October 31 news

WORTHINGTON – With the school referendum vote coming up on Tuesday, Worthington District 518 Superintendent John Landgaard is reminding residents to get out and vote between the hours of 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. at the Worthington High School Auxiliary gym. The school receives its funding through federal, state and local taxpayer support, he said, and these dollars go to support our community in a variety of ways in promoting a healthy economic environment.

The District has chosen at this time to ask voters to decide on two ballot questions in the upcoming special election. The first question asks voters to address a building bond referendum for $38.9 million that will provide a new intermediate school (grades 3, 4, 5) and an addition of approximately 56,000 square feet to the High School and some other remodeling. This option was developed based on more than two years of discussions and work. If this building bond referendum does not pass, Landgaard said it will come back during a future election with little or no change and will likely cost more due to increased interest rates and construction costs.

The second question on the ballot is for an excess operating referendum that revokes the last year of the current $1,000 per pupil referendum. This question asks voters to address a new $1,000 per pupil referendum for 10 years. The excess operating levy has become a vital piece in supporting current educational programming and would require reductions in the future (loss of staff and opportunities), if a referendum is not in place.
Landgaard said the district would like to thank all of you for the past support and wants to continue to provide quality educational opportunities that will support Minnesota’s mission of developing the “World’s Best Workforce.”

Again, that vote is on Tuesday between the hours of 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. at the Worthington High School Auxiliary gym.

WORTHINGTON – The Worthington City Council met again Wednesday morning to continue budget talks, working hard to keep the increase in the 2014 levy at .9 percent. During initial budget meetings, the Worthington city council approved a not-to-exceed levy of 1.3 percent, but the council wanted that number even lower.

A total of $25,000 was transferred from the impact funds from the sale of the hospital to put toward a new entrance sign in Worthington, matching the same amount pur aside last year. Council member Rod Sankey objected, stating no one sits and adores their sign. When Mayor Al Oberloh saw the $25,000 each price tag on the signs, he asked member Scott Nelson if they were designing signs for a Las Vegas casino. The plan is to have the city pay for two of the signs and the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce pay for the third.

The council delayed the decision to purchase a new tanker truck for the Worthington Fire Department. On Monday, Fire Chief Rick Von Holdt had put in a request for a tanker, at a price tag of approximately $150,000. A tanker truck is rarely used within the city, but would be beneficial for rural fires. Oberloh said decision making on a truck goes with the elected bodies, not the fire department.

The council approved an additional $25,000 from the liquor store to transfer into the general fund, bringing the total to $225,000 annually. Health insurance costs went up by 20 percent in the budget to $63,000.

To cover the added expense and to get the levy back to .9 percent, the council took money from street improvements to cover the difference. The street department’s budget for overlay and road repair went from $400,000 to $350,000.

WORTHINGTON — All members of King Turkey Day Inc. are invited to attend the 2013 annual meeting Friday at Worthington Country Club. Social time begins at 6 p.m., with the meeting at 6:30 p.m. The meeting consists of reports on this year’s celebration, election of officers, new members of the board of directors and comments concerning the 2013 celebration.

WORTHINGTON – If you hear strange noises and see lots of emergency response vehicles on Sunday in Worthington, don’t panic. This is only a drill.

Law enforcement, EMS, fire departments and hazmat teams will be at the Nobles County Fairgrounds beginning at 8 a.m. Sunday for a Regional Hazardous Material, or Hazmat, drill. According to Worthington Police Sgt. Brett Wiltrout, there will be plenty of emergency response vehicles and lots of commotion, but there is no cause for concern.

WORTHINGTON – In what will be the last of the construction updates for the season, the City of Worthington Engineering Department states the Tower Street storm sewer from 11th Avenue south to the alley bituminous pavement restoration was completed Monday, and minor topsoil edge and turf restoration work remains.

MARSHALL —A vehicle stolen from Worthington was used in a firearm theft early Wednesday morning in Marshall. According to information obtained by the Marshall Independent, Marshall Police responding to an alarm call at Borch’s Sporting Goods on East College Drive at 2:41 a.m. on Wednesday and discovered that an undetermined number of firearms had been stolen. Owner Chad Wyffels said they drove a car through the front door, where it was abandoned. Police confirmed the vehicle was stolen from Worthington.

Marshall Police Chief Rob Yant called Wednesday’s break-in a “crime in progress.” Authorities are going on the assumption that more than one person was involved in the theft and that they weren’t in the store for an extended period of time. The vehicle used in the crime is being processed in Marshall.

Marshall Police request anyone who has any information call (507) 537-7000.

LUVERNE — The Rock County Land Records Office will host an open house Wednesday to showcase its new electronic recording program. It is the fifth county in District 7 to offer electronic acceptance of files for mortgages, satisfactions, deeds and other documents previously required to be submitted in paper form. Four counties have yet to make the transition, including Nobles, Jackson, Murray and Redwood.

While the advantages to e-recording are numerous, the most notable is that people will be able to email documents any time of the day, night or weekend without having to pay postage or overnight express delivery, and the turn-around time in the recorder’s office is drastically reduced.

Pipestone County was the first in the six counties of far southwest Minnesota to implement e-recording — making the transition in May 2012.

STORM LAKE, Iowa-- Storm Lake police say they arrested a Waterloo woman suspected of trying to scam Wal-Mart stores by claiming clogged toilets damaged her property. 34-year-old Shannon Cannon was arrested Monday.

She's accused of trying to scam 18 Wal-Mart stores by clogging toilets at the stores, then claiming her property was damaged by the overflowing water. Investigators say Cannon brought her young children along to the stores and used them as part of the scheme.

Cannon was originally arrested in Storm Lake in September. After an investigation police filed additional charges. She is now charged with felony ongoing criminal conduct, using a juvenile to commit a crime, misdemeanor fourth-degree fraudulent practice and criminal trespassing.

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