Weather Forecast


Bjerknes to plead guilty to state and federal charges

Blackduck City Council reinstates contract with HRDC

The Blackduck City Council has reiterated an agreement to a contract with the Headwaters Regional Development Commission (HRDC) in support of the Blackduck Sidewalks and Trails Planning Process.

An agreement between the two was originally made during the council’s meeting in September but nothing was noted in the meeting’s minutes. Kurt Wayne, a development specialist with the HRDC, was present at Monday’s regular meeting and was present at the September meeting, according to the minutes recorded on the city of Blackduck’s website. Nothing other than he attended the meeting was mentioned in September’s minutes.

Wayne explained the idea for the Blackduck Sidewalks and Trails Planning Process, stating it was basically the same as it was in September.

“We want to measure the inventory of sidewalks and trails around town to see where we could build more, where we need maintenance on some,” Wayne said. “We also want to get more community input on what else we can do in terms of education and encouragement opportunities for better biking and walking and other physical activity.”

Wayne said that the last part of the process will include putting together an application for federal funding for the project.

The total cost for the project is $14,000. The HRDC, using a grant, will put forward $6,000 and the city of Blackduck, also using a grant, will give $8,000. The Northwest Minnesota Foundation awarded a grant for $7,000 to the city.

The HRDC filed the grant application to the Northwest Minnesota Foundation, which did award the funding under the condition it be an item on the agenda at the council’s meeting and also mentioned in the minutes.

“We just need to verify that Blackduck will put forth $1,000 plus in-kind support and that’s through staff time with public works and Ryan Grow and others as their contribution to the project,” Wayne said.

Council member Sam Christenson made the motion to approve the agreement that was made in September and member Kris Stade seconded. Another motion that agreed to go under contracted with the HRDC was also made.

Other items on the agenda

  • The final reading of the Split and Sunday Liquor ordinance was approved. 
  • The motion to hire a full-time patrol officer was made. Matthew Nikle is expected to start soon. A new employee was also hired at the golf course.
  • Ryan Grow, community facilitator, reported that over 600 Blackduck families utilized the Bemidji Community Food Shelf this year. Grow is trying to start a similar operation in Blackduck. 
  • The city of Blackduck and the fire department have signed a 10-year contract. 
  • Jim Andersen of the Blackduck Golf Course reported that walking traffic to the course is down this year. Also, six tournaments will be held at the course so far this summer and 56 memberships have been purchased.
Jillian Gandsey

Jillian Gandsey is the Multimedia Editor at the Bemidji Pioneer. She is an Iron Range native and a 2013 graduate of Bemidji State University. Follow Jillian on Twitter and Instagram @jilliangandsey. Contact her at 218-333-9786, 218-996-1216 or at 

(218) 333-9786