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Portion of reserves goes to NCFA

WORTHINGTON -- The Nobles County Board of Commissioners approved Tuesday morning using some of the county's financial reserves as collateral for the Nobles County Fair Association (NCFA) to finalize plans on the construction of a new restroom fac...

WORTHINGTON -- The Nobles County Board of Commissioners approved Tuesday morning using some of the county's financial reserves as collateral for the Nobles County Fair Association (NCFA) to finalize plans on the construction of a new restroom facility, fair board office and FFA Foodstand on the fairgrounds in Worthington.

The approval for up to $75,000 was granted as four members of the NCFA recapped the 2006 Nobles County Fair and provided an update on what has been a two-year process of fund raising for the new facility.

NCFA spokesman Chad Cummings said the new building, which will be a Morton Building-type structure, is badly needed on the 42-acre fairgrounds to replace the dilapidated restrooms, the trailer house that serves as a fair board office and the 50-plus-year-old building that, for a majority of those years, was operated as the FFA Foodstand.

Cummings said the NCFA's plans are to construct a 108- by 36-foot building in place of the three existing structures at a total cost of approximately $175,000. To date, the NCFA and FFA have raised about $100,000, he added.

Before demolition and site clearing begins for the new building, Cummings said the NCFA wanted to make sure the money was in place. While he has already spoken to several banks about financing, he said the group needed collateral to access a loan. The group is looking to repay the loan within 10 years.

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"We are still seeking grants," said Cummings, adding that the total requested will not exceed $75,000. The request, however, may be considerably less if it continues to receive donations.

Construction on the insulated shell is hoped to be completed by November, with interior work done during the winter months.

In other action, the board:

- Received a 2007 budget request from RSVP asking for an increase from $1.15 per capita to $1.30 per capita. The request will be taken under advisement during the budget work sessions. Mary McLaughlin, RSVP executive director, reported that within the first six months of 2006, RSVP utilized 2,090 volunteers to log more than 101,680 hours of service.

- Approved a request by Public Works Director Stephen Schnieder to conduct a speed study on Nobles County 1 within the City of Brewster to determine if a school speed zone should be posted.

- Awarded a bid for a bituminous overlay contract to Central Specialties Inc., St. Cloud, for $598,310.17. The project includes about five miles of paving on various roads within the county.

- Granted a conditional use permit to Dale Teerink of Worthington to continue operation of a gravel pit with a hot mix plant in the east half of the northwest quarter of Section 36, Seward Township.

- Granted a conditional use permit for Gerald Weg and Weg's Blue & White Dairy, Bigelow, to expand its operation with the addition of a 104- by 232-foot pole shed to be used for dry cows and calving. The addition will be in the northwest quarter of the northwest quarter of Section 24, Ransom Township.

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- Approved a restructuring in positions in the county maintenance department. Due to the resignation of a maintenance crew chief, it was recommended to reduce the number of crew chiefs from three to two, and increase the number of maintenance worker positions from nine to 10.

- Approved an application by the City of Worthington to purchase a tax forfeited parcel at 519 Humiston Ave. The home on the parcel will be razed and developed for a public purpose.

- Approved a final payment of $5,515.37 to Union Pacific Railroad for work completed on Nobles County 33, a railroad crossing improvement project completed near Swift & Co.

- Approved revisions to the Nobles County Emergency Operations Plan, and accepted an Emergency Management Performance Grant for $11,215.

- Tabled the appointment of two individuals to the Okabena-Ocheda Watershed District Board until the next meeting. Two existing members asked to be reappointed, and a third individual is seeking a position on the board.

- Authorized establishing the Blue Ribbon Committee, a joint planning commission to evaluate land use control surrounding the City of Worthington. The committee will consist of two representatives from the city, two from the county, two from Lorain Township and two from Worthington Township. Commissioners Norm Gallagher and Vern Leistico were selected to represent the county.

Julie Buntjer became editor of The Globe in July 2021, after working as a beat reporter at the Worthington newspaper since December 2003. She has a bachelor's degree in agriculture journalism from South Dakota State University.
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