County board acts on department recommendations

By LORAE VARDAS
Correspondent
 The County Board at Tuesday’s meeting passed three resolutions presented by Steve Backowski, public works director.  The first was to relinquish a portion of CSAH 13 in the Little Elk bridge area, giving it back to affected property owners.
 The second called for installation of a stop sign at the junction of CSAH 31 and 200th Street near the Todd County line that had been controlled with a yield sign.  For safety reasons, a stop sign is more appropriate for west bound traffic on 200th Street.
 The third resolution advises the Minnesota Department of Transportation of rural transportation needs as the state considers new internal funding formulas for distribution of federal money to districts.  Traditionally, more dollars are earmarked for metro areas.  “City people use rural roads extensively on weekends and the state should be aware of that,” commented Commissioner Gene Young.  The board is asking that the Commissioner of Transportation use current data and recognize the importance of rural roads in setting policy, planning and ranking projects and new project development.
 In other agenda items Tuesday, the County Board:
 • On recommendation of Kirsten Hoese, entered into an agreement between Morrison County Public Health and the Little Falls School District allowing Public Health to use the District’s physical facilities and buildings as a mass dispensing site/clinic in emergency situations for the prevention and control of communicable diseases;
 • Accepted the resignation of an employee in the County Attorney’s Office and authorized County Attorney Conrad Freeberg to hire a replacement.  This is the third resignation in the past year, reported Freeberg, indicating employees are “moving on to bigger and better things,”  including a recent judgeship appointment;
 • On recommendation of County Auditor Russ Nygren, approved a prorated liquor license refund in the amount of $1,425 to Aqua Range and Bar doing business as Full Throttle Saloon, which has closed at the Camp Ripley junction;
 • Adopted the Morrison County Hazard Mitigation Plan and authorized Region 5 Rural Development Commission to submit the plan to FEMA and all local units of government for approval.  The Federal Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000 and FEMA require communities to adopt mitigation plans in order to expedite federal funding in case of disaster.  Spokesman Chuck Forss said no changes  were made after the recent public hearing and that the state may use the plan as a model of other counties.  Funded by a grant, the mitigation plan now becomes part of Morrison County’s updated comprehensive plan; and
 • Heard Carol Anderson, community development director, report that she has been working with the City of Upsala on a Jobz designation for two companies wanting to open there.  A new industry is interested in locating in Little Falls and an established business has been helped by the Small Business Development Center at Central Lakes College.

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