November 20 news

WORTHINGTON – New weight restrictions have been posted on a bridge that spans Jack Creek just south of Brewster on County State Aid Highway 1. Nobles County Public Works Director Steve Schnieder informed commissioners Tuesday that the annual bridge safety inspection has been completed and a report sent to the state.

Twenty-seven of the bridges in Nobles County are posted as restricted, Schnieder said – approximately seven percent of the 360 bridges in the county.

The east side of the county has the most restricted bridges, which is making it difficult for large trucks to get around that area. The Jack Creek bridge posting now restricts straight trucks to a maximum weight of 16 tons, while semi trucks and straight trucks pulling trailers will be limited to 28 tons.

Schnieder said the bridge had been posted at 40 ton previously, but the inspection showed several deck plankings have cracked, leading to the stronger restrictions. Bridge design work will be done this winter so it’s ready for funding in 2014, but unfortunately, there is no funding at this point in 2014 unless the legislature approves more bonding for bridges, Schnieder said. If the state opens up more bonding for bridge replacements, will have an application ready for the first-come, first served funding.

The Commissioners also heard a report from Pat Demuth regarding the Nobles County Historical Society’s efforts to get the Worthington’s War Memorial Building and Chautauqua Park listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Demuth said the next step in the process would cost about $4,000 to complete, which the historical society has no immediate plans to take. He asked that the commissioners keep the historical society informed of any decisions made regarding the library, which is housed within the War Memorial Building.

The Commissioners discussed the 2014 Legislative Platform for Nobles County. Administrator Tom Johnson said the county’s platform will be combined with the city of Worthington’s and Worthington School District 518. County issues to be identified for area legislators include transportation infrastructure, a request for continued receipt of wind energy production tax, support for a biofuels mandate, simplification of the process for emergency management response and a request that unfunded mandates not be handed down to counties.

WORTHINGTON — Worthington’s school district 518 unanimously approved withdrawal from the Southwest Conference for athletics during a Board of Directors meeting Tuesday, and will become a member of the Big South Conference effective for the 2014-15 school year. The Big South Conference includes 13 schools from the Southwest and South Central Conference.

While discussing the recently failed votes on the operating levy and bond referendum, Superintendent John Landgaard said District 518 enrollment figures continue to climb, with projected enrollment for 2014-15 up by more than 100 students.

Board members said the most important need is to get the excess operating referendum passed. The current excess levy amount is in place through Dec. 31, 2014.
The meeting included approval of the District Improvement Plan, of the WHS Trojan Marching Band’s request for a band trip to Florida from Dec. 26, 2014-Jan. 4, 2015, and for salary adjustments for District 518 technology personnel.

WORTHINGTON — The Worthington campus of Minnesota West Community and Technical College is hosting an open house at the Center for Career Education at the former fire hall, 1215 Third Ave. from 9 to 10 a.m. Thursday. A ribbon-cutting ceremony will start at 9 a.m., with a tour of the facility available to the public afterward. Attendees will be able to listen in on the new classes and see the facility’s interior renovations.

Minnesota West purchased the old Worthington fire hall building in July. The building was prepared for the 2013-2014 school year, with the space divided between automotive classes for Worthington High School students and customized training in pneumatics and hydraulics for JBS maintenance employees.

JACKSON - 22 year old Austin Rossow of Okabena is facing charges following a car and pedestrian accident that occurred over the weekend in Jackson.

According to the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office, around 1:55 a.m. Saturday, deputies were called to a report of a car and pedestrian accident at the intersection of Grant Street and Highway 71.

Tanner Mercer, age 24, of Canby told deputies he was walking in the crosswalk when a vehicle traveling north on Highway 71 allegedly crossed the centerline and struck him. Mercer sustained non-incapacitating injuries.

Deputies located a 2004 Chevy Malibu with a broken windshield in the Casey’s parking lot with three people standing nearby. The driver of the car was identified as Austin Rossow. Rossow was arrested and formally charged with felony assault in the second degree, criminal vehicular operation, operating a motor vehicle with negligence or under the influence of alcohol, and 4th degree driving while under the influence. Rossow was released after posting bail of 20,000 dollars.

SHELDON, Iowa — RISE Ministries has announced the first artist on the 2014 Risefest lineup, Grammy nominated artist Jeremy Camp. This is Camp’s second appearance at RiseFest, as he headlined the 2009 festival. RiseFest features well known and up and coming Christian artists. In addition to musical acts, attendees can visit seminars and listen to speakers. Children can play games and make crafts in the Kid’s Zone. RiseFest 2014 marks the festival’s ninth installment, the third in Sheldon after being held in Orange City since 2005.

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