Nathan Hansen has been a reporter and editor with the Farmington Independent and the Rosemount Town Pages since 1997. He is very tall.
- Member for
- 4 years 10 months
The Farmington School District got good news on its sale of the $43 million in bonds voters approved in November. The district received a 2.85 percent interest rate on the sale. That’s down from the 4.1 percent rate predicted before the election. The difference in interest rates will save the district an estimated $7.7 million over the 15-year life of the bonds.
The hard work of dozens of volunteers went up in smoke Monday morning, and that’s a good thing. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources burned several huge piles of buckthorn cut down by volunteers organized by Trout Unlimited along the banks of the Vermillion River’s south branch. The invasive plant can muscle out more desirable species, and its shallow root system does a poor job of stopping runoff from reaching the river and damaging trout habitat.
Frustration over prolonged contract negotiations has started to spill over into the audience at school board meetings. When the Farmington School Board held its first meeting at city hall Monday, teachers dressed in red t-shirts filled all of the chairs in the audience and lined up along the sides and back of the room. The Farmington Education Association filed for mediation in December, the first time in more than 10 years teachers and the district have not been able to come to an agreement on their own.
Farmington residents may get a chance in November to decide whether they are willing to pay higher taxes to get more soccer and baseball fields or a new pool in their city. At a workshop meeting Monday night, city council members gave parks and recreation director Randy Distad 90 days to work with youth sports groups in the city on a plan to spend up to $10 million on new athletic facilities. The group will bring that plan back to the council at its May 2 meeting, and it could end up on the ballot in November.
Farmington School Board member Melissa Sauser has set her sights on the Minnesota Senate. She announced Tuesday that she has filed to run for the District 58 seat Dave Thompson will vacate at the end of the year. Sauser, who is starting her sixth year on the school board, has been an active volunteer in the local Republican party since moving to Farmington in 2006. “I always describe myself as someone who doesn’t sit in the back row. I sit in the front and get involved,” Sauser said.
Farmington City Council member Jason Bartholomay pleaded not guilty last week to charges he impersonated a police officer and pulled people over last October on Cedar Avenue in Apple Valley...
It all started with the building . Janie Tutewohl, Anne Olson, Karen Wisdorf and Shannon Nielsen had talked for years about buying the building at 341 Third Street. They wanted to renovate the apartments on the second floor, turn them into the kind of place that would make people want to live downtown. There were even some conversations with the building’s owner, but he was never interested in selling.
Fifty-two sick children may sleep with a little more of a smile on their face this year thanks to the efforts of a 12-year-old Farmington girl. Now, for 2016, her little sister is getting in on the act. Over the course of 2015, Jaela Deming sewed 52 pillowcases from 52 different, colorful fabrics. Last weekend, she donated them all to Ryan’s Case for Smiles , an organization that provides cheerful pillowcases to pediatric hospitals.
Anglers will be able to fish more of the Vermillion River for more than just fun when trout season rolls around this spring. New regulations approved last week by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources will expand the area in which anglers will be allowed to keep the rainbow trout they reel in. Under the old regulations, all of the river except about two miles within Farmington city limits was restricted to catch-and-release fishing. The new rules expand from Highway 3 to Highway 52 the part of the river in which the fish can be harvested.
The Farmington Police Department lost 57 years of combined experience when the new year started. Marilyn Walton, who had been with the department 42 years, and Sandy Pierce, who worked 15 years with Farmington police, both worked their last day Jan. 31.