January 22, 2015


Greenwood Township Board, residents argue over fire department


A crowd of Greenwood Township residents numbering around 30 crowded into the Greenwood Fire Hall conference room Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. for the regular council meeting. The agenda for the meeting had little on it, but the residents had much on their minds to discuss.
The Finance Report given by Treasurer Clark showed the township has $783,372.81 in checking after paying bills, $250,621.95 in long term investments, $322,057.27 in savings for a total of $1,356,052.03.
Under correspondence, the council approved $100 donations to the W.C. Heiam Foundation and the St. Louis County Fair.
They also approved a resolution to accept a grant to purchase eight SCBA tanks from FEMA. Two bids were received with the bid of $48,309.60 from TNT being approved. This will cover most of the cost.
Fire Chief Dave Fazio reported that a lawsuit on discrimination had been sent to state.
Council member Rick Worringer reported that the ISO (Insurance Service Organ-ization) had spent a half day inspecting the Greenwood Fire Dept. and gave them a strong rating of seven which is better than the regular rating of seven they received last time.
Jeff Maus who is in the fire department spoke up ques-tioning rumors about the fire department. Mark Drobac joined in the discussion, also. He said he is running for the board, also. Shouts arose from the audience on this issue. Questions arose over rumors that the council wanted to get rid of the officers in the fire department. Council Chair Tom Aro spoke up over the issue of Maus apparently going to the work place of the chief and demanding e-mails dealing with the fire department. A heated discussion between Aro and the audience followed. Audience members complained that the council did not give out information. Maus spoke of dealing with an attorney on this and possible litigation. He added that there would be more coming out on the relations between the council and the fire department and the public. Mary Worringer spoke up saying this confrontation at every meeting was costing the township money in attorney fees and spoke of libelous talk. Council member Baland spoke up for the fire department, complementing it.
Zoning Director Julia Maki reported on the forming of a Comprehensive Plan for the Township. A Mr. Clairs (sp) has been hired to put together this plan. There have been 15 applicants and only 11 were deemed the right amount by this man who was introduced at the last council meeting, but whose name isn't in the minutes that were printed on the back of this meeting's agenda.
Mark Drobac who had applied to be on this meeting, said he hadn't been contacted. There are now applications to be filled out. Drobac asked what the job description was for this committee and received no answer. Chairman Aro handed Drobac an application. The applicants will be interviewed and 11 chosen.
Fire Chief Fazio said that former Chief Scott Kregness wouldn't return $4,500 worth of equipment and asked what should be done. Audience members said that Kregness had resigned as chief, but was still on the Fire Department and pointed out he had been to one event. Fazio said Kregness wanted some information and he had it. The council said to send him another letter and then they will go further to get the equipment back.
Audience members questioned if the council had cut expenses for 2015 by $100,000 since the residents had voted to cut the levy by that amount at an earlier meeting. There was no response.
It wasn't on the agenda, but the Greenwood Township 2016 Budget Worksheet was handed out. The spread sheet showed actual 2014 expenses of $429,869.22 and preliminary 2016 budget comparison of $371,693.00.
There being no other business, the meeting adjourned.

Local hospital leaders recognized by Minnesota Hospital Association

ST. PAUL, Minn. - Sixteen hospital trustees from across Minnesota were recognized for earning certification through the Minnesota Hospital Association's trustee certification program. The comprehensive certification process prepares hospital trustees to effectively meet the growing demands of serving on a hospital board and to be strong health care and community leaders.
By participating in MHA's voluntary certification program, hospital trustees receive training on current health care trends; governance best practices; ethics; government regulations; patient safety; and quality. Participants undergo 35 hours of coursework, making Minne-sota's initiative the most comprehensive in the nation.
"In Minnesota, more and more hospital trustees are formally preparing themselves to address the often complicated issues facing hospitals and health systems today," said Lawrence Massa, MHA president and CEO. "Our trustee certification program proactively ensures that hospital leaders are well-prepared to make good decisions."
"With so many changes in health care policy and practice - especially under federal and state health care reform - hospital trustees want this kind of support to be strong leaders in their organizations," he added. "And earning this certification demonstrates a trustee's commitment to the patients and communities the hospital serves."
This list includes the newly-certified trustee: Cook Hospital & C&NC - Eric L. Pederson (second from left in picture below).

Sheriff's Office responds to snowmobile accident on Ash River Trail

At around 1:20 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 17, The St. Louis County Sheriff's Office responded to a snowmobile accident on the Ash River Trail near Kabetogama. Nicholas Kerzman, 41, of Princeton, Minn., was driving a snowmobile on the Ash River near the Ash River Trail when he hit an obstruction protruding from the river, causing his sled to roll over.
Kerzman was being followed by a group of riders who brought him into a nearby lodge where he was treated for a head injury after being knocked unconscious from the crash. Kerzman refused medical treatment.
The incident remains under investigation at this time. Assisting agencies were the International Falls Ambulance and the Kabetogama First Responders.



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