News

Fri
09
Jan

Wright County Board bids farewell to Karla Heeter

Although there was a thin schedule of agenda items at the Dec. 30 meeting of the Wright County Board of Commissioners, it wasn't without an important moment, as the board said goodbye to one of its own.

Commissioner Karla Heeter, who spent six years as a county commissioner, sat through her last county board meeting. Earlier in the year, Heeter accepted a position as executive director of the Buffalo Hospital Foundation and decided not to run for re-election.

Heeter was recognized for her service to the county and she highlighted some of her accomplishments that she is proudest of, including her work spearheading the M.E.A.D.A. group that fought the spread of methamphetamine in Wright County, her work on the 800 Megahertz communication system at the Law Enforcement Center and working to preserve pristine land around Pelican Lake and the Bertram Chain of Lakes Area.

Fri
09
Jan

New city officials take office at council meeting

It was the biggest change in Maple Lake city government in 14 years as a new mayor and a new council member were among the three elected officials taking the oath of office at the first Maple Lake City Council meeting of 2009.

Sworn in at the January 6 meeting were Mayor Mike O'Loughlin, incumbent council member John Northenscold and new council member Lynn Kissock.

O'Loughlin defeated former Mayor Mike Messina and write-in candidate Deb Geyen in a close election last November, with those results confirmed in a recount conducted at the Wright County Courthouse.

O'Loughlin is a former council member, defeating incumbent council member Shar Dircks for a four-year council term by one vote in 1998. Dircks won a rematch in 2002 and reclaimed the seat. O'Loughlin lost a close election for a council seat in 2004 to Northenscold and Judy Kelly.

Wed
31
Dec

Filing open for township offices

Filings for area township offices opened on Tuesday, Dec. 30, in preparation for annual meetings and elections which will take place on Tuesday, March 10. Filing will close on January 13 at 5 p.m. There is also a $2 filing fee. Candidates who file for the March election have until 5 p.m. on January 15 to withdraw from filing. Offices up for election are:

Albion Township

One supervisor for a three-year term and one treasurer for a two-year term.

Filings will be received at Clerk Debbie Uecker's home at 2235 County Road 6 NW, Annandale.

Chatham Township

One supervisor for a three-year term and one treasurer for a two-year term. Candidates may file by contacting the office of Clerk Francis Munsterteiger at 763-682-6151.

Corinna Township

One supervisor for a three-year term. Candidates may file at Clerk Vi Novotne's home at 9214 Kilbury Ave. NW, Annandale.

Maple Lake Township

Wed
31
Dec

Wright County approves $2.1 million for radio update

Incurring high costs is always a problem faced by state, county and local officials. Although often necessary and sometimes overdue, outlaying huge sums of money is usually met with dread.

With the costs related to the construction of the new Law Enforcement Center, the Wright County Board of Commissioners has been hesitant to spend unneeded money on projects that could be held off. But, at the Dec. 23 board meeting, the commissioners unanimously approved allocating $2,181,458 for the infrastructure portion of the changeover to the 800 Mhz radio communications project.

Wed
31
Dec

Messina steps down as Maple Lake mayor

When Mike Messina first took office as Maple Lake's mayor in 1995, there were a host of major issues confronting the city. And Messina was not shy about taking them on right up to the end of his tenure on Dec. 31.

"A group of local business men and women encouraged me to run," Messina said about the 1994 election. "There were issues with how to best provide services to residents, how to make city hall more responsive to the people and how to handle new housing developments and the industrial park."

How to handle the reconstruction of Birch Avenue was also an issue that simmered for more than three decades. And as housing and industrial development expanded, along with it came issues regarding a sewer treatment plant near capacity and that was discharging into a small lake with no outlets.

Wed
31
Dec

Maple Lake woman has place in medical history

Selma "Sam" Beatty Hutchinson is noting an anniversary that combines some of the worst and best moments of her life.

It was 25 years ago that Hutchinson was diagnosed with aplastic anemia, a disease that attacks the blood system.

Hutchinson had just graduated from high school in 1983 when her illness was diagnosed.

"I was vacuuming, hit my leg with the vacuum and literally saw the spot where it hit bubble," she said.

Doctors found her platelet count to be extremely low, preventing her blood from coagulating properly.

"As the week went on, I was so tired," Hutchinson said. "I wasn't sick, just tired. My hemoglobin was so low, I wasn't getting oxygen. They were doing tests all week and couldn't find out what was wrong with me."

Fri
26
Dec

Filing to open for township offices

Filings for area township offices will be opening on Tuesday, Dec. 30, in preparation for annual meetings and elections which will take place on Tuesday, March 10. Filing will close on January 13 at 5 p.m. There is also a $2 filing fee. Candidates who file for the March election have until 5 p.m. on January 15 to withdraw from filing. Offices up for election are:

Albion Township

One supervisor for a three-year term and one treasurer for a two-year term.

Filings will be received at Clerk Debbie Uecker's home at 2235 County Road 6 NW, Annandale.

*Chatham Township

One supervisor for a three-year term and one treasurer for a two-year term. Candidates may file by contacting the office of Clerk Francis Munsterteiger at 763-682-6151.

*Corinna Township

One supervisor for a three-year term. Candidates may file at Clerk Vi Novotne's home at 9214 Kilbury Ave. NW, Annandale.

*Maple Lake Township

Fri
26
Dec

City moves forward with 2009 levy increase

The red ink in the state's budget has made its mark on the 2009 budget for the City of Maple Lake.

At the Dec. 16 meeting of the Maple Lake City Council, the continuation of the Truth in Taxation Hearing from Dec. 2 was conducted, with the council considering an option to cut its budget and its 2009 levy.

City Clerk Linda Hruby cited a memo from the League of Minnesota Cities, which pointed out that the state would not be waiting for the 2009 legislative session to make cuts since this year's state budget is also showing a revenue shortfall. If the state cuts aid to cities by $25 million, Maple Lake would see a cut of $12,000 in funding scheduled to arrive this month. If the state cuts its aid to cities by $100 million, Maple Lake's share would be reduced by $63,000.

"It puts us in a bad position," Hruby said. "How do you make up a shortfall at this time of the year? You don't."

Fri
26
Dec

New lady of leisure has earned her rest

Anyone who has ever volunteered for community service projects or participated in senior citizens activities in Wright County over the past 37 years has likely met and appreciated Jeannie Fobbe of Maple Lake.

Fobbe was hired on January 1, 1972, by the Wright County Welfare Department as a social worker. On Dec. 4, 2008, she retired from the Wright County Human Services Department as a social worker/resource coordinator.

And between those dates, Fobbe wore countless hats and helped countless people with their problems or projects.

Through her work as the county's volunteer services coordinator and the aging coordinator, Fobbe was involved with Christmas and Thanksgiving assistance projects, tax help, information and referral, Pen Friends, Project Trust, Friendly Visitors, community based services, the volunteer nurse program, grief support groups, 60+ and Healthy Clinic, the transportation project, Senior Companions and the Crisis Nursery.

Thu
25
Dec

Giving and receiving has new meaning for Foreman family

Three Maple Lake teenagers have come full circle in receiving and giving Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes.

Franklin Graham's Samaritan's Purse organizes Operation Christmas Child every year, all across the United States. Around this time of year, businesses, organizations and churches fill shoeboxes, plastic containers and backpacks with age-appropriate toys, clothes, candy, toothpaste and toothbrushes, among other things, to send to children all over the world. This might be the only present many children receive and though children do receive boxes at Christmas-time, most of the boxes are distributed all through the year. To-date, more than 61 million shoe boxes have been sent to children since 1993.

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