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The federal government giveth and the federal government taketh away. With one hand the Trump administration approved $323 million for two years of an innovative Minnesota plan for a high-risk health insurance pool, designed to lower individual premiums by about 20 percent (compared to what premiums would be without it) for MNsure, the state's version of the Affordable Care Act. But with the other hand it stripped away $369 million in funding for MinnesotaCare, an entirely different program which serves 91,000 people often described as the working poor.
The Becker County Historical Society is planning for a possible $6 million addition to the Detroit Lakes Community Center that would house the Becker County Museum. The funding would involve about $1.1 million from the county, $1.2 million in tax credits, and $1.1 million existing pledges, leaving some $3 million to be collected through a capital campaign, Becker County Commissioner Ben Grimsley said at a County Board meeting Tuesday.
A Detroit Lakes Navy veteran is making good progress on bringing his rental home up to code by a city-imposed Dec. 31 deadline. "I've got to paint the trim, basically that's all that's left," said Brian Fraser, who lives at 327 Elizabeth Avenue. He said the property's owner, Laurel Carlson, is also making good progress on upgrades needed in a separate rental unit in the basement of her home at 325 Elizabeth Street. Fraser's home, which has its own address, is located in Carlson's back yard and opens onto the alley.
Say goodbye to Airport Road. It's closing for good on Oct. 9. It will be missed: In the summertime, as many as 4,000 cars a day use the shaky, curving back road to the big box stores on Highway 10. Construction is going to start on a new taxiway and runway relocation and extension project at the airport that will cut through Airport Road. Hough Inc. of Detroit Lakes is the main contractor for the project and will began earthwork on Oct. 9, said Detroit lakes Public Works Director Brad Green.
A $2.8 million bridge replacement project over the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad tracks in Lake Park will be paid for mostly by the state and the railroad. The railroad tracks run through a deep east-west cutting in Lake Park, splitting the town in two. The bridge is on the main north-south street from Highway 10 to downtown. BNSF will pay $1.2 million towards the project, and state bonding funds will pay just over $1 million more.
A rural Waubun man, charged with three felonies in Becker County District Court for allegedly causing the death of three horses under his care through neglect and starvation, is set to go to a plea hearing Oct. 10. Michael Erwin Dahl, 42, faces three charges of mistreatment-torture of animals. A jury trial that was set for Sept. 19 was canceled, and the plea hearing was set up in its place.
The Humane Society of the Lakes in Detroit Lakes has opened its doors to dogs from Texas, opening up some room at Texas animal shelters for pets separated from their owners by the Hurricane Harvey disaster that flooded large parts of Houston and other Texas communities. "They're trying to open up the shelters down there a little bit for hurricane dogs in hopes they will be reclaimed by their homes," said local Humane Society Manager Amber Sund. "Our facility took in seven dogs on Friday. They transported over 100 dogs to be distributed (to animal shelters) in Minnesota."
Score a win for Brian Winczewski, who lives next door to the Osage Sportman's Club and has successfully challenged the decision of the Becker County Board to grant the club a conditional use permit. It's not clear how the county will respond. No decision was made by the county board after it met in closed sessions with its legal team on Tuesday, said County Administrator Jack Ingstad, although county staff did tour the Sportsman's Club site with the county's attorney after the meeting.
A Moorhead woman has been sentenced in Becker County District Court for stealing more than $1,000 worth of merchandise from JC Penney in Detroit Lakes. Alexis Beryl Phillips, 30, of Moorhead, was sentenced Sept. 1 for felony theft. According to court records, at 2:41 p.m. on July 1, police responded to the report of a shoplifter at Central Market. Phillips was caught after she ran to the nearby McKinley Plaza and tried to hide in a business that was under construction. She shoplifted items valued at $127.
Detroit Lakes city officials were taken by surprise when Zorbaz canceled its live music indefinitely after being sanctioned for violating the noise ordinance. "It's untrue that the city told Zorbaz it can't have live music anymore," said City Administrator Kelcey Klemm, in response to Internet rumors and petitions.