4-24-13 Chronicle A-Section

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Snow woes
Weather impacts golf courses
— Page 1B
GSL spring play May 2-5
— Page 8
The McLeod County
hronicle C
By Lori Copler Staff Writer It appears the majority of the Glencoe-Silver Lake (GSL) School Board will support another try at a building bond referendum, probably late this fall. The School Board met in a work session Monday night and, while no formal decision was made, it looks as if it it will resurrect its proposed addition to Lincoln Junior High for a November or December vote. The goal of that project is to close the Helen Baker Elementary School in Glencoe and move those children to the new addition. Superintendent Chris Sonju said that while an ECFE/ECSE facility planned to be built this year will help free up space at Helen Baker, that building continues to have safety, technological and other issues. The new ECFE building “buys us a year or two, depending on kindergarten classes coming in,” said Sonju. But when it comes to long-term planning, “we don’t have that building (Helen Baker) in our future.” Michelle Sander, business manager, said the building bond issue also needs to be discussed because it impacts other planned improvements to the district’s school buildings. “A lot of things are hinging on our next steps,” said Sander. For example, Sander said, a “link” door between the school and the Panther Field House needs to be replaced, with an estimated price tag of $5,000. If that door is replaced now, and the school goes through with its planned addition, “we’re throwing that $5,000 away.”
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www.glencoenews.com • Wednesday, April 24, 2013 • Glencoe, Minnesota Vol. 116 No. 17
GSL talks possible fall building bond vote at work session
School board members indicated that they would like to stick close to a $17.6 million proposal that failed by a 298-vote margin in April 2012, 1,741-1,443. There will be a few “tweaks,” the most major of which is the removal of the ECFE/ECSE space, because that is being built this year in a separate project. Sander and Sonju also indicated that there may be some rearrangement of grade levels in the new addition to create a greater separation between the elementary and junior high segments. Sonju also proposed adding some improvements to the Lakeside building in Silver Lake “to continue to say that this building is a part of our plans for a very, very long time.” One of the concerns in past votes, the administrators indicated, is that Silver Lake voters may have perceived the closing of Helen Baker and an addition to the junior/senior high school site as a first step in consolidating all of the district’s students at a central location in Glencoe. Board Chair Clark Christianson indicated that it is time for the board to decide between maintaining the status quo or building for the future. “Is the status quo what we want for the next 20 years?” Christianson asked. And Christianson’s opinion is that the status quo is not what will be best for the district, especially if it wants to retain its students. Christianson pointed to other
Chronicle photo by Alyssa Schauer
2013 GSL prom: ‘Mardi Gras’
Christian Eidan and Alisha Cadena were among the many couples who attended the annual GSL prom Saturday, which had a Mardi Gras theme. The couples promenaded for friends and family in a “grand march” Saturday afternoon before going on to other activities, including dinner, a dance and after-prom activities. More prom photos can be found on the back page of the B Section of the Chronicle.
Building
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Nelson brings enthusiasm, experience to Chamber
By Lori Copler Staff Writer David Nelson has brought two great assets to his new job as the president of the Glencoe Area Chamber of Commerce. First, his enthusiasm for the community knows no bounds. Second, Nelson’s background in economic development is tailor-made for his new position. While Glencoe may not be familiar with Nelson, he is certainly familiar with Glencoe. Nelson was employed as an Extension educator with the University of Minnesota for about 15 years, specializing in business retention and expansion for economic development agencies, providing skills to frontline employees and analysis of retail and industrial trends. Glencoe was part of the area Nelson served as an educator, and worked with the city of Glencoe on retail trade analysis and market studies. That was how he learned about Glencoe, and Nelson “liked what I saw here.” So when the president’s job for the chamber opened, Nelson applied. Glencoe, Nelson will say, has a little of everything, from “a stellar industrial employee base” that’s diversified — with ag-based businesses such as Seneca and Miller Manufacturing to medical-device producers such as Starkey Labs — to a brisk retail sector to customer- and client-based services. “Glencoe’s got it and I like it,” said Nelson. He prefers to refer to Glencoe as a small city rather than a small town, with a robust school system, a diversified medical hospital which, even with just 25 beds, offers a Level III trauma center, assisted-living units and a long-term care unit, as well as a birthing center, and a variety of community activities. It offers