Scott Wente has been editor at the South Washington County Bulletin since 2011. He worked as a reporter at other Forum Communications newspapers from 2003 to 2011. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-River Falls.
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Space constraints, an industry transformation and - oddly enough - the struggling economy prompted the Newport Napa Auto Parts store to expand to a new, larger facility. Standing in the new store last week, owner Steve Linn said the auto parts retailer had outgrown its former Hastings Avenue location. At the same time, there is stronger demand for replacement auto parts. With those factors in mind, Linn Companies built and recently opened the new Napa store at 1586 Hastings Ave., across the parking lot from the store's old space.
The District 833 School Board on Thursday approved the expulsion of a Park High School student through winter break of this school year. Board members also approved the expulsion of a Woodbury High School student for the rest of the 2011-12 school year. Citing data privacy laws, Superintendent Mark Porter did not say what led to the expulsions.
School District 833 property taxpayers are expected to chip in less to pay back district-borrowed funds over the next three years. The School Board on Thursday approved the refinancing of bonds totaling $6.46 million that will result in a savings of over $364,000, administrators said. The district cannot spend that money on other programs; state law requires that the savings be used to reduce taxes paid by property owners in the district. Lower interest rates gained through refinancing will reduce the annual levy for 2012 to 2014 by an average of $123,000.
Steve Lagoon said he is ready to use his classroom experience on the South Washington County School Board. Lagoon, one of seven candidates seeking three seats in the Nov. 8 election, is in his fourth year as a substitute teacher and paraprofessional. "I think I know what will work and what won't work," Lagoon said. One area Lagoon said he would focus on is changing how schools handle chronically disruptive students.
The owner of the Sure Lock Motel in Newport was arrested after a more than six-hour standoff with police late Sunday following an alleged felony assault at the Hastings Avenue motel. Police arrested Roger A. Berres, 48, shortly before midnight on suspicion of second-degree criminal sexual conduct -- which, according to jail booking information, involved a female under the age of 13 -- kidnapping, disturbing the peace, domestic assault and obstructing the legal process. Police declined to provide any details of the alleged assault.
Accidents A 44-year-old St. Paul Park man was injured when he lost control of his motorcycle while driving at 2:20 p.m. Oct. 7 at 103rd Street and Grey Cloud Island Trail. The motorcycle slid on its side. The man was transported to Regions Hospital to be treated for injuries. A 38-year-old Oakdale man was cited for inattentive driving after police say he caused a three-vehicle crash around 1:30 p.m. Oct. 8 at the intersection of 70th Street and Goodview Avenue.
Theft A 22-year-old Cottage Grove woman was cited for theft of service after police were called around 5 a.m. Oct. 8 to a residence in the 8100 block of Ingleside Avenue. A taxi driver had dropped the woman off at her home. She went inside but did not pay the full cab fare. Police then ticketed the woman. A 15-year-old St. Paul Park boy was referred to the Youth Service Bureau for theft after police were called Oct. 11 to Park High School on a report of a stolen iPod. A Cottage Grove resident reported Oct.
Mike Marier has been composing music for years. Now he must waiting a few more days before learning whether he will have a lot more to compose. Marier, a Cottage Grove resident, is one of five finalists in a competition to score the full-length independent film "The Storm Within." The winner is being chosen based on an online voting contest. People can listen to the pieces and select their favorite until 11 p.m. Oct. 25. Marier, 35, learned of the contest while surfing the American Composers Forum website for professional opportunities.
A single drawing turned into the first published graphic novel for Lance Ward. Ward, a St. Paul Park artist, drew one illustration and his imagination took off, giving him all sorts of ideas to expand that initial science fiction-themed drawing. "I said, 'That's it, I have to do this,'" Ward said.
Two men likely face criminal charges for allegedly breaking into the former Rush nightclub building in Cottage Grove and stealing wiring valued at $68. Police arrested Michael Howlett, 27, of Pepin, Wis., and Aaron Hurlburt, 29, after officers were tipped off to a suspicious vehicle early in the morning on Oct. 8. According to the police report: Police were dispatched shortly after 3 a.m. to the 8400 block of Grospoint Avenue on a report of a suspicious vehicle in the area. Police found the vehicle, but it was parked legally and unoccupied.