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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The city of Cottage Grove plans to commit nearly $2 million in special property tax revenue to help redevelop the vacant Home Depot building. Facing a tight deadline, the city is pushing a plan to pool $1.9 million in property tax revenue collected from three existing TIF redevelopment areas and put it toward construction of an LA Fitness and a couple of smaller retail businesses at the former Home Depot site, located at East Point Douglas Road and 80th Street. Typically, property tax revenue from separate TIF districts cannot be pooled to support one redevelopment project, but the city want
Friends and former teammates of Nicholas Bibeau said the Park High School graduate and former swim team captain was an outgoing role model and hard worker who had a special ability to click with people. "He was just a very good person and a very good friend and I always admired him," fellow 2011 Park graduate Chris Isely said. "I'm going to miss him a lot." Friends and former classmates were recalling their good times with Bibeau after learning that he was killed in a car crash Thursday near the Cottage Grove-Woodbury border.
The South Washington County School Board violated state law in its handling of Superintendent Mark Porter's final performance evaluation, according to a state opinion. The nonbinding opinion sought by the South Washington County Bulletin concluded that the District 833 School Board broke the state's Open Meeting Law when it did not publicly summarize its evaluation of Porter at a meeting immediately following the closed-door workshop used to conduct that evaluation.
Werner Electric Supply can build a wind turbine on its property in the city's industrial park, the Cottage Grove City Council decided. The company got council approval Wednesday of a variance it needed to move forward with the project, which it has proposed as a way to cut building energy costs. Werner plans a 20-kilowatt wind turbine with a 99-foot monopole and a 30-foot rotor, creating a maximum height of about 114 feet.
Cottage Grove residents living near the proposed Walmart have a shopping list worth of concerns about the project. Homeowners told Walmart officials they are worried about insufficient landscaping around the store, increased traffic and criminal activity, light pollution, 'round-the-clock noise, decreased property values and other issues. Several dozen residents turned out for the informational meeting May 1 at the Cottage Grove Ice Arena, where Walmart displayed project drawings and fielded questions on its plan to build a 177,000-square-foot Supercenter store adjacent to the Cottage View D
The main Cottage Grove post office soon could be sold and its customer services transferred across town. The U.S. Postal Service has a pending sale of the building at 7130 East Point Douglas Road, spokesman Pete Nowacki confirmed. "The building is not officially sold," Nowacki said. "We're working with a buyer. We are hoping to close a sale." Nowacki did not identify the buyer or say whether a closing was set. However, if the deal goes through, the postal service hopes to consolidate its Cottage Grove operations at its annex facility on 7523 95th St.
The next South Washington County Schools superintendent may come from outside Minnesota. As the District 833 School Board prepares to interview schools chief candidates, the consultant leading the search said there were top applicants from within Minnesota and from other states. That type of mix of candidates is typical for a school system the size of District 833, said Ken Dragseth, a consultant with School Exec Connect, the firm hired to lead the superintendent search. School staff and the community should know in two weeks who will lead the district beginning in July. The search consult
A fire early Saturday damaged multiple apartment units at a Newport complex. Crews from four south Washington County fire departments responded about 6:15 a.m. to a fire at a multi-level apartment building at 112 Mark Court near 10th Avenue. The complex has 24 units and 20 were rented.
A mother and daughter escaped a Cottage Grove house fire without injuries Saturday. The homeowner at 8120 66th St. Ct. detected a fire shortly before 9 a.m. She got her daughter safely out of the house and then went back in to try to use the phone to call 911. When it didn't work, she went to a neighbor's house and called for help, said Cottage Grove Fire Marshall PJ McMahon. The fire was limited to the attic, but caused structural damage. "There'll be significant damage to the house," McMahon said. Nobody was injured in the fire.