Sen. Torrey Westrom and I [Paul Anderson] have scheduled three town hall meetings June 12 in order to receive input from local citizens. This follows one we recently conducted in Alexandria. Sen. Westrom and I will provide our thoughts on the now-concluded 2014 session, but the main thing is we’d like to hear what is on people’s minds. Here is the schedule and I hope you can attend:
June 12 town hall schedule:
Glenwood: 1 p.m., Pizza Ranch, 14 Minnesota Ave. E.
Sauk Centre: 2:45 p.m., Lynx National Golf Course clubhouse, 40204 Primrose Lane
Melrose: 4 p.m., Arvig, 224 Main St. E.
Although it’s raining again this afternoon as I write this email, the precipitation is not as heavy as that received last week. Unofficial totals ranging up to nine inches or more were reported in some of the hardest-hit parts of western Stearns County. Todd County, just to the north, also had heavy rain, and State Highway 28 in the Ward Springs area was washed out. According to officials from MnDOT, about 160 feet of the roadway had to be replaced before the road could be re-opened again. A county road in Stearns County was also washed out as a result of the weekend deluge, according to Stearns County Highway Engineer Jody Teich. That was County Road 187, located southwest of Sauk Centre, where about 50 feet of roadway washed away. County work crews were busy repairing the road, and it was opened to traffic again on Tuesday. Officials will let the new portion of the roadway “settle” a bit before applying a finishing coat of blacktop.
I visited with a resident who lives along Highway 4, just south of I-94 between Sauk Centre and Melrose, and the approach off the highway to his driveway was washed out. I also visited with a board member of the Sauk River Watershed, who reported that a ditch clean-out project currently in progress, was damaged by the weekend rain. The new ditch banks hadn’t been stabilized yet, and trees and other debris that had been cleaned out of the ditch were carried downstream and contributed to culverts being plugged.
I also was in contact with Stearns County Emergency Management who reported that, for the most part, the cities and townships most affected by the heavy rains, were doing a good job of getting things back to normal.