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Douglas County Board Meeting July 2 2024

Posted: 07/02/2024

Author: Julie Anderson

Category: County Board, Departments

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At its July 2 meeting, the Douglas County board took action on projects that will directly impact residents and visitors to both the eastern and western sides of the county.

They approved the bid from Joe Riley Construction for grading of County State Aid Highway 9 in the city of Nelson. The board also approved advertising for quotes for a bridge across the channel between Devils and Little Chippewa Lakes at Chippewa County Park. The commissioners approved two separate quotes. One for materials and one for bridge abutments. Douglas County Park staff will construct the actual bridge.

The baseball field at the Deputy Sheriff Curtis A. Felt Memorial Park will be flipped so the spectators can have easier access to the park’s bathrooms and concession area. The field is used only as a practice field currently. The hope is to use it for games for youth baseball in the future.

Commissioners also approved moving forward with a plan to restore or repair County Ditch #23 in order to reduce the flow of phosphorous into Lake Ida. Douglas Soil and Water Conservation District Coordinator Jerry Haggenmiller and County Drainage and Ag Inspector Tom Anderson explained the plan which will require outreach to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Commissioner Shane Schmidt asked if the Ida Lake Association was in favor of this plan. Anderson responded, yes, it is.

Tabitha Kremmin, the new director of Douglas County Social Services and Amy Reineke with Horizon Public Health, presented a request for funds from the Opioid Settlement. The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office asked for funds to purchase a device called a spectrometer which can be used to test unknown substances without removing them from packaging or the surface on which they are present. This will reduce exposure to harmful substances by law enforcement and first responders. Commissioners approved the request.

Missy Becker-Cook, the Chief Executive Officer of West Central Minnesota Communities Action and Amber Holmstrom, the Family and Community Services Director presented the organization’s 2023 annual report to commissioners. They highlighted the energy assistance program which served 1108 households in Douglas County in 2023. They also shared that the Head Start Program assisted 90 preschool children and 17 pregnant women and/or their children up to 3 years old. The Head Start Classrooms are located in Brandon, Osakis and Alexandria.   West Central Minnesota Communities Action also helps those temporarily homeless with hotel vouchers and has what it calls Launch Pad units that provide temporary shelter in individual housing units. They said all those programs are going very well. They also thanked West Central Minnesota Communities Action board member Commissioner Keith Englund for being a great contributor and they wished him well in his retirement at the end of 2024.

The next Douglas County Board meeting will be held Tuesday, July 16 at 9 a.m. at the Administration Building at 821 Cedar Street, Alexandria. 



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