden costs a few years down the road. You’re going to have maintenance, staffing, the safe house to accommodate all the people in 48 campers, and extra police patrols to consider. Those will have to be put into the budget. And what do you do if somebody out in the middle of the river has a heart attack or somebody goes into the river and needs help? There are a lot of things that need to be addressed along with staffing," he said.

 

 

 

MDA extends comment period on proposed nitrogen fertilizer regulation

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) has extended the public comment period for its draft proposal for the use of nitrogen fertilizer in Minnesota. The purpose of the proposed Nitrogen Fertilizer Rule is to minimize the potential for nitrate-nitrogen contamination from fertilizer in the state's groundwater and drinking water. Public comments will now be accepted through Friday, August 25, 2017.
“We’ve heard from farmers, commodity groups, and other leaders in our ag industry that more time is needed for them to weigh in on this proposal,” said MDA Commissioner Dave Frederickson. “We need their input and we’re going to make that extension. We’re also going to hold additional meetings in Northwestern Minnesota at the request of ag leaders and members of the public in that region.”
All comments regarding the proposed rule must be submitted in writing. After consideration of comments received, the MDA expects to publish the final draft of the rule in the fall of 2017. The rule is expected to be adopted in the fall of 2018.
Written comments on the draft Nitrogen Fertilizer Rule should be submitted by Friday August 25, 2017 via mail or email to:

Larry Gunderson
Fertilizer Technical Unit Supervisor
Minnesota Department of Agriculture
625 Robert Street North
St. Paul, MN, 55155-2538
larry.gunderson@state.mn.us

All comments should, but are not required to, include a contact name, phone number and/or email address to provide for follow-up discussion on specific comments.

 

 

 

CITY OF CROOKSTON TO BEGIN SEALCOATING

The City of Crookston will be sealcoating the following streets beginning Tuesday July 25, weather permitting.  They ask that the public park vehicles off street and at least 15 feet from the street. 

STREET                                 FROM                                    TO                               LINEAL FT
Euclid Ave                              Main St                                   Sunflower St                 800
Sampson St                             S Central Av                           Newton Av                    800
Holly Av                                 Houston Av                             Bertha St                      1600
Cromb St                                Holly Av                                 Hunter St                      700
Johnson St                              Woodland Av                          Stuart Av                      300
North Ash St                          4th St                                       6th Street                      700
9th St                                       Stearns St                               Broadway                     300
Van Buren St                          All                                                                                 300
Groveland Av                         905 Groveland                        Cul-de-sac                   1100
   

 

 

 

FRIDAY - JULY 21,  2017

RED LAKE COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE RESPONDS TO SEVERAL INCIDENTS IN THE PAST WEEK

Shortly after midnight on Sunday, July 16, Red Lake County Deputies investigated a report of a stolen vehicle from the city of Plummer.  The vehicle was a purple 2007 Chevrolet HHR.  Later the same morning, Thief River Falls Police Officers located that vehicle in a parking lot in their city.  Tyler Lyle Hanson (32) of Thief River Falls was found sleeping inside the vehicle.  He was arrested and booked for DWI.  On 07/17/17, Pennington County transferred Mr. Hanson into the custody of Red Lake County.  He was transported the jail in Crookston and booked for Felony Motor Vehicle Theft.  He appeared in Court in Red Lake Falls on the morning of 07/19/17 and his case was continued.  He was released from custody on his promise to attend his next scheduled court appearance.  The vehicle was been returned the owner. 

On Monday, July 17, Brooks Cenex reported that they received a counterfeit $100 bill sometime over the past weekend.  Video surveillance showed the transaction with the store clerk and some images of the suspect were posted on the Sheriff’s Office Facebook Page.  In a very short time, several calls about the identity of the suspect came into the Sheriff’s Office.  The suspect also contacted our office and has been cooperating with the investigation.  When this investigation is completed, more information will be released.    

On the evening of Monday, July 17, Red Lake County Deputies responded to a report of a property damage crash that occurred at the intersection of Highway #59 and CR. #1 in Plummer.  It was also reported that one of the involved vehicles left the scene.  A deputy located that vehicle on CR. #5 north of Oklee.  The deputy attempted to stop the suspect vehicle, but it continued to flee, reaching speeds over 100 mph.  The chase went into Pennington County, and a Pennington County Deputy attempted to disable the vehicle with stop sticks.  The suspect vehicle was able to avoid the stop sticks and it went into the Red Lake Indian Reservation and the pursuit was terminated.  Red Lake Tribal Police were able to stop the vehicle and apprehended the suspect.  Edwin Keith Jones (44) of Ponemah was taken into custody and was booked for DWI at the Red Lake Jail.  At the time of this release, Mr. Jones is still in the Red Lake Jail.  He will be released to Red Lake County to face several criminal charges when he’s fulfilled his obligations there.

