County government, in coordination with the Otter Tail County Board of Commissioners, is continuing its assistance to small businesses throughout the county in the wake of COVID-19.

“We’re here to help businesses in the county, realizing that recovery will take many months, and in some cases many years,” County Deputy Administrator Nick Leonard said during the board's June 16 meeting.

He reminded commissioners about the county’s Community Development Agency that provides direct aid in the recovery of small businesses. At the same time, the county works in coordination with the state of Minnesota in assisting Otter Tail County business owners with small business grants and loans.

Leonard was asked about state funding for other projects not related to COVID-19.

“Legislators are doing their best to make sure our state stays afloat,” Leonard said. “Due to recent events there is only so much revenue coming in, and the state each year is required balance its budget.

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County Community Development Director Amy Baldwin also addressed county commissioners online and talked about the county’s small business relief fund. Eligible businesses can receive up to $2,000 of funding to offset the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The program is designed for small businesses, not including Fergus Falls and Perham. Eligible businesses are those with fewer than 25 employees and annual revenue of less than $1 million annually.

For more information, contact Baldwin at abaldwin@co.ottertail.mn.us or by calling her at 218-998-8050.

Leonard and Baldwin also told commissioners that small businesses can purchase hand sanitizer, face masks, gloves and thermometers. This comes about from a bulk purchase program, done jointly by Otter Tail County and the Lakes Country Association.

Purchases can be made via www.ottertaillakescountry.com. The email is info@ottertailcountry and the phone number is 800-423-4571.

Lake lot proposals approved

County commissioners approved two lake lot proposals following the recommendation of the county planning commission.

One application, for a conditional use permit, included a preliminary plat titled “Silent Ridge Drive” and consisting of eight single-family residential lots at East Silent Lake in Dora Township.

This property is between Pelican Rapids and Dent and north of Highway 108.

The second conditional use permit application included five single-family residential lots at Franklin Lake in Dunn Township, northeast of Pelican Rapids.

Approval came for property at Labrador Beach Road.

The planning commission includes 10 members who are appointed by the county board of commissioners. Duties of the planning commission include consideration of projects in shoreland areas.