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Fight democracy with democracy. This was the message from Dr. Carl Seemann, who hosted a meeting at his Hilltop Animal Hospital Wednesday night for area residents opposed to the planned utility expansion and road project for Birchmont Drive. About one dozen residents attended, representing 10 properties that would be assessed for utility work associated with the project.
A 19-year-old Bemidji woman died Wednesday following a crash involving a FedEx truck and a passenger vehicle, according to a press release from the Beltrami County Sheriff's Office. The crash was reported at 9:55 a.m. Wednesday at the intersection of Birchmont Beach Road Northeast and Bemidji Avenue North, the press release said. The woman who died was the driver and sole occupant of the passenger vehicle.
A request from Birchmont Drive residents has spurred the Bemidji City Council to reconsider its policy for sewer and water connection fees. The City Council voted unanimously on Monday to offer residents a longer grace period to connect to the city's sewer and water systems without facing SAC/WAC fees. Under the new policy, residents would have two construction seasons from the time they are eligible to connect to the sewer and water systems without facing a SAC/WAC fee. Residents who already have access to sewer and water systems still have until Jan.
If a private company can operate the treatment plant for less, why can't the city? City Manager John Chattin rhetorically posed this question on Monday as he recommended that the city of Bemidji continue to operate its Wastewater Treatment Facility, but do so more efficiently. "If People Service can do it, I believe we can do it," Chattin said. The city of Bemidji, at its request, has received four proposals from private companies interested in taking over operation of the treatment plant.
The city of Bemidji could save about $100,000 annually if it contracts with a private firm to operate the Wastewater Treatment Facility. But those savings would likely come at the cost of city employees' jobs. The Bemidji City Council will meet in a work session at 5:30 p.m. Monday at City Hall to discuss the proposals from four private firms interested in operating the city's treatment plant.
A 75-year-old Gully man died Tuesday due to a car accident that occurred just before 5:30 p.m. that day at Highway 75 and County Road 2 in Clay County, according to the State Patrol in Detroit Lakes. The victim, Gordon Benson, was driving east on County Road 2 in a 1993 Chevrolet pickup when he failed to yield to a 1999 Ford pickup that was headed south on Highway 75, the State Patrol reported. The Chevrolet struck the Ford broadside.
The Bemidji City Council does not appear to be moved by the request of Birchmont Drive residents objecting to the city's implementation of sewer and water access charges. Birchmont Drive residents are facing up to $21,000 in assessments if a planned utility improvement project is approved by the Northern Township Board of Supervisors on Monday. In addition to the assessment charges, residents also would face a $1,830 fee for new sewer customers and an $845 fee for a new water connection through the city's SAC/WAC charges. However, residents who connect to sewer and water prior to Jan.
Among notable action taken at the Bemidji City Council meeting Monday: Boys & Girls Club Leonore Potter, the executive director of the Boys & Girls Club of the Bemidji Area, requested $10,000 in city funds for operational costs. ACTION: The council voted 5-1 to discuss its moratorium on donations during its April1 4 work session. Councilor Nancy Erickson was opposed. Sprinkling The council considered a staff recommendation for sprinkling discounts.
The current system for billing for water usage for sprinkling will remain in place. But the Bemidji City Council voted on Monday to offer residents the opportunity to pay 12 equal payments, interest-free, to the city to cover the cost of the water meter. Residents are charged for sanitary sewer use based on the amount of their water usage -- the city of Bemidji has offered a sprinkling "discount" that takes into consideration the amount of water used for sprinkling and other outdoor needs, but the resident must purchase a second water meter and pay for its installation.
The cause of the fire that damaged the Dockside restaurant Saturday night is still under investigation, Wayne Skoe, the fire chief of the Northome Fire Department, said Tuesday afternoon. Two investigators are looking into cause: one from Itasca County and one from the State Fire Marshal office, he said. The Northome Fire Department was the primary responding agency and the Kelliher Fire Department was called in for mutual aid.