St. Joseph

$4 million in aid goes to Wetterling Center

The state of Minnesota has made a $4 million grant to the city of St. Joseph toward the design and construction of a community center to be known as the Jacob Wetterling Recreation Center.

The money, contained in the $1.9 billion bonding bill passed last month by the Legislature, would cover about one-fourth of the project's estimated $16 million cost. City officials have been working on the project for years.

Jacob Wetterling was 11 when he was abducted near his Stearns County home in 1989. In 2016, Danny Heinrich confessed to kidnapping and killing Jacob. In a plea agreement, he was sentenced to 20 years in prison on child pornography charges but was not charged in Jacob's abduction and death.

john Reinan


New mayor-elect turns down the job

Eric Urbas, who won Ely's mayoral election after dropping out of the race, told city officials Wednesday that he would not accept the position.

The 32-year-old defeated three-term incumbent Mayor Chuck Novak by 125 votes. Urbas halted his campaign in August, citing health problems, but his name remained on the November ballot.

Ely will hold a special mayoral election, the timing of which will be discussed at the City Council's Dec. 1 meeting.

Katie Galioto


County hires 2 nurses for COVID-19 cases

Brown County is set to hire two nurses to deal with COVID-19 cases. At its meeting this week, the County Board of Commissioners is expected to approve the hiring of the nurses to handle COVID-19 case investigations and contact tracing. One nurse will fill a permanent position while the other is slated to work through February.

As with many Minnesota counties, Brown County has seen a rapid increase in positive tests for the illness caused by the coronavirus. The county's most recent rate of positive test results was 5.2%, below the statewide average of 7%, according to figures released Thursday by the Minnesota Department of Health.


East Grand Forks

Board nixes COVID stimulus requests

The Economic Development Authority rejected two businesses' requests for reimbursement under COVID-19 stimulus programs. Anytime Fitness sought $1,100 for a pressure toilet and the CherryBerry yogurt bar sought $5,600 for a safe.

john Reinan