 

 

 

RIVERVIEW HEALTH RECOGNIZED AS ONE OF MOST WIRED HEATH CARE SYSTEMS

RiverView Health has once again been recognized as one of the nation's Most Wired hospitals and health care systems, according to the results of the 2017 Most Wired survey released in the July issue of Hospitals & Health Networks Magazine.
Technology is making it easier for patients and providers to interact, thus improving communication, safety and patient-provider relationships. New tools are helping patients become more actively involved in their care and maintaining their health, according to the results of the 19th Annual Health Care’s Most Wired survey, released recently by the American
Hospital Association’s (AHA) Health Forum.  “This is, again, a great accomplishment for RiverView Health and it is truly the hard work of the entire organization that made it possible,’’ said Chris Bruggeman, vice president of Operations at RiverView. “Our team has embraced technology as a tool to help provide safe and efficient care.  We continue to learn about better ways to utilize the tools and are constantly making improvements for the benefit of both the users of the technology and patients that it impacts.”
According to the survey, Most Wired hospitals are using smart phones, telehealth and remote monitoring to create more ways for patients to access health care services and capture health information. This year’s results show:
76 percent offer secure messaging with clinicians on mobile devices.

When patients need ongoing monitoring at home, 74 percent use secure e-mails for patients and families to keep in touch with the care team.
68 percent simplify prescription renewals by letting patients make requests on mobile devices.
62 percent add data reported by patients to the electronic health record to get a better picture of what is going on with the patient.
Nearly half of the hospitals are using teleheath to provide behavioral health services to more patients.
40 percent offer virtual physician visits.
More than 40 percent provide real-time care management services to patients at home for diabetes and congestive heart failure.

Innovation in patient care embraces emerging technologies and underscores the need for secure patient information exchange. Hospitals have increased their use of sophisticated information technology monitoring systems to detect patient privacy breaches, monitor for malicious activities or policy violations and provide real-time analysis of security alerts.

The 2017 Most Wired survey and benchmarking study is a leading industry barometer measuring information technology use and adoption among hospitals nationwide. The survey examines how organizations are leveraging information technology to improve performance for value-based health care in the areas of infrastructure, business and administrative management; quality and safety; and clinical integration.

 

 

 

CROOKSTON SCHOOL BOARD LOOKS AT BUILDING OPTIONS FOR BUS GARAGE

The Crookston School Board had the opportunity to tour what has been suggested by a Crookston resident, as an alternative type of building for use as a bus garage. Bob Prudhomme recently addressed the School Board and invited them to see for themselves what a Morton Building had to offer. "Bob came to see the Board, and shared a concern that he felt that the school district definitely needed a bus garage, but that he’d been a victim of what he called ‘sticker shock," said Crookston Schools Superintendent Chris Bates. "He thought that was an awful lot of money. He’s recently put a second building on his property (that the Board looked at,) and certainly we’re very much at the beginning stages; we’re not going to rush out and build anything in the next three weeks or anything. We’re forced to go through all kinds of different processes. But we’ve kind of gone way back to the beginning, and although some of the things that the Morton representative had were good ideas, we’re a million miles away from getting costs or going out for bids on materials, or anything like that, because first of all we have to run a campaign, and we have to get voter approval, so those things may be 18 months to two years down the road.”
Bates said that while a decision to revisit the construction of a new bus garage is quite a ways down the road, he had input from another concerned citizen, who suggested that the School Board work on getting a grassroots support movement started.  “I actually bumped into Allen Dragseth yesterday, and we were talking about getting a grass-roots understanding of what the problem is. I think Allen’s advice was good. I also think this was a very good first step to get a different pair of eyes looking at the problem, and suggesting some things, and I think some of the things that were said made good sense," said Bates. "Construction and building things is not the world that we, as educators, live in. We hear things, we have to ask questions, we have to go to people like architects that are far more knowledgeable than us. I think this was a really good first initiative of the second phase of looking at how could we meet the needs of getting a new bus garage.”

