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It's that time of year again....time for wild fires. And they have kept some fire department busy so far. Like this weekend where the Stoddard-Bergen Fire Department was called out to theTownship of Bergen where a wild land fire was heading toward a shed. And it got worse than that. The Department found 2-sheds were fully engulfed in fire. Fire was also in direct contact with a 500 gallon LP cylinder and another shed. In the end, fire had destroyed 2 sheds and a car, a 3rd shed recieved minor structure damage and home exterior damage was reported to the 2nd floor and 2 rooms on 1st floor. The dry vegetation and wind gusts caused the valley the wild land fire moved up the hill at an alarming rate. Winds were gusting as high as 29mph.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation by the Stoddard-Bergen Fire Department.
If the DNR takes it over, will La Crosse be able to use its own marsh? The DNR wants the city to live up to a decade-old vow to transfer ownership of the marsh to the state agency. But some are worried that would mean La Crosse would have less control over land within city boundaries. Possibly, says the DNR's Craig Thompson, but possibly no less control than it has now
The transfer talk has emerged again after the resurgence of potential plans to build a north south corridor for the city through the marsh.
The only thing at stake in talks this week in La Crosse city hall is the existence of the city's most popular event. Mayor Matt Harter plans to meet with representatives from the Oktoberfest board to work out an agreement on fees that the city wants from the event to offset costs of police overtime. The board thinks the fees are excessive enough that it has suspended planning for its three parades in the fall. Despite that, Harter feels optimistic
The city wants 18 thousand dollars for the Maple Leaf and Torchlight parades. Apparently no charge for the opening day parade, but the organization has put that one hold, anyway.
The Government Accountability Board wants to hold recall elections May 8th, or use that date for primary elections if needed and then hold the general election June 5th. And La Crosse County Clerk, Ginny Dankmeyer, is not wasting anytime getting things ready for the elections.
She says going through the same process last year with recall elections has given her staff an upper hand in preparing for this years. She has projected a 35% voter turnout in the recall of the Governor and Lt. Governor.
The foes of frac sand mining in southeast Minnesota have plenty of questions about the business...which they would like answered while local governments impose moratoriums on the mining.
Residents of Houston County may get some of those answers at a hearing Monday night, held at La Crescent High School. Kelly Stanage, a member of the 'Houston County Protectors' opposition group, says property values near a frac sand mine are just one concern of her organization. Stanage says frac sand mining also could cause local taxes to rise, because truck traffic associated with the mines might cause road damage that would have to be fixed. The hearing begins at 6:30.