Friday, August 28, 2009

Minnesota Bank Closed By The Feds

Regulators on Friday night shut down banks in California, Maryland and a bank in Minnesota. The FDIC took over the Mainstreet Bank, based in Forest Lake, Minnesota with assets of $459-Million dollars and deposits of $434-Million. The bank reopened on Saturday under the auspices of Central Bank of Stillwater, which is assuming the deposits and assets of Mainstreet Bank, whose eight branches are included in the deal.

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Two Annandale men are now facing double trouble. 35-year-old Brent Paul Martin and 45-year-old James Irving Dale are charged with burglarizing two area golf club houses.

The two were nabbed Monday morning in connection with a break-in at the Eagles Landing Golf course in Ripley Township. They were grabbed by Morrison County Deputies shortly after the early morning caper, upon returning the scene of the crime. Burglary tools were allegedly found in the white van they were driving.

The two men are now also facing criminal felony complaints for breaking and entering the Grey Stone Golf Course club house north of Sauk Centre in Todd County on July 20th.

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Breezy Point Community Fest Saturday

The grounds of Breezy Point City hall will host the 4th annual Community Fest Saturday. Coordinator Lisa Doerr tells KLKS News, Breezy Pointers will have lots to see. She says there will be a public safety display, information from area organizations, a raffle for prizes donated by area business, games and prizes for the kids, and a free hot dog lunch for everyone who attends.

Ms. Doerr says they will also have the ever-popular dunk tank. Among those taking a dip on what shapes up to be a cool Saturday, will be the Police Chief and two members of the city council.

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Opposition to Canadian Oil Pipeline

An international coalition of environmental and Native American groups strongly opposed The U.S. State Department decision to issue a permit for a pipeline to carry oil on earth from Canada to the U.S. and vowed to challenge it in court.

The coalition says the State Department has "rubber-stamped" a project that will mean more air, water and global warming pollution, particularly in the communities near refineries that will process what they describe as "dirty oil," said Earthjustice attorney Sarah Burt. "The project's environmental review fails to show how construction of the so-called Alberta Clipper is in the national interest."

The groups claim the decision contradicts President Obama's promise to cut global warming pollution and America's addiction to oil while investing in a clean energy future.

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Wage Subsidy on the Range

A $1 million Iron Range Resources Wage Subsidy Program, which assists businesses headquartered within the Taconite Assistance Area in hiring new employees, is now available through the Workforce Centers in Northeast Minnesota.

The program provides eligible businesses with a wage subsidy that amounts to the lesser of $5 per hour or 50 percent of an eligible employee’s wage for up to six months, or $5,000, whichever occurs first. As many as five employees can be hired through the program for any one business, for a total of up to $25,000.

Iron Range Resources is providing funding for the program, which will be administered through the Northeast Minnesota Workforce Centers in Virginia, Hibbing, Grand Rapids, and Aitkin and AEOA offices in Cook and Lake counties.

To be eligible, businesses must be headquartered within the Iron Range Resources' Taconite Assistance Area for at least a year in the following industries: manufacturing, wholesale trade, retail trade, transportation and warehousing, finance and insurance, professional and technical services, and management of companies and enterprises. Businesses with employees currently on layoff status or on reduced hours are not eligible for the program.

The program was approved by the Iron Range Resources Board in June to support job growth within the Iron Range Resources service area. Businesses with employees on active layoff status or a reduced work schedule are not eligible. Priority will be given to eligible businesses with 25 or fewer employees that intend to add new full-time permanent positions.

Employers interested in applying for the program can obtain an application at a local Workforce Center or Completed applications must be submitted by fax, mail or email to:
Aitkin Workforce Center, 321 Minnesota Avenue North: Kari Paulsen, 218-927-5623
Fax 218-927-5624,

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AM Legion Day in Nisswa

Mayor Brain Lehman proclaimed September 16th, 2009 as "American Legion Day" in Nisswa. He said the observance recognizes the many contributions of Legionnaires in the community.