 

 

 

KROX IS WORKING ON A CARE PACKAGE FOR MATT BISHOP

KROX's Matt Bishop is currently battling a rare blood disease.  Matt has beaten cancer twice and after having a bone marrow transplant, he found out he has a rare blood disease.  Matt had to postpone his wedding that was scheduled for August 12 and after a couple tough months, he is starting to feel better and has been improving slowly, but surely.  We thought it would be a good idea to give him a pick me up and we will be sending a care package to him in his hospital room in the Twin Cities.  If you have some cards, small gifts, etc.  You can send it to the address below and we will send everything we receive.   Thank you!
 
KROX Radio
C/O Matt Bishop
PO Box 620
Crookston MN  56716

 

 

 

CRESS Seeks Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses Interested in Partnering on Class Projects

Entrepreneurs and small business owners can receive valuable assistance through an opportunity offered by the Center for Rural Entrepreneurial Studies (CRES) at the University of Minnesota Crookston. CRES is seeking regional entrepreneurs and small business owners interested working with U of M Crookston students on a class project for their business.  Potential projects may include, but are not limited to, marketing and management strategies, business plans, assistance with accounting software, marketing research, competitive analysis, social media marketing, and other projects identified by the client.  All projects are completed by U of M Crookston students under the guidance of qualified faculty at no cost.
Each semester, both spring and fall, CRES integrates projects into courses offered on campus. These projects become an integral part of the course curriculum and are designed to benefit small business owners and entrepreneurs while providing students with real-world business experiences.
Applications for the program are accepted anytime; however, priority is given to applications received prior to the due dates. The 2017 fall semester application deadline is Monday, August 14, 2017. Interested individuals and business can apply for assistance atwww.umccres.org/apply.  All applications are screened by CRES and the projects that best fit the mission of CRES and enhance the learner outcomes for the course will be contacted for a follow-up meeting to determine guidelines, client expectations, and to review other relevant information regarding participation.
For more information about the opportunity, contact Rachel Lundbohm, director of CRES at 218-281-8190 (rlundboh@umn.edu) or visit the CRES Web site at www.umccres.org. The CRES office is located in Dowell Hall 117 on the Crookston campus. The Center for Rural Entrepreneurial Studies assists entrepreneurs in Northwestern Minnesota with the development and creation of their entrepreneurial enterprise. The services offered are based on the client's needs. The mission of CRES is to encourage entrepreneurship through educational leadership, applied research, and insightful consulting. It engages the students, faculty, and research facilities of the University of Minnesota Crookston in order to stimulate the entrepreneurial culture and strengthen the economic vitality of northwest Minnesota.

 

 

 

HOST FAMILIES SOUGHT FOR INTERNATIONAL HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS

Seeking host families for high school aged exchange students (15- 18 years old)  interested in coming to the  area for a half or full school year for 2017-2018. Students come with health insurance and spending money.  Host families provide meals and transportation to/from school (if needed). All you need is a bedroom or even a shared room in your home.
Hosting gives you a chance to make life-long friends, share our culture and learn about other cultures. If you are interested in hosting an international student please contact: Kathy at 218-773-7935, or twites@invisimax.com  Website: http://www.forteexchange.org  Forte International Exchange is a non- profit organization.

 

 

 

PCSD AND CPD TO OFFER SAFETY AWARENESS TRAINING

The Polk County Sheriff’s Department and Crookston Police Department will offer Safety Awareness Training to the public Thursday, July 27 at RiverView Health, 323 S. Minnesota Street, Crookston. The class will consist of basic principals in proactively protecting yourself. The session will include classroom discussion on situation awareness, potential threats and hazards found in any community. Hands on practical exercises on basic self-defense from an unwanted approach or attack will also be shared. Please note: This is not a class or lesson in fighting or martial arts. Class topics will include:
-
Situational awareness and preparedness
- Identifying risks or potential threats
- Being mentally and physically prepared for an unwanted attack
- How to be a good witness
- Police reporting
- Verbal Skills
- Escapes (front and rear attacks)
- Strikes
- Blocks
- Positioning

The session will be held from 6 to 7:30 pm in the Minnesota Room. Please enter through the Rehab Entrance on the south side of the building. The event is free.

 

 

 

 

 

 

THURSDAY - JULY 20,  2017

CROOKSTON PARK BOARD DESIGNATES TWO CITY PROPERTIES AS PARKS

The Crookston Park Board met on Monday night and, with the guidance of Park and Rec Director Scott Riopelle, reviewed a preliminary budget with few significant changes from the 2017 budget, other than $5,000 added for additional tournaments, in support of the activities of the Sports Tourism Committee, and an additional $10,000 added for improvements to the Crookston Sports Center to accommodate a variety of needs for anticipated vendors. Riopelle also showed the Board members a check for $5,000 from American Crystal for the portable basketball floor, which was recently purchased.

