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BEMIDJI -- The annexation lawsuit between Bemidji Township and the city of Bemidji may be headed for the state Court of Appeals. In documents dated Wednesday, the township’s lawyer, John Steffenhagen, appealed a March 20 decision by Ninth District Court Judge Paul T. Benshoof, which dismissed the two-year long annexation civil lawsuit. The lawsuit arose when the city allegedly annexed property within Bemidji Township improperly. The appeal calls into question whether Benshoof was correct in confirming a 2013 arbitrator’s award, which itself confirmed a May settlement agreement.
BEMIDJI -- Denelle Hilliard is no longer the executive director of Visit Bemidji. Both Hilliard and Visit Bemidji Board of Directors chairman Curt Lundquist declined to provide further details regarding Hilliard's separation from the organization on April 11. It is not known publicly what circumstances led to Hilliard's departure. Lundquist said Visit Bemidji will advertise for the position "very soon". "As soon as we can find somebody who...
BEMIDJI -- U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., toured the Bemidji Veterans Affairs Outpatient Clinic on Wednesday, conferring with clinic leadership and with local VFW members on veterans' issues. Peterson walked around the clinic's offices, stopping in to chat with the VA staffers. "It's a great facility," he told reporters afterward.
BEMIDJI -- Matt Entenza had a message for Bemidji homeowners and renters Wednesday: there's money on the way. The former DFL legislator and gubernatorial candidate held a press conference in City Hall to highlight renewed funding for two tax rebate programs under Gov. Mark Dayton: the homestead credit refund and the renter's credit refund. The average Bemidji homeowner could see a property tax reduction of almost 19 percent with the refund factored in, Entenza said, but they need to apply for the homestead credit refund first.
BEMIDJI — A local developer has emerged with big plans for the site of the former Bemidji High School. The proposed project calls for several apartment buildings that would include business space on the first floor as well as townhomes and parking. At Monday’s City Council work session, Trudy Peterson of Peterson Developers LLC presented the idea to build seven buildings that would combine housing geared toward BSU students as well as commercial space. The “University Heights” project also calls for 12 townhomes to be built on Minnesota Avenue.
BEMIDJI — New rules for Bemidji’s downtown parking lots are raising concerns the “crackdown” on cars staying the night may lead to more drunk driving. The city-owned lots are now closed from 2 a.m.
WALKER -- DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr thinks saving northern Minnesota lakes and trees reaps more than just moral benefits for the state. Landwehr repeatedly emphasized the financial value in conserving the state's waterways and forests as vital parts of the state's economy Wednesday in his remarks to a gathering of the Mississippi Headwaters Board at a resort on Leech Lake in Walker. Lakes, rivers and forests are just as important to the north country as huge companies like Medtronic are to the Twin Cities metro, Landwehr said.
BEMIDJI -- As the signup deadline for the statewide MNsure and federal Affordable Care Act health insurance exchanges loomed Monday, radio listeners might have heard an interesting pitch for enrolling: one delivered almost completely in Ojibwe. For more than six months, a series of radio spots all over the country has been encouraging American Indians to sign up for health coverage.
ST. PAUL -- About 80 Bemidjians arose before dawn Wednesday to trek down to the Capitol Building in St. Paul for the ninth annual Bemidji Day at the Capitol. After the hours-long bus drive down to the Twin Cities, the group split into teams of four to meet with legislators to sway their votes toward Bemidji. There were also larger-scale meetings where the plaid-clad amateur lobbyists got to meet with their local delegation to the Legislature, as well as Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk and high-level members of Gov.
BEMIDJI -- The Beltrami County DFL held its annual convention Sunday, hosting candidate speeches, voting on delegates and proposing changes to the state party platform. Rep. Roger Erickson, DFL-Baudette, was the first candidate for state office to speak. He said the GOP was marshalling a statewide effort to regain a majority in the Minnesota House of Representatives, and it would be a hard road to November. "You can just tell that they're gathering...to take back control of the House," Erickson said.