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Forming citizen commissions can mean a great deal of relief for a city council, but it can also bring a great many headaches as well. Cities representatives from around the area gathered Wednesday afternoon and evening to discuss timely issues with the League of Minnesota Cities. Issues included the 2007 legislative session, citizen commissions, open meeting laws, pandemic flu preparations and working together as cities. Attorney Scott Kelly spoke on behalf of the League of Minnesota Cities about citizen commissions, including the positives and the negatives.
Sarah Panzau uses humor to speak to teens about a topic very un-humorous -- drunk driving. On Aug. 23, 2003, Panzau went out for a night of drinking only to nearly kill herself in a one-car accident. The resulting list of medical ailments was two pages long.
After roughly an hour of public testimony opposing the county building a parking lot in the Berean Church space, the Detroit Lakes Planning Commission denied the county's request for a waiver of parking space requirements and a conditional use permit to have a parking lot in a residential district. Last year the county came before the planning commission -- and ultimately the city council -- to request a waiver to only require 100 parking spaces for its 48,000-square-foot addition to the courthouse.
The city of Detroit Lakes is looking for some financial help for a convention center and an extension of the Heartland Trail, and they're looking to state funding for a portion of it. Several Minnesota senators -- including DFLer Keith Langseth, chair of the Senate Capital Investment Committee -- stopped in Detroit Lakes Thursday morning to hear presentations on why Detroit Lakes needs funding for these projects.
The stars aligned in White Earth this week. Circle of Life teacher Wendy Harstad was awarded the Minnesota No Child Left Behind 2007 American Star of Teaching. "Just watching students come in (to the gymnasium), I could notice a sense of community," Tracy Mulvenon said. She traveled from Washington, D.C., as a representative from the U.S. Department of Education to award Harstad the honor. Only one teacher from every state is being given the honor, and Harstad represents Minnesota.
Emily Steinle is only 14 but she's already attended at least 12 funerals since 1999. There have been friends, family and friends close enough to be family. "It's just weird," she said of the amount of funerals she's attend thus far. "It's just something I grew up with.
The Minnesota State Community and Technical College, Detroit Lakes, is offering students a bump up in their education. MSCTC has partnered with Southwest Minnesota State University, Marshall, to offer a Bachelor of Applied Science degree in management.
They say an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Well, not this doctor. Chiropractor David Gottenborg's interest in apple production has grown to the point that this year he is selling his apples in Audubon, and business is delicious. Gottenborg Apple Orchard started as a hobby and has grown by sizeable proportions. Seven years ago Gottenborg met with Art Disse, owner of an apple orchard along Highway 34, to discuss apples. Gottenborg was interested. "I thought, 'I could do this,'" Gottenborg said.
Although it was a nice change of pace, it was an unfortunate incident that brought about that change. Detroit Lakes Public Works workers Bryan Sandberg and Kevin Larson spent two days in Northwood, N.D., helping clean up after a tornado ripped through the town. Public Works Director Brad Green said Mayor Larry Buboltz suggested sending someone from the city because Northwood had the equipment, but no one to operate it. The city council agreed to send Sandberg and Larson -- and pay them to go -- to "be good neighbors," Green said.
The Detroit Lakes Development Authority is moving forward to acquire the land north of Holmes Street in the redevelopment area -- the Burger Time and former laundromat area. Basically the city has two options regarding the property. One would be to wait for a developer to come along and buy up the property or develop around it, and the second would be to acquire the land in preparation for development.