At the request of the Crookston Police Department, two additional City properties; one on Sixth Street by the landslide area, and the Riverside Garden and viewing area were designated as City Parks. (Persons found conducting illegal activities in City parks, schools and public housing areas can face more severe charges.)

Riopelle also informed the Board members that a Juniors hockey team, the Norskies, will be playing at the CSC on September 15-16, and have also rented ice time in early March.

Board member Chris Fee brought up the possibility of Crookston hosting the state amateur baseball tournament at a future date. Some improvements would have to be made to the seating and amenities at Karn Field, but Scott Butt, Park and Rec Supervisor, assured Fee that this was something he would look into.

 

 

 

RESEARCHERS AT UMC TO SHOWCASE TRIAL OF ‘LANG-MN’ NEW HARD RED SPRING WHEAT VARIETY

The University of Minnesota recently released a new hard red spring wheat variety called ‘Lang-MN.’ This new variety is well suited for much of the spring wheat-growing region. Lang-MN has yielded equal to the popular varieties Faller and Prosper, but with higher protein. It also quite disease resistant, specifically in regards to scab, stripe and stem rust. You can learn more about it here.
Plots of Lang-MN and competing varieties are being tested at on-farm trials across Minnesota. On July 19th, researchers will be in Crookston at NWROC to showcase the trial. If you are interested in touring the plots or speaking with one of the researchers about this new wheat variety, we would be happy to help you set something up. Feel free to reach out via email with additional questions or interest.

 

 

 

DNA COLLECTION OPPORTUNITY FOR FAMILY MEMBERS OF MISSING PERSONS

The BCA will hold a DNA collection opportunity in Bemidji for family members of missing persons on Wednesday, July 19th from 4:30 – 6:30 p.m. at the  BCA Bemidji Regional Office, 3700 Norris Court NW, Bemidji, MN. Families who have not already done so may provide a DNA sample and information about their missing relative. The resulting DNA profile will be entered into missing person databases for comparison with unidentified remains. Jacob Wetterling Resource Center staff will be on hand to provide family support as needed. To respect their privacy as they go through this very personal process, attendance at this opportunity is limited to families of the missing. There will be no media access during this time.
Family members should bring the following items if available
·         Name of missing family member
·         Date of birth
·         Photos
·         Dental records
·         Items which may contain the missing person’s DNA (toothbrush, hairbrush, etc.)
·         Exact or approximate date and location they went missing

 

 

 

 

WEDNESDAY - JULY 19,  2017

CROOKSTON SCHOOL BOARD EVALUATES SUPERINTENDENT CHRIS BATES

The Crookston School Board recently completed their year=-end evaluation of the Crookston Superintendent of Schools, Chris Bates, and discussed the review at their meeting on Monday evening. The board used a form recommended by the Minnesota School Boards Association which is goal
based. There were four goals that Superintendent Bates was evaluated on:
1. School Climate – Enhancing communications between the District Office and the staff at the three buildings in the school district.
2. Mentoring Program
3.  Long Term Maintenance of the District Buildings
4.  Raising the test scores in the District.

These goals were evaluated by each board member who graded each goal as follows:
4 – Distinguished  (Exceeded School Board expectations)
3 -  Accomplished  (Exceeded School Board expectations)
2 -  Satisfactory  (Exceeded School Board expectations)
1 -  Unsatisfactory  (Did not meet School Board expectations)

After collecting the six board members responses, the board gave Bates a rating of 2.7 out of four. “The Superintendent’s strong point according to the board members was 3.5 for the long term maintenance of the District buildings. Even with a new bus garage failing in a referendum, the board has been extremely happy in this department,” said Crookston School Board Chair Frank Fee. “The school board was disappointed that a new mentoring program for new teachers and other staff that could benefit from a mentorship was not introduced during the past school year. The total accumulation for the mentoring program was 1.9. The Superintendent has acknowledged to the board that it will go into effect the first month of the 2017-2018 school year. The other two goals, school climate and test scores were near the satisfactory level with both being an ongoing process.  All-in-all, he came out pretty good in the evaluation.”

The school board reluctantly accepted the retirement of Pirate Boys Tennis Coach Mike Geffre after his 32 years of service as head coach.  “I think Mr. Geffre has put in his time to say the least,” said Fee.  “32 years of coaching boys tennis, all the records he has accomplished as a head coach and all the players and state champions with the doubles teams of Jake Olson and Troy Kleven twice, and Liz Ames and Katie Hunt.  He has improved kids, not only as tennis players, but human beings.  He will be missed.”