most of the amenities, without being too large, perfect for those with rural roots. “I’m not an urban sprawl kind of guy,” said Nelson. One of Nelson’s goals is to help encourage community pride in Glencoe, because he thinks the town has earned it. Without trying to sound too corny, Nelson said Glencoe is the kind of town where “you can go to work in the morning with a smile on your face, come home in the evening to mow your yard and plant flowers, then head to the ball park to take in a Legion baseball game.” ***** Nelson started his job on April 1 (“no fooling,” he said) and was pleased to come into a position that already has a work plan in place. “I’d say the first six months of my job should be to take the baton that was handed to me and run with it,” said Nelson. The work plan is in its third year, which is the typical life span of any plan, said Nelson. Later this fall, he and the Chamber members will begin reviewing and revamping the plan to take on new goals and dreams. One of his goals is to bring the Chamber to businesses, instead of expecting business owners to leave their businesses to attend Chamber meetings and events. “Some people think our members have become apathetic, but I don’t think that’s true,” said Nelson, who notes that 160 members pay significant dues to belong to the Chamber of Commerce. “I just don’t think, in these economic times, they can leave their businesses for significant amounts of time.” Nelson also hopes to offer leadership training, perhaps through the Blandin Foundation, as well as, perhaps, a youth entrepreneurship program. “I think our members will find value in belonging to this organization,” said Nelson. ***** Nelson and his wife, Sue, a hospital pharmacist in Mankato, are “empty nesters” with a 29-year-old son who is a mechanical engineer in Houston, Texas. A native of North Dakota, Nelson farmed with his brother for 10 years before moving into the economic
Chronicle photo by Lori Copler
Nelson
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David Nelson started as the new president of the Glencoe Area Chamber of Commerce on April 1, bringing enthusiasm and economic development skills to his new job. Nelson spends about 70 percent of his time on Chamber business, the city has a contract with the Chamber for 30 percent of Nelson’s time, which is spent on retail, service and industrial economic development efforts.
Weather
Wed., 4-24 H: 39º, L: 24º Thur., 4-25 H: 45º, L: 28º Fri., 4-26 H: 63º, L: 44º Sat., 4-27 H: 67º, L: 48º Sun., 4-28 H: 70º, L: 50º
Looking back: Surprise, 11.6 inches of snow and .76 inch of rain last week! Where’s spring? Date Hi Lo Rain April 16 47 ......30 ..........0.00 April 17 39 ......32 ........0.10* April 18 32 ......29 ..........Tr.*
April 19 April 20 April 21 April 22
40 43 49 40
......27 .......0.00* ......17 ..........0.00 ......32 ..........0.12 ......29 ........0.14*
Chronicle News and Advertising Deadlines
All news is due by 5 p.m., Monday, and all advertising is due by noon, Monday. News received after that deadline will be published as space allows.
* Snow: .1 on 4/17, 4 on 4/18, 6 on 4/19, 1.5 on 4/22. Temperatures and precipitation compiled by Robert Thurn, Chronicle weather observer.
The McLeod County Chronicle, www.glencoenews.com, Wednesday, April 24, 2013, page 2
Happenings
Kids Against Hunger event
All Thrivent members are reminded to “Join Hands” and package meals for Kids Against Hunger on Wednesday, May 1. Two shifts are available — 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. — at Cactus Jacks II in Stewart. Participants form an assembly line packaging a meal of rice/dried vegetables casserole. “This is a fun, easy and very rewarding experience!” said Cindy Eggersgluess of the McLeod Chapter of Thrivent Financial For Lutherans. Participants also are asked to bring an item to donate to the McLeod Emergency Food Shelf. For more information, contact 320-238-2148.
‘12 Angry Jurors’ set May 10-12
The Buffalo Lake-Hector/Stewart (BLHS) Theater Department will present one of America’s best courtroom dramas, “12 Angry Jurors,” at the Place Theater in downtown Hector on Friday and Saturday, May 10-11, at 7 p.m., and on Sunday, May 12, at 2 p.m. A young man’s life hangs in the balance, and the jury seems to think that the case is an open-and-shut one; all but one, that is. It takes a great deal of courage to stand alone. Tickets are sold at the door. For more information, call Matthew Pursi at 320-848-2233, extension 322.
Scouts to collect food items
The Glencoe Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts are teaming up to collect food for the McLeod Emergency Food Shelf Saturday, April 27. Please place non-perishable food items in a bag and place it outside on the doorstep by 9 a.m. Saturday for the Scouts to pick up. This includes the cities of Glencoe, Silver Lake, Brownton, Plato and Biscay. If you are missed during the pick-up, please drop your donation off at the McLeod Emergency Food Shelf, 808 12th St., Glencoe).
Lake meeting rescheduled
Because of the weather, the meeting of the Lake Marion Improvement Association set for Thursday, April 18, has been rescheduled to Thursday, April 25, at 6:30 p.m., at the Brownton Rod and Gun Club, located on the south bay of the lake. For more information, call 320-3289911.
