Friday, July 13, 2012

Zebra Mussels Found in Pelican Lake

Scuba divers from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources have found zebra mussels in Pelican Lake in Breezy Point. They were found in two separate locations during a search of the lake on July 9.

The search was a follow-up to an intensive search last November after a single juvenile zebra mussel was found on a dock. The November search of the lake failed to turn up any additional mussels. DNR staff also asked the Pelican Lake Association to notify its members to report any suspect mussels, but no other zebra mussels were found in 2011.

The DNR reminds boaters, they are required by law to remove aquatic plants and zebra mussels from boats and trailers, drain all water, including pulling the drain plug, open water draining devises, and drain bilges and live wells.  The drain plug must be removed or open when transporting boat on public roads and bait buckets must be drained when exiting lakes that have been designated as infested with spiny waterfleas or zebra mussels.

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Gazelka Doesn't Like Marriage Amendment Language

State Senator Paul Gazelka claims Secretary of State Mark Ritchie exceeded his authority by changing the title of the Marriage Amendment on the ballot this November.

Republican Gazeklka says that while Minnesota Statutes allow the Secretary of State provide an appropriate title for each constitutional amendment, it is an authority given to the Secretary of State by the Legislature. It is not written in the Minnesota Constitution.

Gazelka says it is illogical to assume that the Minnesota Legislature would intend the Secretary of State to provide a different, more convoluted title for voters.

The Legislature wrote: "Recognition of Marriage Solely Between One Man and One Woman."

Secretary Ritchies proposed title is: "Limiting the Status of Marriage to Opposite Sex Couples.''

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Cravaack Gains a Union Endorsement

Labor unions typically support DFL candidates in Minnesota's 8th District.  This year the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 49 gathered in Duluth and endorsed Republican incumbent Chip Cravaack. 

There have been 7 attempts in this Congress to repeal critical local contractor and worker protections in the Davis-Bacon act. The union was impressed that all 7 times Congressman Cravaack voted against his party line. More recently, there have been several attempts to eliminate the ability of the government to use Project Labor Agreements on federal projects which save the taxpayers money and ensure quality construction. Congressman Cravaack voted against the party line and with the local construction workers and contractors, who benefit from Project Labor Agreements.

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Thursday, July 12, 2012

Hwy 371 & 210 Road Work

Motorists may encounter lane closures, flaggers and work zones at six intersections along Highway 210 and Highway 371 in Baxter and Brainerd from July 16 to Aug. 31.

The lane closures will occur Monday through Thursday during daytime hours; no lane closures will occur at the intersections from 6 a.m. Fridays to 8:15 a.m. Mondays.
Along Highway 210, the closures will occur at the intersections of Crow Wing County Road 48, Knollwood Drive, Gillis Avenue and Highway 25.
Along Highway 371, the closures will occur at the intersections of Crow Wing County Road 48 and College Drive.
The closures will occur as needed so crews can upgrade signal systems and improve each intersection to meet pedestrian accessibility standards.
Motorists are reminded to slow down, be alert and keep two hands on the wheel whenever approaching a work zone, orange cones and barrels or flashing lights along the roadway.

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Wolf Season Set

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resource has finalized rules for Minnesota’s first regulated wolf hunting and trapping season this fall and winter.

The state’s first regulated wolf hunt will begin Saturday, Nov. 3. The target harvest is 400. The early wolf season will last up to nine days in the 200-series deer permit areas and up to 16 days in the 100-series deer permit areas. The late season, which also allows trapping for those with a wolf trapping license, will begin Nov. 24 statewide.The closing date for the late season is Jan. 31.

The wolf range will be divided into three zones. The northeast zone and the east-central zone closely parallel the 1854 and 1837 treaty ceded territory boundaries. These zones will allow the state to allocate and manage wolf harvest in consultation with Indian bands that have court-affirmed off-reservation hunting rights.

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Road Closure Near Brainerd H.S.

Challenges remain for motorists in the area of a major road construction project around Brainerd High School.

Closed today is College Drive from the intersection of Quince Street to South 4th Street, South 5th Street from Oak Street to Quince Street and Quince Street from College Drive to South 6th, in the vicinity of the High School.  It will be closed until mid August.

Crews are installing a new road surface, signal, sidewalks and pathways.

Motorists will be rerouted.

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Garrison Woman Gets Long Prison Term

A 62-year-old Garrison woman has been sentenced to 32 and a half years in prison in the death of her estranged husband.

Helene Mitchell-Abraham was convicted of 2nd degree murder and interference of a dead body Monday.

A Cass County jury convicted Mitchell-Abraham of intentionally killing 64-year-old Wendell Wayne Abraham with her motor vehicle in September 2010.

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