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County Board approves historical society funding on split vote

On a 3-2 vote Tuesday, the McLeod County Board of Commissioners approved continued funding for a historical community outreach position.
The position actually began last year, and the board had approved about $6,700 to fund the outreach coordinator through the end of 2016, with the stipulation that a “punch list” of items be evaluated before it considered continued funding for the program.
The coordinator position helps communities and historical groups in the county accomplish their historic preservation goals.
Commissioner Doug Krueger, who cast one of the two dissenting votes for an additional $28,602 for the McLeod County Historical Society to help cover the cost of the outreach coordinator, had three main points of contention:
• The increase would represent a 49 percent increase in the historical society’s budget.
• That he felt the historical society was not “an essential service,” although he did express appreciation for the work it does.
• And he felt that although the position would help leverage Legacy grant funding, it also costs money to get those funds.
“The Legacy fund was supposed to make things easier; instead, it just makes it harder,” said Krueger. He contended that trying to tap into the Legacy fund cost applicants money for administration for applications and then spending any grant money received. Adminstration costs are not covered by Legacy grant money.
Commissioner Paul Wright said he didn’t disagree with Krueger regarding the Legacy fund. In fact, he said, he voted against the amendment that established it.

For the full story, see the Jan. 18 edition of The McLeod County Chronicle.