Girl Scouts registration set
Area Girl Scouts will have a “root beer float” registration at Oak Leaf Park in Glencoe on Tuesday, May 7, from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Girls who are currently in Girl Scouts, as well as those who may be interested in joining, are encouraged to attend with a parent. There will be registration forms available as well as information on troops, camps and other activities. Everyone who registers will receive a special patch. Adults who are interested in volunteering are also encouraged to attend. Those who are unable to attend but who are interested in registering, volunteering or getting more information, are welcome to call Gerri Fitzloff at 320-562-2369.
Legion Council set to meet
The McLeod County Council of the American Legion and Auxiliary will meet Tuesday, April 30, at 7:30 p.m., at Winsted Post 407 with the Winsted post serving as the host.
By Lori Copler Staff Writer The McLeod County Board of Commissioners didn’t hear a lot of comments on its proposed “social host” ordinance at a public hearing April 16, but it didn’t adopt it, either. Although no one seems to be opposed to the ordinance, the County Board wants to bring the proposed ordinance up during its student government day, set for Tuesday, April 30, seeing it as an issue that will engage discussion with the high school students who will be in attendance. Commissioner Sheldon Nies asked proponents of the ordinance to review why they were proposing it. Michelle Barley, a public defender, said that there “are gaps in the present law that do not cover certain situations in underage drinking.” Businesses that sell liquor to minors can face civil fines, and employees who sell can be charged criminally. Adults who buy liquor for minors can also be charged. However, said Barley, there are situations in which a person “hosts” an underage drinking party at a residence. If even those persons are not actually providing liquor to minors, but do nothing to stop underage drinking when they are aware of it, can be held liable under the social host ordinance, Barley said. Commissioner Jon Christensen asked about a provision in the proposed ordinance that allows a person to be charged if “they know or should reasonably know” that underage drinking is taking place. Christensen asked for an example of “reasonably” knowing that it is happening. Barley cited a recent situation in which one minor was passed out in a hallway and another was “puking in the toilet,” but the host denied knowing there was drinking taking place. But parents who go somewhere for a weekend and return to find that a party had taken place while they were
absent would not be held to that “reasonably know” standard. “However, whoever was hosting the party — their child or whoever — could be charged,” said Barley. The County Board will take up the ordinance again at its April 30 meeting. In other business April 16, the County Board: • Received a tentative schedule for the construction of a new highway maintenance shed to serve the Silver Lake and Lester Prairie area, which will be located on the southwest corner of the Highway 7-County Road 15 intersection east of Silver Lake. John Brunkhorst, county highway engineer, said that while the County Board has committed to the approximately $1.2 million project, it has yet to determine from where funding will come. Nies said the funding source will be a topic for the county’s budget committee. The proposed shop is set to go before the Planning Advisory Committee today (Wednesday) as it will need a conditional use permit. Once that is obtained, the project will move on to final design, bid letting and construction. • Approved a permit for large assemblies for the annual Winstock Country Music Festival. Tom Ollig, one of the organizers, said Winstock is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, and is expecting a daily attendance of about 18,000, which is a record number for the June 68 festival. • Entered into an agreement with the Department of Natural Resources for the administration of a $4,466 grant to help fund the sheriff’s office water patrol. • Entered into a contract with Central Applicators, Inc., of Foley to spray ditches for weeds and brush and to treat the remaining stumps.
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Bar Bingo set for April 27
The Glencoe Lions Club will sponsor bar Bingo at the Glencoe Country Club Saturday, April 27, at 2 p.m. Everyone age 18 and over is welcome to play for cash prizes. The progressive game pay-out amount is up to $1,199. Food and beverages are available.
Building Continued from page 1
school districts, such as Maple Lake and Howard L a k e - Wa v e r l y - Wi n s t e d , which have recently completed building projects. “They’re not Taj Mahals, but they serve the purpose,” said Christianson. The Helen Baker building, Christianson said, “is a difficult sell on a first-appearance standard,” because of its age and crowded conditions. But the School Board’s newest member, Donna VonBerge, questioned the affordability of the project for taxpayers. Those who voted against the two previous bond questions weren’t against better buildings, VonBerge said. “It’s not at all that we don’t want a better school,” said VonBerge, “it’s that we can’t afford it, whether we need it or deserve it.” Board Member Kevin Kuester asked if the district “can afford not to” improve its facilities, particularly with 400 children open enrolling to other districts. Board Member Ann Twiss agreed, saying that many open enroll to other districts after seeing the Helen Baker building. “They want facilities that are bigger, brighter and have more room to move around,” said Twiss. Sonju said the Board, in previous proposals, tried hard to find a balance between what the school district needs and what taxpayers can afford, which is why the district came up with a proposal for an addition rather than a whole new building. The closeness of the last vote, Sonju said, indicated that there is community support for a project. Twiss added that the proposed project is “really well reasoned and efficient, and I support this 100 percent.” The administrators indicated that the issue will be further discussed in future work and regular business sessions. In other business, Sander reported that the proposed ECFE/ECSE project is moving along, and should be ready for occupancy by the end of December, as planned.
