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Perham to see slight boost in LGA next year

Minnesota’s 2014 legislative session was a bit of a mixed bag for Perham.

The session, which wrapped up May 16, resulted in a $257,000 appropriation for repairs to the Perham Area Public Library – good news for the city, as this will cover half the estimated cost of the project.

The proposed Perham-to-Pelican Rapids recreational trail, however, did not receive any funding this session, and Local Government Aid (LGA) was increased, but only slightly.

City Manager Kelcey Klemm briefly reviewed the session’s impact on Perham at a meeting last Wednesday.

“As far as city issues go, we could always do better, I guess, but we came out pretty good,” Klemm summed up.

He said Perham will be seeing a slight rise in state aid next year as part of a $7.8 million overall increase in LGA across Minnesota. The increase will amount to about an extra $12,000 for Perham in 2015.

That’s not as much as city leaders were hoping for, but “it’s better than nothing,” as Klemm said.

LGA is a state program created to help reduce disparities between jurisdictions with higher taxable values and lower taxable values.

Also at Wednesday’s meeting:

- City councilors agreed to vacate an additional 170 square feet of 2nd Street NE, adjacent to a portion vacated last September, to make room for additional silos at Bongards. Bongards is currently undergoing a major expansion project to keep up with local milk production.

- The city entered into a grant agreement with the Minnesota Department of Transportation for partial funding of the site work for the municipal airport hangar apron expansion project.

- A 9.41-acre parcel of land at 850 East Main Street was annexed into Perham and zoned for light industrial use. No one appeared against the rezoning at a previously held public hearing.

- Perham Police Chief Jason Hoaby noted that Otter Tail County has just switched over from the MIR3 digital notification system to a new but similar system called Code Red. Perham residents who signed up to receive MIR3 alerts will automatically be switched to the new system and should not notice a change in service. The transition should be “seamless” on the public’s end, Hoaby said.

Marie Johnson

Marie Johnson joined the Perham Focus more than five years ago, and has since worn many hats as writer, editor and page designer. She lives in rural Frazee with her husband, Dan, their one-year-old son, Simon, and their yellow lab, Louisa. 

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