The board approved the hire of Gina Gunderson as ECFE Parent Educator at Washington Elementary School.  They also approved a grant of $1,700 from the Northwest Minnesota Foundation, which will go towards the salary of Gunderson.

The board approved a two year leave of absence from Amber Sannes after waiving the 12 week notification required according to the contract.

The board approved all the financial designations, including the Official Financial Institutions: Payroll Account – Northern Sky Bank, Financial and Lock Box Account – Bremer Bank.
The investment authority will be Superintendent Chris Bates, Business Manager Laura Lyczewski, and Fiscal Services Director Nancy Nottestad.
The official signatories for financial operations are School Board Chair Frank Fee, School Board Clerk Adrianne Winger, School Board Treasurer Tim Dufault, Chris Bates, Laura Lyczewski and Nancy Nottestad.
The official signatories for the Crookston High School Activity fund – Principal Eric Bubna, CHS Administrative Assistant Robin Reitmeier, Nancy Nottestad, and Laura Lyczewski.
The official signatories for the Highland Elementary School Activity Fund – Principal Chris Trostad, Highland School Administrative Assistant Jana Hodgson, Nancy Nottestad, and Laura Lyczewski.
The last piece of approval was to designate Chris Bates and Laura Lyczewski to lease, purchase, and contract for budgeted goods and services.

The next Crookston School Board meeting is scheduled for Monday, August 14 at 5:00 p.m. at the Crookston High School Choir/Orchestra room.

The board will hold a working session tonight (Wednesday) at 5:00 p.m. at the Bob Prudhomme residence at 1720 South Front Street in Crookston to discuss possible bus garage options.  No action will be taken at the meeting.

 

 

POLK COUNTY LICENSE CENTER TO HAVE LIMITED SERVICES JULY 20, 21 AND 24

The Polk County License Center located at the Taxpayer Service Center in the Government Building at 612 North Broadway in Crookston will have limited services on July 20, 21, and 24. Motor vehicle titles, plate replacement and registration (tab) renewal services will NOT be available Thursday, July 20 through Monday, July 24 because of a computer system replacement.
Regular motor vehicle services will resume on Tuesday, July 25. Please allow for extra time for an office visit as everyone adjusts to the new system.  Driver’s license, permit or identification card renewals WILL be available. DNR services WILL be available. Polk County License Center hours are Monday - Friday from 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

 

 

 

RIVERVIEW FOUNDATION RECEIVES DONATION FROM WAL-MART

The RiverView Foundation recently received a donation from the Wal-Mart Community Grant Program as seed money to support the Foundation’s RiverView Care Center TV Project. The project includes the purchase of new flat screen TVs and wall mounts for RiverView’s Memory Care Unit. “We believe that RiverView Health is providing critical healthcare services to our community,’’ said Crookston Wal-Mart Manager David Olson. “Wal-Mart, its employees and customers, understand the importance of local healthcare in our community and we are committed to lending our support by giving back and investing in the health and wellness of our region.’’’
The project will allow for Care Center residents to have televisions with closed caption capabilities, the ability to stream Netflix movies for a wider variety of viewing options, and the capability to watch from anywhere in the room as the new units will have full motion tilt and swivel capabilities. “Donor support, like that of Wal-Mart, is so powerful,’’ said Foundation Director Kent Bruun. “It literally allows us to enhance our quality of care which results in a community and environment that has a higher quality of life and safety.’’
Specifically, Bruun looks forward to the difference the new Smart TVs will make for residents of RiverView’s Care Center. “Movies make for great memories,’’ Bruun stated. “When seniors or residents with Alzheimer’s watch a favorite movie or television show, it can stir positive memories and inspire good feelings about the caregivers and loved ones in their lives. We often associate a TV show or movie with the good times in our lives. For people with Alzheimer’s, those links between certain movies and memories are not necessarily lost. In fact, movies can help bring back some of the best memories, inspire emotion and even spark conversation. Whether they like black and white films, westerns, musicals or another genre, seniors with Alzheimer’s can benefit from watching movies and TV shows as a regular activity.’’
For more information regarding a donation to the Care Center TV Project, contact Bruun at 218-281-9249 or kbruun@riverviewhealth.org.


Crookston Wal-Mart Manager David Olson (center, left) and several of the Crookston Wal-Mart team members present Foundation Director Kent Bruun (center, right) with a check toward the Foundation’s RiverView Care Center TV Project.

 

 
 FOR THE OBITUARY PAGE  CLICK HERE

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