Orlowsky named acting district head

The Shakopee school board has named Dave Orlowsky, the district's data and testing administrator, as a temporary replacement for Superintendent Gary Anger, who died of cancer last Sunday at the age of 53.

The board asked district administrators to apply for a temporary variance for Orlowsky since he doesn't have licensure as a superintendent.

Anger was hired by the district in 2017 as interim superintendent to follow Superintendent Rod Thompson, who left office after being accused of embezzling more than $70,000 from the district.

Just months into the new job, Anger was diagnosed with small cell carcinoma and began cancer treatment.

The school board's personnel committee will develop a job posting for the position.

Erin Adler


County officials end Northstar job shuttle

A pilot program offering shuttle service between Fridley's Northstar commuter train station and area employers is ending Tuesday.

Anoka County officials reviewed the program's results at a committee meeting on Aug. 20 and opted to let the service end. They said about 6 to 18 workers on average took the shuttle daily, numbers that fell short of expectations.

The yearlong pilot aimed to boost ridership on the beleaguered commuter rail line, which has battled slumps in ridership and on-time performance since it debuted in 2009.

The pilot was funded by a $240,000 federal grant and $60,000 from the county.

"We will continue to explore other existing programs to try and save that last mile connection," said County Engineer Doug Fischer.

Hannah Covington


County gets funds to help laid-off workers

The Washington County WorkForce Center will receive a $210,000 grant from the state Department of Employment and Economic Development to provide employment and support services to workers who lost their jobs when Herberger's closed in Stillwater last week.

Herberger's parent company, Bon-Ton Stores Inc., is closing its stores nationwide, including 20 locations in Minnesota. The WorkForce Center will help about 50 workers find new jobs, offering career services, training and support.

The Employment Department awarded grants to service providers that have nearby store locations.

Mara Klecker


Bridges at Centennial Lakes to be replaced

Edina will replace pedestrian bridges at Centennial Lakes Park that cannot be used by wheelchairs or strollers.

The bridges, located at the north and south ends of the lake, have been in the park since its opening in 1991. Their stairs are "almost vertical," according to a news release, and their steel membranes are deteriorating.

Crews will begin to build the new bridges on Sept. 10. They will be made of steel and concrete with slip-resistant decks, widened walkways and LED lighting. Work is expected to be finished in early December and final landscaping will be done in the spring, according to the city.

Paths around the lake will remain open during construction.

Miguel Otárola