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Health board meeting reset
The regularly scheduled quarterly meeting of the Meeker-McLeod-Sibley Community Health Board had to be rescheduled because of inclement weather. The rescheduled meeting is set for Thursday, April 25, at 9 a.m., in the large meeting room at the McLeod County Solid Waste Management Facility, 1065 Fifth Ave. SE, Hutchinson. The meeting is open to the public.
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Salad luncheon set at St. Pius
The St. Pius X Council of Catholic Women (CCW) will host a spring luncheon, “A Walk in the Garden,” Thursday, May 2, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., at the St. Pius X School gym and cafeteria. A variety of salads and desserts will be served, and attendees will receive a takehome party favor. Take-outs are available for delivery by calling 320-864-5162.
County Road Ditch Spraying
Sibley County will ONLY be spraying County road ditches for noxious weeds. The spray is applied directly to the noxious weeds. Chemicals used: Tordon K, Transline, Escort, Milestone, Forefront and 2-4D. Anyone wishing to NOT have a specific county road ditch sprayed should contact the Sibley County Public Works Office at 507-237-4092 before May 15, 2013 for a form. The No Spray Request Form is available from the Office via: e-mail: SibleyPW@co.sibley.mn.us or website: www.co.sibley.mn.us Landowners/renters are required to flag the no spray zone with “Owner Will Maintain” flags provided by Sibley County Public Works. The use of these flags will aid Sibley County Public Works maintenance crews in identifying which areas landowners/ renters do not want sprayed. Flags are available at the Public Works office in Gaylord and at all county highway garages in Arlington, Gaylord, Gibbon, Green Isle, Henderson, Winthrop and at the Sibley County Gravel Pit. By requesting that Sibley County does not spray your road ditch, landowners/renters agree to maintain the noxious weeds and brush in the specified road ditches in their entirety. When landowners/renters do not respond, we will assume it is acceptable to spray. The County may begin spraying on or after May 15, 2013.
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Garden plots now available
The Glencoe community garden project organizers are again leasing plots on the 14th Street site across from Kestral Apartments near Panther Heights. The available plots are 10-by-10 feet, 10-by-15 feet and 10-by-20 feet in size. For information, call 612-308-1503. To be included in this column, items for Happenings must be received in the Chronicle office no later than 5 p.m. on Monday of the week they are to be published. Items received after that will be published elsewhere in the newspaper as space permits. Happenings in Glencoe, Brownton, Stewart, Plato, New Auburn, Biscay and Silver Lake take priority over happenings elsewhere.
2013 DUST CONTROL NOTICE
• Offered to Sibley County residents on gravel surfaced public roads. • Cost is $105.00 per 100 feet of treatment for 2 applications and must be paid in advance. • Dust control has been effectively used by the County in the past. However, the County makes no guarantee as to the effectiveness of the material used or how long it will last. • First application will be done approximately first week of June. Residents need to accurately measure and flag the application area with orange flags on both ends at the edge of the road. Maintain these flags the 2 weeks before each application until completed. Flags are available at the Public Works Office in Gaylord, all county highway garages in Arlington, Gaylord, Gibbon, Green Isle, Henderson, Winthrop and the County Gravel Pit. • Applicants will not be notified of the application date unless you provide email address – or please call our office at 507-237-4092 or look for updates at www.co.sibley.mn.us . • Applications must be received by May 15, 2013. Sign up online by visiting www.co.sibley.mn.us/public_works/dust_control.html, in person at the Sibley County Service Center Building or by mailing this sheet filled in with all the information below. • A late fee surcharge of $25.00 will be assessed to individuals who sign up after May 15th.
Nelson Continued from page 1
and community development sector. He was a community development officer in Detroit Lakes, a develop specialist with the Minnesota Department of Trade and Economic Development, a manager and vice president of the North Dakota Future Fund, executive director of the Southwest Initiative Fund, executive director of Renville County Economic Development, an Extension educator and most recently had his own business development start-up consulting service. Nelson said he recently bought a home in Glencoe, although the couple also intends to keep their home in Cleveland while Sue Nelson retains her job in Mankato. “We’re becoming vested in the community,” Nelson said of buying his second home. “I think that’s really important. Whether it’s writing a grant or flipping burgers at Glencoe days, I think it’s important to be involved.”
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