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Pierce County supervisors voted last week to use $7,700 from a maintenance fund to replace the jail's air conditioner condensing system. Action was postponed on a proposal to pay a private company $15,000 to refresh a jail needs assessment. Two air condensing units in the jail have failed and another is failing. According to a proposal from River Falls Heating, by 2010 manufacturers will stop making air conditioning units with the refrigerant now used by the jail units.
Six more homeowners have filed claims against Pierce County, alleging blasting in a county rock quarry has caused over $50,000 in damage for each of them. The new claims join four others filed in July. The families--who live on 180th Avenue, 185th Avenue or CTH VV in the Town of Trenton--say blasting done by the highway department has caused cracks in the walls, cement floors, foundations and driveways of their homes. The quarry is located on CTH VV. All 10 of the homeowners are represented by Prescott attorney Warren Lee Brandt. Claims have been filed by Paul Greenhaw, Maryann C.
Four homeowners have filed claims against Pierce County, alleging that blasting in a county rock quarry has caused over $50,000 in damage for each of them. The four -- who live on either 180th or 185th avenue in the town of Trenton - claim blasting done by the Highway Department has caused cracks in the walls, cement floors, foundations and driveways of their homes.
Ellsworth EMT Matt Stress is the sort of person bloodmobile organizers hope for: he gives regularly and his blood type is O positive. While she knows not all of them have this type blood, Ellsworth bloodmobile Co-Chairwoman Pam Enger encourages other emergency workers to join Stress and make blood donation part of their routine.
During a brief hearing Tuesday, a disorderly conduct charge against a Pierce County Board member who used obscenities during a UW-River Falls student meeting was dismissed. Calling the charge a "warning shot," Pierce County District Attorney John O'Boyle asked Judge Robert Wing to dismiss the forfeiture complaint against Ben Plunkett, 36, 709 Bartosh Ln., River Falls. Until the day before the hearing, the case had been set to go to trial before a six-person jury.
It's not marriage, but some say it's marriage-like. There will be a waiting period and a fee, but no ceremony is needed. In a couple of weeks, same-sex couples in Wisconsin will be allowed to declare domestic partnerships and take advantage of some of the rights and benefits extended to married couples. County clerks around the state are preparing to accept domestic partnership declaration applications starting Aug. 3. The Domestic Partnership Law was included in the 2009-2010 state budget signed by Gov. Jim Doyle June 29.
Indicating the builders' organization hadn't exhausted administrative remedies, Pierce County Judge Robert Wing dismissed a lawsuit challenging a town's impact fees. In an order signed July 7, Wing dismissed a lawsuit filed by the St. Croix Home Builders Association against the Town of Oak Grove. A spokesman for the builders' group said it still has a suit pending in St. Croix County and hasn't given up its fight. "We respect the decision, but we think it's flawed," said Bill Berndt, the government affairs consultant for the Home Builders Association.
The stepfather of a toddler who died in Pierce County has been charged with murder for allegedly inflicting the injuries that led to death of 17-month-old Nicholas Arthur Miller. Tylar J. Hokanson, 22, who was most recently living with relatives in Northfield, Minn., was charged July 1 with unintentional murder during an assault. A Dakota County (Minn.) judge set bail at $500,000 without conditions or $350,000 with conditions. According to the criminal complaint, at about 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 23, the Pierce County Sheriff's Department received a 911 call from a home in Maiden Rock.
A Minnesota man is a suspect in the death of his 18-month-old stepson, who died last week apparently in Pierce County. Tylar James Hokanson, 22, is being held in the Dakota County (Minn.) jail as authorities from that county and from Pierce County investigate the death of Nicholas Miller. A Northfield (Minn.) News obituary lists the boy's parents as Melissa Hokanson of Northfield, and Brian Miller of Castle Rock, Minn. His step-grandparents are Ruth and Walter Hunecke of Maiden Rock. Tylar Hokanson was taken into custody Saturday.
The Pierce County Board voted last week to confirm the hiring of Assistant Director Sue Galoff as director of the public health department. Galoff, who has worked for the department since 1991, succeeds Caralynn Hodgson, who resigned to take a job as home care supervisor in Polk County. Galoff is now completing requirements for her master's degree in health care administration at the University of Minnesota.