The American Legion is an organization of War Veterans who continue to dedicate themselves to the service for Community, State, and Nation.

The Nisswa Billie Brown Post 627 was named after Billie Brown who died during the Bataan Death March at the hands of the Japanese during the start of World War II.

The Nisswa American Legion will have an Open House at the Legion on September 16th, 2009 from 3 to 6 p.m. The post will have tables with legionnaires showing the many ways they support the community.

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Bridges Out of Poverty

Central Lakes College in Brainerd will be the site for a free seminar September 15th sponsored by the Crow Wing County Human Rights Commission.

Co-sponsors include the Crow Wing County Coalition to End Poverty, Central Lakes College, and Lutheran Social Services.

The seminar will be 2-8 p.m. in Chalberg Theatre on the Brainerd campus. A light snack is provided.

Bridges Out of Poverty: Strategies for Professionals and Communities, gives both the social service provider and the community member key lessons in dealing with individuals from poverty. Topics include increasing awareness of the differences in economic cultures, how those differences affect opportunities for success, developing an action plan to improve services to clients and improving retention rates for new hires from poverty.

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Dr. Anderson Comes to Brainerd

Dr.Harvey Anderson, joined the Brainerd Lakes Health medical staff in August. Dr. Anderson specializes in overall family health and wellness. He provides patients of all ages with primary and preventative care, treatment of acute and chronic illness.

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Thursday, August 27, 2009

Dog Owners Warned of Wolf Sighting

Dog owners in the Crosslake, Pine River and Backus areas are being asked to watch their pets closely. DNR Conservation Officer Cary Shoutz says the wolf population in that area has been growing the last few years. He tells KLKS News, sightings have been made on the east edge of Crosslake along County Road 36.

Shoutz says a confrontation between a wolf and dog typically does not end well for the dog. He says one in the Crosslake area may be been lost.

Shoutz recommends dog owners keep their pets kenneled or on a leash.

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Park Rapids Nurse Appointed to Governor's Board

Governor Tim Pawlenty has appointed five to the Minnesota Board of Nursing, including Deborah Haagenson, of Park Rapids. Haagenson is a registered nurse, vice president of patient care and chief nursing officer at St. Joseph's Area Health Services in Park Rapids. Haagenson replaces Darin Prescott on the Board of Nursing as an RN member and is appointed to a four-year term.

The Minnesota Board of Nursing licenses and disciplines nurses, and approves nurse education programs. The board consists of 16 members appointed by the Governor.

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Detour on Hwy 169

The day after Labor day, Motorists traveling on Highway 169 two miles south of Aitkin will encounter a detour.

The detour will use three miles of Aitkin County Road 76.

The road closure, which begins Tuesday September 8th, is necessary to replace two Ripple River culverts.

Landwehr Construction, Inc. of St. Cloud is the prime contractor for the $980,700 improvement project.

Motorists are advised to allow for extra travel time and watch for detour signs.

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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Waffles for Bricks

Veterans groups will be serving waffles Sunday as part of the fund raising process for a new all-veterans building they want to erect. Spokesman David Pundt tells KLKS News they need to raise money to fund the planning process, and eventually replace two aging buildings in downtown Brainerd, used to house veterans functions.

The waffle breakfast will be served at the National Guard Armory on Wright Street, 8:30 to 12:30 p.m. Sunday, August 30.

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Fishing Class for Kids

As the new school year is about to begin, the DNR wants area school districts to think about readin', writin', arithmetic and rapalas.

Nadine Meyer of the MinnAqua program tells KLKS news, she is available for workshops for educators to teach students about fishing.

The Crosby-Ironton and Longville-Remer school districts currently have a program. If others are interested, they should contact Meyer at (218) 740-2063.

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The Employment Picture Improves Around the Lakes

The unemployment rate around the Brainerd Lakes area has improved over the past month. In Crow Wing county it has improved by more than a full percentage point from June to July, dropping from 9.4 to 8.3 percent. Out of a workforce of 35,500, nearly 32,600 held a job. However, the unemployment rate in July was still more than 2 percent higher than the same period a year ago.

