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Farmers Independent
Bagley, Minnesota
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January 20, 2010     Farmers Independent
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January 20, 2010
 

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SERVING CLEARWATER COUNTY, HOME OF THE MISSISSIPPI HEADWATERS, SINCE 1897 00armers R13 Small Town Papers 5026 California Ave SW Your paper Expires: Seattle WA 98136-1208 I1,1,,I,,I,,,,11,,11,,11,,,,,11,,I,II1,,,I,,I,,,I,1,11,,,I,,11 Wednesnday , Janu ary 20, 2010 $1 00i.e00ooy $24 Yearly Subscription BAGLEY, MINNESOTA ;6621 i iiiii i iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!!i!iii!iiiiii!iiiii!i!i!i!i@i!!iiiiiiiii@iii!i!iiiii!i!i!i!iiii@iiiiiiiii!iiiii!iiiii!i!iiiii!iiiii!iii!iiiiiii@iiiiiii!ii!iliiiiiiii!iiiii!iiiiiiiii!iii!i!iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!i!iiiiii!ii!ii!i!i!!!!iii!iiiiiiiiii!ii iiiiiiiii!00!i! 00iii iii !!!ii!!!!!i!i!!i!i!i!!!!!!!! !i!!i!!!i!!i! BAG='==:==i i :: :: i =:: :=:=:=! i:':= :! ii0 STATION *=:=Ii :=:= : ::=i =:=: ii" i ::=::: :::: ::=  =i :==i  = =:  :=  i ii:=:: == :  # B |y are a i = : = :=  iii i  i i i :ii == = i = iii i i i i { i== il = i i i i =I i ! i =i:=il iiii =iiii i i ii ii ii iii Governor hopefuls coming to Bagley The candidates seeking the Republican Party endorsement for governor will be coming to Bagley on Tuesday, Jan. 26. They will be at the courthouse from 2 to 4 p.m., providing an opportunity to meet and to let the candidates know your concerns. They will also be attending a forum in Bemidji that same day. Republican gubernatorial endorsement seekers are Bob Carrey Jr., Leslie Davis, Tom Emmer, Bill Haas, Phil Herwig, Sue Jeffers and Marty Seifert. Bagley School Board ratifies master contract for teachers By Darlene Sawyer After voting down a first teacher contract proposal, the Bagley Education Association negotiated a second proposal with the Bagley School Board's negotiations team for 2009- 2011. The master agreement between the BEA and ISD 162 Bagley Public Schools was accepted at the Monday, Jan. 11 School Board meeting. ' According to Supt. Steve Cairns, there have been some significant language changes and costs related to this contract settlement. Some of the language changes have been about lane changes that can only be made twice a year: by the first working day of the school year and the first working day of February. As to disabilityleave,childcare leave, and other leaves of absence, "Teachers who are seriously ill or disabled and have exhausted all accumulated paid disability leave are now eligible to apply to the superintendent for up to 12 days of "transfer disability leave" from other teachers. The Family Medical Leave Act requires the school district to pay their portion of the employee's health/medical protection insurance premium for up to 12 weeks of child care leave; and all personal leave must be taken in full or half day increments when "external substitutes" teachers are utilized. Personal leave may be taken on a one or two hour basis when "internal substitute" (current) teachers volunteer to cover teaching assignments at the current hourly rate of pay... Teacher preparation/conference time taken counts as personal leave. Also, there is a change in severance pay in the new contract: "m new severance adjustment will be made for teachers hired prior to Sept. 1, 1995 (or teachers granted tenure before June 30, 1999). These teachers will receive an increase in the total severance pay insurance contribution from $9,000 to a maximum of $11,400. This applies only to eligible teachers severing their contract. What will this new contract cost the school district? For 2009-2010, there is a master schedule "soft freeze" on salaries. The "soft freeze" means teachers will still advance through lanes and steps as usual. The contract adds 0.8 percent to Step 12 (the highest level). When all is added, the teaching staff cost will increase $80,271. For 2010-2011, the "soft freeze" continues, and 1.0 percent will be added to Step 12. When step and lane increases are added, the increase will equal $114,534. As to insurance the dis- trict pays $40 for a single and $55 toward a family policy which totals $14,190. In 2010- 2011, the district pays $40 for a single and $60 toward a family policy, which totals $30,000 for a district total of $58,380. Estimated severance pay for approximately four re- tirements over two years is es- timated at $14,400. This makes for a grand total of $347,856 for the two-year contract period. Please note that the severance pay insurance fringe increases from $9,000 to $11,400 maxi- mum per employee. There are currently 19 employees eligi- ble for this benefit. It will take School Board/Continued on page 4 Feedlot permit topic of public meeting Jan. 27 The matter of rim-off from the Rolfson Farms feedlot will be the topic of a public informational meeting that starts at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 27 at the Bagley Sr. Citizen Center. The meeting is being hosted by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, along with the townships of Nora and Copley. John and Guy Rolfson are seeking re-issuance of a permit to operate a feedlot. The MPCA describes the facility as a feedlot consisting of open lots and pasture access without runoff controls. The facility, at the time of the permit