WORTHINGTON – The retirement of two long-time Nobles County employees was announced during Tuesday’s Nobles County Commissioners meeting. JoAnne Haugen, who works in the Worthington branch library, will retire June 1 after 36 years of service to the county. And after 37 years of service, Auditor-Treasurer Sharon Balster will retire June 30. Because Balster’s is an elected position with a term that lasts through 2014, the commissioners passed a resolution accepting her retirement so they can begin the process of filling the vacancy.
WORTHINGTON — As the city of Worthington continues the process of final cleanup, the city’s debris contractor will start the final pass for vegetative debris on May 28. City residents are asked to continue to place any storm-generated vegetative debris along the boulevard for final pick-up before that date. Residents are reminded that the debris must be storm-generated vegetative debris to be eligible for removal.
MINNESOTA - The Minnesota House voted 68 to 66 this afternoon to pass the bill that allows a union drive to licensed and unlicensed day care providers so they can collectively bargain with the state – a measure most local child care providers opposed. Reps. Joe Schomacker and Rod Hamilton voted against the bill. It's part of an effort by two service worker unions to organize personal care workers. The bill sets up possible unionization votes among child-care providers who get state subsidies, and separately among care attendants to the elderly and disabled.
JACKSON – A 5-year-old child was killed Saturday in rural Jackson County when he ran out in front of a vehicle on CSAH 4 at the south end of Loon Lake in Minneota Township. Yomi Alexis Castillo, was struck by a 2011 Ford Explorer, driven by Marjorie Svoboda of rural Jackson, at approximately 11:22 a.m. The child was transported by ambulance to Lakes Regional Healthcare Hospital in Spirit Lake, Iowa, where he died of his injuries. He is the son of Hose and Sandra Dominguez of Worthington.
WORTHINGTON — Nobles County Parks Director Jerry Braun said campgrounds at Fury’s Island and Maka Oicu opened Sunday, just in time for the Memorial Day weekend. Tree debris had littered the park following the April ice storm, creating a delay in the parks’ opening.
JACKSON - Flooding rains, large hail and even reports of tornados kept people in some parts of the region on the run late Friday afternoon and evening. Two tornado touchdowns were reported in Jackson County: one near Wilder and another about three miles north of Lakefield. There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage.
WORTHINGTON — The Nobles County Retired Senior Volunteer Program is seeking volunteers to help staff the office at Worthington’s Pioneer Village this summer. Hours are 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. For more information, contact RSVP, 295-5262.
SIOUX CENTER, Iowa — Two men from northwest Iowa have been charged with firearms trafficking. The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office reports that they arrested 18-year-old Skyler Gonnerman of Sioux Center on Tuesday on a charge of trafficking stolen firearms.
SLAYTON – In a statement issued yesterday afternoon, Laura J. McKnight and Gregory P. Bulinski, counsel for Murray County Medical Center and CEO Mel Snow, said they are reviewing the federal lawsuit filed against the hospital and its CEO by physician assistant Dan Woldt.
Woldt, who was put on administrative leave for nine weeks this winter before being reinstated in March, filed a lawsuit alleging Snow punished him for turning in Medicare fraud cases, blackening his reputation with his co-workers and patients.
A 25-page document filed this week in federal court accuses Murray County Medical Center and CEO Mel Snow of false accusations and more. The document follows below:
ST. PAUL — Minnesota Sen. Bill Weber and Reps. Rod Hamilton and Joe Schomacker are working to get bills to help southwest Minnesota weather a financial storm pushed through before the legislative session ends May 20. The bills request that disaster aid money be appropriated to match federal aid for the April ice storm that caused more than $26 million in damages.
After a first reading late last week, Bill HF1832 spent Tuesday night with the House Ways and Means Committee. The Committee on a voice vote approved spending $1.5 million to leverage funds to help pay for public costs.
JACKSON – A 32-year-old rural Jackson man was killed Monday when he crashed his motorcycle on CSAH 4 in Round Lake Township.
According to information released by the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office, Jason Clair Libengood was operating a 600 Yamaha on CSAH 4 near the intersection of State Highway 264 at approximately 10:30 p.m. Monday when he failed to negotiate a curve in the roadway. He entered the south ditch, struck a sign and was thrown from the motorcycle.
Libengood was transported to Sanford Worthington Hospital, where he died from his injuries.