Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers courts, business and breaking news in addition to outdoors events.
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Hubbard County commissioners have authorized retaining the services of an outside investigator to look into a grievance between two department heads. Auditor Treasurer Pam Heeren filed the grievance against county coordinator Jack Paul. County Attorney Don Dearstyne said his office cannot investigate the complaint, so he sought outside help, declining further comment. The motion adopted by the board also "requires employees to answer questions pertinent to the investigation." Heeren was recently evaluated by the county board behind closed doors.
An alarming epidemic of substance abuse is lurking behind every citizen's medicine cabinet and Hubbard County officials are trying to stem to tide. "Prescription drug abuse is the fastest-growing drug problem in the United States," wrote Sara Bowles, Hubbard County's chemical health coordinator in sounding the alarm. "Because prescription drugs are legal, they are easily accessible, often from a home medicine cabinet.
Two years of back to back job losses in the nation are being felt locally with ever increasing requests for public assistance. Monthly income maintenance caseloads jumped from 2,245 in May to 2,296 in June. Summer is usually the time Hubbard County Social Services gets a reprieve in requests for assistance, director Daryl Bessler told the Hubbard County board Wednesday. Although monthly intakes declined from May to June, from 245 to 193, the caseload trend continues upward. In June 2000, the department's eight case workers had an average case load of 146 files. In June 2010, 10 worke
As Hubbard County's population ages, how much should the geriatric set be accommodated to remain in their lakeshore residences? And who makes that determination? That was the weighty issue confronting the Board of Adjustment as two Gilmore Lake homeowners applied for an after-the-fact variance for a lakeshore shed they built last year well within the shore impact zone. They built it because homeowner Andrew Schneider suffered a back injury and is undergoing rehabilitation. He said he could no longer carry his 5-horse Johnson motor up and down the hill, so he needs a shed to store it in
The case of a Lake George man accused of nearly killing his estranged wife during a domestic dispute one year ago is set for a pretrial conference Aug. 16. John Wesley Defatte Sr., 70, is free on bail and was allowed to leave the state to visit an ailing son in California.
What may have been a hoax call tied up three law enforcement agencies unnecessarily Thursday night in Park Rapids and startled a residential neighborhood that has seen its share of pain lately. Park Rapids Police Chief Terry Eilers said sometime after 6:30 p.m.
One of the neatest programs around getting kids interested in nature is at Itasca State Park Wednesday mornings. Called "Circle Time Under the Pines," the program is targeted to the pre-school set, but babies and school kids can still come and learn something in a fun atmosphere. Naturalist Sandra Lichter does a terrific job teaching kids about nature's wonders. They play games, read stories, sing songs, color and make projects. It's a hoot. Especially Wednesday's program, "O is for Owls." Kids colored pictures of owls, learned about owl (and other bird) feathers, hugged a stuffed
The suspect in a July 3 fight-related death in Park Rapids has been indicted on more serious charges by a grand jury. One week after Luis Candelaria, 48, was arraigned on a First Degree Manslaughter charge in the death of Richard Allen Hoskins, 41, a Hubbard County grand jury convened all day Wednesday. It returned an indictment for Second Degree Unintentional Homicide, Manslaughter and Third Degree Assault. The homicide charge is more serious than manslaughter, carrying a maximum of 40 years in prison instead of 15. Authorities say the men got into an argument while drinking and Hoski
A Park Rapids man was injured Tuesday afternoon when then the motorcycle he was driving was rear-ended by a semi-truck near Kabekona Corner. John J, Hurla, 67, was struck on Highway 200 Tuesday at 2:45. His medical condition is unknown although the Minnesota State Patrol characterized his injuries as serious. Sheriff Frank Homer said Hurla was not hospitalized in Bemidji, but said he would check to see if the injured man was brought to Park Rapids. The driver of the International straight truck was uninjured. The accident occurred at the junction of Highways 71 and 200. Dylan M.