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St. Cloud Officials Looking For Ways To Repair Lake Wobegon Trail

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11/01/2013 - 9:30 AM

ST. CLOUD, Minn. (AP) - Fifteen years after it opened, the popular Lake Wobegon Regional Trail in central Minnesota is showing signs of age.

The St. Cloud Times reported Friday that local officials are searching for ways to pay for fixes. They're considering user fees and also have their eyes on the state's Legacy Fund. That account contains set-aside sales tax dollars from a voter-approved tax increase five years ago.

Cliff Borgerding, who is president of the Lake Wobegon Trails Association, acknowledges that projects for new trails present stiff competition compared with repair and maintenance.

The Lake Wobegon trail draws hundreds of thousands of bicyclists, walkers, snowmobilers and in-line skaters every year.

Minnesota's state trail system contained 560 miles of paved trails as of 2012. That's up from 475 miles five years before.

Two Resolutions Passed, and Sports Referendum Discussed At Student Government Meeting Thursday.

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11/01/2013 - 4:25 AM

The SCSU Student Government held its weekly meeting Thursday night and passed two resolutions.

Chris Trankel, Chair of Campus Affairs, elaborated on the resolutions that were approved and how it affects the campus.

Click here for AUDIO CLIP.

Another topic discussed at the meeting was the athletic referendum that was passed by students 3 years ago. This is the third and final year on the referendum. Athletic Director Heather Weems reviewed what has been done with the increased fees since the referendum passed. She continued to explain on what can be additionally accomplished if the referendum was passed again and what it would mean to athletics if it was not. Student Vice President Lindsey Gunnerson said that the decision to vote on the referendum this Fall or Spring will be further discussed in next week’s Student Government Meeting.

Minneapolis Man Convicted Of Murder In Heroin Overdose Death of Little Falls Teenager

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11/01/2013 - 11:45 AM

LITTLE FALLS, Minn. (AP) - A jury has convicted a Minneapolis man of third-degree murder in the heroin overdose death of a 19-year-old woman in central Minnesota.

The Morrison County jury deliberated about three hours before convicting 30-year-old Keon "Bird" Mangun on Wednesday.

Prosecutors say Mangun sold heroin to another man in north Minneapolis on Feb. 28, 2012. The other man then allegedly provided that heroin to 19-year-old Miranda Gosiak of Little Falls, who died of an overdose in Little Falls.

Sentencing is set for Nov. 27.

The man accused of giving the heroin to Gosiak, 26-year-old Brandon Bedford of Little Falls, also is charged with third-degree murder. Prosecutor Todd Kosovich says a warrant was issued for Bedford's arrest after he failed to show for his scheduled jury trial in September.

SCSU Residential Hall Association Receives Philanthropy Award

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11/01/2013 - 11:30 AM

The St. Cloud State University Residence Hall Association (RAH) has received the Commitment to Philanthropy Award for the second straight year.

In RHA’s journey to achieving the award, they have joined in efforts of spreading philanthropy across both the SCSU campus and surrounding communities. One of these efforts included last year raising students’ awareness of dating violence on college campuses by co-sponsoring the RED Flag campaign.

The award was presented by the Midwest Association of College and University Residence Halls (MACURH) and given at the MACURH conference in St. Louis, Missouri this past month.

Stearns County In Search of Members Of Various Committees Starting January

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10/31/2013 - 3:30 AM

Stearns County is in the process of looking for people who are interested in serving on any of its departments’ committees or boards starting January.

All county government positions can be applied for online at the Stearns County website. Folks also have an option to sign up to receive an e-mail to be told when there is a board or committee opening.

December 6 is the application deadline to be considered for an appointment to serve on any of the committees starting January.

For a complete list of the board and committee openings, click here

Former St. Cloud Lawmaker To File Lawsuit On Blocking of New Senate Office Construction

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10/31/2013 - 12:00 PM

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - A former Republican lawmaker is suing Gov. Mark Dayton and the state of Minnesota trying to block the construction of a new office building for the state Senate. Jim Knoblach says Thursday the $90 million building is a "glaring waste of money." His lawsuit claims the Legislature's Democratic majority violated the state Constitution by authorizing it in their tax bill, which is not the typical route for approving large building projects. Knoblach represented the St. Cloud area in the House from 1995 to 2006. He says he's funding the lawsuit with his own money. Knoblach admits he only has a case over the way the building was approved, not on whether it's a worthwhile project. Right now the state's 67 senators are split up between two buildings.

Cost Of Living Index Says St. Cloud Has Lowest Housing Cost

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10/31/2013 - 11:15 AM

Cost Of Living Index Says St. Cloud Has Lowest Housing Cost

The cost of living index for the third quarter of 2013 has been released.

The St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce says St. Cloud came in at 7.1 percent under the national average with a 92.9 percent, out of a total of 100.

The cost of living index measures regional differences in the cost of consumer goods and services, excluding taxes for the top 20 percent of income earners.

St. Cloud ranked number one in lowest housing cost with 76.3 percent, which is 41.5 percent lower than the average Minneapolis housing cost.

