Weather Forecast


County to hold first reading for 1 a.m. liquor sales cutoff

Beltrami County commissioners will use the first meeting of the New Year to hold the first reading of an ordinance amendment prohibiting the sale of alcoholic beverages after 1 a.m.

It will be held during the board's regular 5 p.m. Tuesday meeting at the County Administration Building, 701 Minnesota Ave.

Commissioners during the regular meeting will also consider allocating $75,000 from the Community Development Fund among 11 community organizations, which have requested more than $115,000.

The move to prohibit alcohol sales in county bars after 1 a.m. came after the city of Bemidji passed an ordinance that bars within the city limits can be open until 2 a.m.

Commissioners heard concerns from both Sheriff Phil Hodapp and County Attorney Tim Faver and would provide an amendment to the county's liquor ordinance to prohibit the sale of alcoholic beverages after 1 a.m. The provision would only affect about eight establishments in the county, and would not affect establishments within the limits of incorporated cities.

It would, however effect several establishments in Northern Township, which could promote bar-hopping at 1 a.m. into the city. Commissioners, however, are hoping the newly seated City Council will repeal the 2 a.m. bar closing.

Also during the regular meeting, commissioners will consider authorizing the promotion of a non-benefited home health aide to part time with benefits and to hire a part-time health aide with no benefits.

The board will also consider the authorization to move a temporary office support specialist in the county's Redby office to permanent full time. Commissioners will also review proposed prescription easements with the Natural Resources Management Department.

At the start of the regular meeting, commissioners will elect a new board chairman to succeed Commissioner Jack Frost. Tradition calls for the chairmanship to rotate among districts, so Commissioner Joe Vene should be elected the next chairman.

Commissioners, during their 3 p.m. work session, will discuss a proposal for a speed limit on Woodhaven Lane Northeast, transportation day at the Capitol, county investment policy and hear an update on Bemidji Public Library activities.

Consent agenda items include county bills and warrant payment listing, retro-active approval of bills, approval of a Beltrami County Investment Policy and retro-active approval of unorganized township transfers.

Commissioners will also award legal publications, approve a public meeting for right-of-way on County Road 22, and approve the nomination of the Northern Dental Access Center for the National Rural Health Association Outstanding Rural Health Organization Award.