Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers courts, business and breaking news in addition to outdoors events.
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Hubbard County will spend up to $7,000 to have architects and structural, electrical and mechanical engineers draw up floor plans for a prospective move of the District Courts, even though two of the five county board members strenuously disapproved. The county has already spent $16,800 to retain architects that conducted extensive interviews with county departments that would ultimately tell them how best to allocate the county's current and future space needs.
After nearly three years of meetings and study, Hubbard County voted Wednesday to move forward on the purchase of VHF digital radio equipment for emergency personnel, not align itself with the expensive state radio system called ARMER. Sheriff Frank Homer said the VHF digital equipment makes the best fiscal sense for the county.
Hubbard County will flush its new septic system ordinance and return to its old one. Uncertainty as to what the state would do to the rules, and what affect it would have on the local building trades prompted the Hubbard County Board of Commissioners to suspend the Feb. 4 implementation of the ordinance. The board will set another public hearing. When it's all said and done, County Ordinance No. 38 will be kaput. "We acted in good faith based on the promises of the state" that all county ordinances governing septic systems should be enacted by the Feb.
Hubbard County's Sentence to Service program looks like it will become a victim of state budget woes. Cuts to many state programs mean lawmakers will no longer fund community service programs for inmates after 2010, which could mean $23,800 locally. But Hubbard County's program, with an annual budget of $140,000, may still survive financially, thanks to township and public contributions for the popular services it offers. Over the past decade, the STS and the Community Work Services programs have completed an estimated $1.8 million in public projects, said director Randy Griess.
A "magical place" of pristine forestland south of Kabekona Lake, with an estimated value of $1 million, will be sold to the Minnesota Trust for Public Land for scientific research and aquatic management. The 440-acre tract will eventually be resold to the Department of Natural Resources as its steward in perpetuity.
Hubbard County received so many qualified applicants for the position of Veterans Service Officer it will interview the top eight candidates next week, not six as previously planned. "I just couldn't get it down to six," admitted Hubbard County board chair Lyle Robinson, in rating the 81 applicants. Interviews will begin at 8 a.m. March 10 in the county boardroom and are open to the public. The interviewees are Clinton Danielson, Kevin Litzau, Janette Long, Randal Lundborg, Gregory Remus, Gregory Skogen, Trevor Thompson and Timothy Weeks.
At a time when American consumerism is at an all-time low, one would think repair businesses would be flourishing. Yes and no. "If someone comes in with a project I'm usually three to four days out but now I'm standing here waiting for people to walk in the door," said Shawn Mahowald, co-owner of Izzy's Machine & Welding Shop in Park Rapids. He hopes the lull is temporary. Come spring, he plans to be up to his eyeballs repairing docks, boatlifts, boat trailers and farm equipment. There are signs people are hanging on to what they own, repairing stoves, appliances, furnishings and equ
The suspect in last weekend's Akeley bank robbery had weapons at home, but mysteriously used an air pistol purchased 11 days earlier to allegedly commit the heist according to the criminal complaint. Edward Joseph Lowen, who lives in Hubbard County, was arraigned Friday on three felony charges in connection with the heist. Public hysteria erupted following the relatively low bail amounts set by District Judge Paul Rasmussen, $75,000 unconditional and $25,000 with conditions. County Attorney Don Dearstyne had requested $150,000 and $100,000 amounts. Several residents spoke to the Enterp
A Park Rapids area man was arrested Wednesday night in connection with the robbery of an Akeley branch bank less than a week ago. Edward Joseph Lowen, 53, was taken into custody Wednesday night about 8:30 p.m., Sheriff Frank Homer said. He was at his residence at the time. The $2,525 taken, however, was not recovered, said Homer. "There's still a lot of follow-up that need to be done," he said. "You want to tie up loose ends." On Wednesday night, two hours before the arrest, Homer told the Enterprise "we're getting calls, about a dozen tips so far.
It was the public recognition of Edward Joseph Lowen that ultimately led to his arrest on armed robbery charges of the Akeley branch bank last weekend. Numerous tips from residents and others tipped off Hubbard County authorities to his presence in the area less than a week after $2,500 was taken from First National Bank of Walker's branch.