Eagan is holding a series of workshops on the future of cable service, community media and technology. The focus group workshops will be conducted by The Buske Group, a nationally recognized public policy consulting firm hired to help the city identify community needs and interests.

Residents are invited to attend any of the sessions to offer their ideas and learn about the opportunities the city now has to provide new technological resources for the community.

The format of each workshop will be identical but discussion will focus on different topics, including local government, the arts, heritage organizations, health and community services, education, faith-based organizations, neighborhood associations and businesses.

Most sessions will be held at the Eagan Community Center, 1501 Central Pkwy. To see a full schedule and register, go to www.cityofeagan.com/index.php/communications/more-than-cable.

Dakota County

Parking at Bud's Landing

When Dakota County purchased Bud's Landing in Spring Lake Park Reserve near Hastings about 18 months ago, the former owner asked the county to allow the people who have always duck hunted from the landing to keep coming. The county agreed, but last year it found overparking of the area by about 50 people.

This year daily parking permits are required to park at the landing. Nine permits will be available each day from Oct. 22 to Dec. 28, at a cost of $10 plus tax. The permit will grant the holder parking rights at the landing from 4 a.m. to 10 p.m. for the day of the permit.

If a permit holder arrives at the landing and cannot find parking, he or she would call a park ranger and report the problem at 911.

For information or to apply for a daily parking permit, visit www.dakotacounty.us/parks and search waterfowl hunting.

County keeps AAA rating

Dakota County retained its AAA bond rating under new criteria used by Standard & Poor's rating service. Of the 3,143 counties in the United States, fewer than 100 counties earn the rating, which is a measure of strong financial management, the county said in a news release.

The rating reflects S&P's assessment that the local economy is strong, the county budget flexible and the county's use of "very strong management conditions with strong policies and practices."

Moody's Investors Service also affirmed the AAA rating and said it reflects Dakota County's diversified tax base, well-managed financial operations, healthy reserve levels and low debt burden, the county said.

In 2013, Dakota County has the lowest per capita county tax rate in the metro area.

For more information about the rating, call county Finance Director Stephanie Shawback at 651-438-8318.


Free CPR class offered

The Burnsville Fire Department will give a free one-hour CPR class and materials to any individual, group or organization wishing to learn the lifesaving technique.

The class is from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 15, at Burnsville City Hall, 100 Civic Center Parkway.

To sign up for the class, which is open to people of all ages, call 952-895-4575.


MnDOT marks bike trail

The Minnesota Department of Transportation has completed the installation of signs on a segment of the 10-state Mississippi River Trail between Hastings and the Iowa border.

In the first of three years of installing "MRT" signs, phase one was completed between August and September directing bicyclists along 148 miles between Hastings and the Iowa border. Signs along the Hasting-to-Elk River segment of the bikeway will be installed in 2014, and the segment between Elk River and Lake Itasca in 2015.

Minnesota's segment of the Mississippi River Trail follows the river roughly 600 miles from its source at Itasca State Park to the Iowa border. Located largely on road shoulders, the route also includes segments of scenic state, regional and local trails.

Total miles of the route, which sometimes runs on both sides of the river, comes to more than 800 miles. It is Minnesota's first state bikeway.

Scott County

Watershed updates plans

The Vermillion River Watershed Joint Powers Organization is updating its priorities for managing the water resources in the 335-square-mile Vermillion River Watershed in Dakota County and southeastern Scott County.

To begin discussion of the management that will govern the organization for 10 years starting in 2015, the watershed organization will hold a public meeting from 3 to 6 p.m. Oct. 22 at the Dakota County Extension and Conservation Center, 4100 W. 220th St., Farmington.

There will be a presentation from 3 to 4:30 p.m. followed by an open house until 6 p.m. No registration is required. Written comments can be mailed to 14955 Galaxie Av., Apple Valley, MN 55124. Comments may also be e-mailed to Mark Zabel at mark.zabel@co.dakota.mn.us or Melissa Bokman at mbokman@co.scott.mn.us.

Staff reports