The employment picture was also better in Cass County, Morrison and Aitkin Counties, but not by as much as in Crow Wing.

The highest unemployment rate, in July, was in Morrison county at 10.4 percent.

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Walters Makes Indiana

Gary Walters has bladed his way to central Indiana. The Brainerd man is roller-blading to Washington DC to raise awareness of the work of Kinship Partners, encourage new mentors to join and raise some money.

Walters tells KLKS news, so far they have raised over $7 thousand, and hopes to raise even more. He says they have been averaging just over 50 miles a day. And, he has taken about seven spills along the way. While he is admittedly tired, he feels good, and is confident he can finish the trip to the Capitol steps in Washington DC.

A meeting is planned with Congressman Jim Oberstar on September 9th. Walters will trade his roller blades for a Chevy Suburban for the tip back to Brainerd.

Those wishing to donate may go to the Kinship website for details.

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Eagles Landing Burglarized

Two Annandale men have been arrested on suspicion of attempting to burglarize the Eagles Landing Golf course in Ripley Township. 35-year-old Brent Paul Martin and 45-year old James Irving Dale were stopped by Morrison County Deputies shortly after 1 a.m. Monday morning. Lawmen found burglary tools in their white van.

Deputies were dispatched to the golf course answering a burglar alarm. When they arrived, they found a back door forced open and some damage inside. It hadn't been determined if anything had been stolen.

The deputies grabbed the pair when they allegedly returned to the crime scene.

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New Board Members For Confidence Center

Confidence Learning Center appointed new board members at its August 4th meeting. They are: Crow Wing County Sheriffs Department Todd Dahl, ISD 181 Sara Hight, and Scott Johnson of The Office Shop.

Confidence Learning Center provides year-round education and recreation programs for persons of all ages with developmental disabilities and provides opportunities with the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community for language and cultural expansion, education and support.

Confidence Learning Center receives no local, state or federal funds and relies on individual and corporate donations as well as annual special events and fundraisers for support.

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Brainerd Water Chlorinated

The Brainerd water supply is being chlorinated. Brainerd Public Utilites Supervisor Tom Phelps says they discovered coliform bacteria late last week near the south 8th Street construction site. The pipes were flushed, and chlorine is being added today to treat the water mains.

Phelps says this is not an emergency, and consumers should not be alarmed.

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Monday, August 24, 2009

911 Abused in Crow Wing County

Crow Wing County Sheriff Todd Dahl says the 911 emergency phone service is being abused. He tells KLKS News, it is for assaults, auto accidents, domestic violence, and those sorts of genuine emergencies.

Dahl says people are calling 911 for information, like when the fireworks begin. The Sheriff says the fireworks always begin after dark, and not so much during the day.

The non emergency number for the dispatcher is (218) 829-4749.

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New MN Outdoors Projects

(AP) Soon we will seen the results of the voter approved increase in the Minnesota sales tax for outdoors and cultural projects.

A committee of the Minnesota State House will look at projects ranging from preserving large tracts of forest near Grand Rapids to youth museum visits. The Governor and legislature approved $400-million for habitat, water, park and arts projects for the next two years.

Taxpayers will be able to follow the spending on a web site.

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Roller Blader Killed on Paul Bunyan Trail

A 59-year-old Zimmerman, Minnesota man was killed while roller blading on the Paul Bunyan Trial Sunday morning. Pequot Lakes Police say he was exercising on the popular route when he and his 31-year-old daughter failed to stop for a stop sign at County Road 107. He was struck by a 21-year-old Pequot Lakes man about 10:15 a.m.

The victim's name has not been released.

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Two Hospitalized from Motorcycle Accident

A collision between a motorcycle and a deer in Todd County sent two to the hospital over the weekend. The accident happened just before 8 p.m. Saturday night on County Road 2, just east of 151st Avenue.

The driver and passenger were air lifted to St. Cloud Hospital. The male driver was reported to be in good condition, his female passenger was listed in stable condition in the Intensive Care Unit. Their names have not been released.

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