NEWS-May 17
News Director: Bev Alquist Call with news at 320-235-2900 or email

News Archive

The Litchfield School Board has approved some job descriptions for the paraprofessional positions. The board added one paraprofessional position to help with English language learning, and another to help with the school nurse. Those jobs will be posted internally. Interim Supt. Dan Frazier says they expect to fill them internally.

As part of the Student Showcase, Mrs. Haug, Honors English Instructor for Grade 9 at the New London Spicer High School, attended the school board meeting with three of her students this week. Supt. Paul Carlson says her students are currently reading and discussing Romeo and Juliette as part of the curriculum. He says they had some interesting ways to describe the literature they’re reading as part of Romeo and Juliette, acting out different versions and characters’ descriptions through raps, rap music and fortune telling. Carlson said it was interesting to see the student projects. Mrs. Haug also had on display the non-art performances such as Caricatures and displays that describe the story of Romeo and Juliette.

Pioneer Public Television will present the next episode of Postcards on Sunday night at seven. The program will be on ‘Somali Culture in Willmar.’ This will give an introduction to the local Somali culture in Willmar as Mohamed Sayid, invites you into his daily life and explains his family traditions from Somalia. You’ll also hear a tune from Somali musician, Aar Maanta, and take a trip to the Center Point Mall to visit a few colorful Somali stores.”

The Minnesota State High School League State Robotics Competition is this Saturday at Williams Arena at the University of Minnesota, St. Paul. Among the teams are students from New London-Spicer. They will be competing to claim the state championship. Opening ceremonies are at 8:30, with matches from 8:45 to 12:30 and from 1:30-2:45. The top four teams compete from 2:45 to 3, with the semis and final match from 3:15-4:30. Awards will be presented at 4:30.

The Alexandria Police Department and Alexandria Wal-Mart have received numerous phone calls from people in Alexandria and surrounding communities about emails they have received from Wal-Mart about purchases made on their account. The email shows purchases for such items at TV's and home appliances. The shipping addresses are for places all over the Unites States. Wal-mart and the Alexandria Police Department believe that these email are a Phishing Scam. Phishing is an attempt by an individual or group to solicit personal information from unsuspecting users by employing social engineering techniques. The address that it is sent from is most likely spelled differently than "Wal-mart". The emails that the police department has seen show an email address of "" So far there are no reports of financial loss by Walmart or recipients of the emails. People who have received these emails should delete them, not open or respond to the email. This case is still under investigation.

The Minnesota Senate has passed a bill that could lead to a vote to unionize among state child care workers. In the legislation, child care providers, both licensed and unlicensed, who provide child care services for a child that qualifies for state public subsidies are asked to form a union and collectively bargain with the state to negotiate public subsidy rates and terms of employment.  Elbow Lake Senator Torrey Westrom says the bill will negatively affect the small, home businesses. He says union elections would be conducted once a union demonstrates that at least 30 percent of providers have petitioned for an election.

The second recipient of Stevens County, Pay it Forward has been announced. Volunteer Mary Montonye (monn-tawn-EE) was nominated by Rose Murphy. Montonye is eighty-eight years old and continues to volunteer as a reading teacher at St. Mary's Elementary, at West Wind Village, and at the Stevens County Foodshelf. The Pay it Forward Program in Stevens County was started to honor those who act in an exemplary way to help others in their community.

FFA students from the Morris Area Schools will be traveling to the Twin Cities today(Friday), to bring ag education to inner-city classrooms. "Ag in the Classroom" mirrors a program the FFA does locally with first grade students at the Morris Elementary. FFA Officer Beth Holland says the group wants to educate both locally and in the state. The "Ag in the Classroom" program includes bringing animals to Minneapolis schools, teaching students where their food comes from, and grilling burgers for the urban students.

A grass fire north of Pennock yesterday burned about two miles of grassland. The Pennock Fire Department was assisted by Sunburg, Kerkhoven and Willmar firefighters. The fire was in a federal waterfowl production area.

The Alexandria City Council approved requests for various activities at this week’s meeting, according to City Administrator Jim Taddei. There was also a proposal from Springsted to conduct a classification and compensation study for the city. The cost is about $17,000. That request was referred to the city attorney to review. It will be brought up at the next council meeting. Bids were opened for the Phase 4 Waterline project. The engineer’s recommendation was to award the A, B, C and F bid package. The low bidder was R.L. Larson Excavating of St. Cloud. The total bid price was $5,187,672. The council approved that bid document.

Last night (Thursday), legislative leaders and Governor Dayton announced an agreement on the Tax Bill. Dayton says this is a key step in completing the budget that will resolve the deficit and makes historic investments in education, property tax relief and job creation. He said the message in education was something they promised and are delivering. Property tax relief. They promised that and are delivering. Jobs and Economic Development was something else they promised and they’re delivering, he said. “We have to take care of the deficit. We’ve done that straight forward, no gimmicks, no games, honest accounting. I’m very proud of the House and Senate the way they’ve come together and worked together.”

House Minority Leader Representative Kurt Daudt says the DFL’s budget deal is going to make Minnesota less competitive for job creators. Ultimately, he says, the number one promise the DFL made to Minnesotans was to pay back the school shift in this bill and that’s probably the most concerning part. Daudt says it does not pay back the school shift. In fact, he said, the democrats have indicated they’re going to let surplus revenues from this biennium continue to pay back the school shift. Daudt said the admittance by the DFL that the Republican budget they put in place over the last couple of years, which actually created surplus revenue north of three billion dollars, basically happened because they didn’t raise taxes. The economy grew and created jobs, he said and the state has seen that surplus revenue so they’re going to use that surplus revenue to continue to pay back the school shift while breaking their promise to have an actual plan to pay it back.

Representative Andrew Falk of rural Murdock says the Jobs and Economic Development Omnibus bill that passed the House will invest in job creation across the state and includes a huge tax cut for Minnesota businesses. Falk says they’re more than tripling their investment in economic development. The community and local economy will benefit by attracting new businesses and helping current ones to grow and expand.

The Meeker County Sheriff's Office located and recovered a stolen vehicle at 175 Meeker Avenue South in Watkins last night (Thursday). A 2001 Chevrolet Malibu, white in color, registered to 50 year old Kevin Hurrle of South Haven was reported stolen on April 7th in Stearns County. Upon further investigation, the deputies made contact with the person suspected of stealing the vehicle, 24 year old Noah Hurrle of South Haven, and arrested him for possession of stolen property and a Stearns County warrant for a DWI.   eat boogers

Yesterday afternoon (Thursday), the Litchfield Police Department arrested a 65 year old Brooten man for 1st  degree criminal sexual conduct. The arrest occurred at a South Sibley Avenue address. He is being held in the Meeker County Jail pending an appearance in Meeker County District Court.

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