application, houses 2,750 beef feeder cattle for a total of 1,925 "animal units." A run-off collection system will be designed to contain all run-off from the open lots and from all feed storage areas. The run-offcollection system needs to be designed by a professional engineer, and the facility will not be allowed to increase its animal unit capacity. The MPCA commissioner has made a preliminary determination to reissue the permit for a term of approximately five years. According to the MPCA, the public informational meeting is informal and is intended to solicit public comment and statements and to help clarify and resolve issues. The Rolfson property is situated partly in Copley Township and partly in Nora Township, about two miles southeast of Bagley. In brief terms, according to Dr. John Rolfson, the plan will require the farm to spend about $1 million on a run-off control system that will result in the run-off flowing into a lagoon. From the lagoon the waste will be pumped into an irrigation/ fertilizer system and spread onto pasture or crop land. The Rolfson operation is what beef producers call a Feedlot meeting Continued on page 5 Moose on the loose .... The message came into the Farmers Independent office late last Friday: a moose was on the loose by Ebro Corner. When the editor arrived, the bull moose was resting in the snow, a few hundred yards from the nearest roadway, secure in the knowledge he was a long distance from humanity. After waiting a while, the editor put on his snowshoes and walked closer to the moose. The moose finally got up and trotted toward the tree line, offering this photo-opportunity. Moose are nowhere near as common a sight in these parts as they once were, with the population in northwestern Minnesota having declined sharply since 1983. It was refreshing to again see a moose on the loose! Strandbergs recognized as the county's Emerging Leaders Mark and Jenell Strandberg of Clearbrook will receive special recognition for their commitment to leadership and their community at the Agassiz Leaders Awards Banquet on Saturday, March 27 at the University of Minnesota Crookston. They, along with individuals from 15 other counties in northwestern and west central Minnesota will be recognized for their involvement. Strandberg Angus is a family farm with 60 registered black and red Angus beef cattle. In addition, 120 acres of hay is raised. Mark is also warehouse supervisor and Jenell is plant accountant, both working at Riviana Foods in Clearbrook. Mark and Jenell Strandberg have been Clearwater County's representatives in the Red River Valley Emerging Leadership Program, where they have been taking part in educational sessions along with other rural leaders since November 2009. Those sessions are focused on personal leadership styles, communication, community leadership, legislative issues, and personal vision and goal setting. This is the 26th year the Emerging Leadership Program hasbroughttogetherindividuals from across the region for recognition and training seminars. There are now more than 800 leaders in northwest and west central Minnesota who are alumni of the program. The program, which grew out of the King Agassiz Program of the Red RiVer Valley Winter Shows, was developed in 1985 by a small group of people who felt there was a need to help individuals develop their leadership potential. It continues to focus on the belief that effective leadership can be Strandbergs honored/Continued on page 5 Mark and Jenell Strandberg Democratic gubernatorial candidates appear at Native American forum By Darlene Sawyer Over 150 people crowded into the BSU American Indian Resource Center in Bemidji on Thursday evening, Jan. 14 to hear debates between nine of the Minnesota Democratic gubernatorial candidates and leaders from the Native American tribes from northem Minnesota. This was the first-ever, cross- tribal, pre-precinct caucus governor candidate forum on Native American issues in Minnesota. Major deficits with state funding of tribal schools, health care cuts to the poorest Minnesota citizens, lack of funding for Native American domestic violence programs, and most controversial -- the Indian gaming tribal-state compact -- are just a few At governor forum: Devery Fairbanks , Director of the Leech Lake Ojibwe Health Division; IreneAuginaush of Bagley and District One Rep for the White Earth Tribal Council; and Leonard Butcher of Bemidji, a member of the White Earth Ojibwe tribe. of the issues brought to the discussions of this event. The Native Vote Alliance of Minnesota's mission is "to mobilize and empower Native people in Minnesota as a collective voice through civic participation while embracing our cultural heritage," and this group co-hosted this forum. It is the first Native American- lead non-profit organization whose work includes all Native Americans in Minnesota with its mission. Other sponsors were the Greater Minnesota Racial Justice Project by ALCU, the Wellstone Action Fund's Native American Leadership Program, and TakeAction Minnesota. At the beginning of the forum, spiritual leader Michael Smith of the Leech Lake tribe gave a spiritual message. Then everyone attending was treated to a meal of tacos and beverages. Following the meal, nine discussion groups were formed and one gubernatorial candidate was assigned to a group. Each was given eight minutes to present his or her DFL hopefuls Continued on page 5