St. Cloud had the highest average health care cost out of the four Minnesota cities measured with an average of 112.3 percent, This cost is almost 15 percent higher than Minneapolis (city with the lowest health care costs).

The 3 other cities measured besides St. Cloud were Minneapolis, St. Paul and Mankato.

Authorities Identify Pilot In Princeton Plane Crash

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10/30/2013 - 11:20 AM

Authorities Identify Pilot In Princeton Plane Crash

Investigators have identified the pilot killed in a single-engine airplane crash after taking off from Princeton Municipal Airport in east-central Minnesota Monday.

The Anoka County Midwest Medical Examiner's Office identifies the victim as 51-year-old Kevin Covlin.

Covlin was leaving for North Dakota on a hunting trip with his dog when the Piper aircraft crashed near the airport runway and briefly caught fire around 12:45 p.m. The dog survived the crash.

Covlin, who lived in Princeton, approximately 40 miles east of St. Cloud, raised four daughters with his wife and was co-owner of a Princeton company that installs and refurbishes gym floors.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the crash.

Lincoln Avenue Southeast Intersection Will Close Friday For Road Surfacing

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10/29/2013 - 2:30 AM

Lincoln Avenue Southeast Intersection Will Close Friday For Road Surfacing

The St. Cloud City Engineer’s Office says the intersection of Lincoln Avenue Southeast and 4th Street Southeast will close this Friday for road surface improvements.

Detours will be posted and drivers are encouraged to take alternate routes.

The City Engineer’s Office expects the Lincoln Avenue Southeast intersection closure to last one day.

Benton County Sheriff Asking For Information Linked To Spree Of Thefts

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10/29/2013 - 2:00 AM

Benton County Sheriff Asking For Information Linked To Spree Of Thefts

The Benton County Sheriff’s Office is asking for the public’s help relating to a spree of thefts from vehicles in Watab Township.

According to the Benton County Sheriff Brad Bennett 13 thefts were reported by citizens during the overnight hours between October 26-28.

Investigators say the thefts took place in Watab Township between the Oak Hill Golf Course and Little Rock Lake. Residents have reported missing electronics, money, purses and other property from their unlocked vehicles.

The Benton County Sheriff’s Office is advising citizens to keep their vehicles locked and remove all valuables from inside their vehicles each night.

One Person Is Dead After Plane Crashes Near Princeton Airport

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10/29/2013 - 10:15 AM

PRINCETON, Minn. (AP) - A plane crash has killed one person near the Princeton airport in east-central Minnesota.

The plane crashed about 12:45 p.m. Monday near the airport runway.

Mille Lacs County Sheriff Brent Lindgren tells WCCO-AM that a Princeton area man was heading to North Dakota to go hunting when the plane crashed.

Lindgren says the man's hunting dog was with him and survived. But the sheriff says the man, who was the only person aboard the plane, died.

His name has not been released.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board will investigate.

Princeton is about 40 miles east of St. Cloud.

Matula Family Visits Park Where Daughter's Body Was Found

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10/29/2013 - 10:00 AM

The family of a 24-year-old Eden Prairie woman missing for five months visited the Mississippi River Park where her remains were found.

Friends and family of Mandy Matula came Monday to the park along the Mississippi River north of Sartell, to see where her body was found.

Matula's father, Wayne Matula, described the spot as "beautiful and tranquil." He tells the St. Cloud Times that seeing the site "gave us some closure."

Little Falls Woman Who Fell Out of RV Has Been Identified

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10/29/2013 - 10:00 AM

RANDALL, Minn. (AP) - Authorities have identified the woman who died after falling out of the door of a recreational vehicle in Morrison County.  

Sheriff's officials say 26-year-old Ashley Cannon, of Little Falls, fell against the door when the RV began to move Sunday in Randall. The Brainerd Dispatch reports the door opened and Cannon fell on the pavement and struck her head.

She died at St. Cloud Hospital.

5th District Absentee Voting Pre-Registration To End November 12

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10/28/2013 - 1:45 AM

5th District Absentee Voting Pre-Registration To End November 12

Stearns County Auditor-Treasurer Randy Schreifels announced the pre-registration for absentee voters of the November 19 election for 5th District Commissioner ends November 12.

Pre-registering for the vote, ensures your name will be added to the election roster and can also save you time at the polls.

Residents can register to vote or update their existing voter registration online. Paper applications are still available through the Auditor-Treasurer’s office or can be printed online.

Residents who miss the pre-registration deadline of November 12 can still register on Election Day. If registering the day of the election, November 19, voters need to bring correct voter identification. 

Prescribed Fires Along Highway 55 Will Cause No Traffic Delays

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10/28/2013 - 12:30 PM

Local residents and travelers along Highway 55 between Brooten and Regal may see smoke due to controlled fires used to improve native vegetation and weed control.

According to the Minnesota Department of Transportation, the Monday fires should not affect traffic and all roadways will remain open. The fires are under control by trained crews and performed within MnDOT rights of way during suitable weather conditions to ensure safety and effectiveness.

For more information on MnDOT’s prescribed fire vegetation management program, click here

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