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Nearly all Pierce County residents who responded to a recent survey know the county has a fair in Ellsworth every August, but about 25% said they haven't attended the 4-day event even once in the last five years. "There is an incredibly high awareness of the fair," said UW-River Falls Survey Research Center Director David Trechter.
Environmentalist and peace activist Alice Pemble, town of Clifton, died Monday at Hudson Hospital.
ELLSWORTH: Last week the Pierce County Board amended its floodplain ordinance and adopted a zoning amendment that will allow campgrounds to build permanent shelters. The major change in the floodplain ordinance exempts flood-proofing measures from a standard that limits improvements to 50% of the value of the structure, said Administrative Coordinator Mark Schroeder.
ELLSWORTH: Ron Anderson, a four-year veteran of the Pierce County Board, was elected its chairman when new supervisors met to organize Tuesday morning. Anderson, who lives in the town of Martell, and River Falls Supervisor Rod Rommel were both nominated for the chairman position. Anderson defeated Rommel on an 11-6 vote. Anderson was patrol superintendent for the county Highway Department before retiring about four years ago.
ELLSWORTH: After nearly 15 months of discussion, Pierce County officials expect to have a pilot home detention system for county prisoners in place around June 1. Sheriff Everett Muhlhausen said Friday that he is still fine-tuning a contract with a private firm to keep track of prisoners with a global positioning system (GPS).
Elise O'Meara Nooney - a former Navy nurse, retired library circulation supervisor and mother of five grown children - has announced that she is a candidate for the District 10 state Senate seat now held by Republican Sheila Harsdorf. O'Meara Nooney, 61, River Falls, is the second Democrat to declare candidacy for the seat. Liz Jones, Woodville, announced earlier this year that she is running. The filing period for the seat opens June 1. A primary will apparently be necessary in September. The election will be in November. "We're pretty much detached from Madison.
St. Croix County's largest property taxpayers are "big-box" retailers while Pierce County's are out-of-county landlords and developers, according to information released recently by county treasurers. The Fleet Farm, Home Depot, Target, Menards, Wal-Mart and EconoFoods stores in Hudson take six of the top 10 taxpayer slots in St. Croix County, according to Treasurer Cheryl Slind.
ELLSWORTH: After draining a $360,000 budget for boarding Pierce County prisoners in other jails, the County Board transferred another $21,000 to cover 2003 boarding costs. Last week the county supervisors voted to cover the $20,670 deficit by taking money from the General Fund. In 2002 Pierce spent over $400,000 to keep its prisoners in other counties' jails. Since then county administrators have negotiated a lower per-day price with other counties. Pierce County contracts with Pepin and Dunn counties to board prisoners.
ELLSWORTH: There were amendments to amendments as the Pierce County Board - in the final meeting before a new board is seated - restructured county committees. Following lengthy discussion and numerous votes at last week's board meeting, these were the end results: The Finance and Personnel committees were combined to one seven-member committee. The board chairman and vice chairman will automatically serve on this group. The other five members will be elected from the board. Citizen members of standing committees will be paid per diems.
ELLSWORTH: The Pierce County Fair Committee is looking for a consultant to develop a master plan for the county fairgrounds in Ellsworth. The intent is to develop a plan for expanding the use of the fairgrounds during non-fair time and tie that into to potential facility improvements, said Administrative Coordinator Mark Schroeder. He said there have also been inquires from groups that want new or expanded fairground buildings and the committee would like a plan to accommodate those requests. The fairgrounds need "significant redevelopment," said Fair Coordinator Diane Bau