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Judy Sturgill waited until Christmas to receive her birthday gift: a photo of with her grandson and great-grandson, all three of whom turned 19 in 2017. Sturgill, born Feb. 29, 1940, has only celebrated her birthday on the actual leap year day 19 times. Her grandson Jaden Bingen and great-grandson Michael Sturgill were born about six months apart, both turning 19 years old on their birthdays this year. Judy Sturgill revelled in the idea of being the same age as the two boys all year, finally getting a moment to get the trio of 19-year-olds together on Christmas day.
The Washington County Board approved pay increases for the county attorney, administrator and sheriff at the Dec. 19 board meeting. Washington County Attorney Pete Orput will receive a nearly 8 percent increase from his 2017 salary of $159,609. The 2018 salary is set at $171,580. Compared to other metro county attorneys, his salary was “significantly low in relation to the marketplace,” County Administrator Molly O’Rourke said.
Dozens of glowing children slid down the hill at St. Paul Park City Hall on Dec. 28 for the second annual Glow in the Dark Sledding event.
Newport is reaching across the river to South St. Paul to combat odor emissions from the the most complained about facilities: Sanimax and the Washington/ Ramsey Recycling and Energy Center. The City Council is sending a draft odor ordinance back to the Planning Commission and for staff to revise and refine the draft based on an ordinance recently written by South St. Paul. "We looked to the South St. Paul ordinance, which is kind of state of the art, and did a Newport ordinance that is very similar," Planner Sherri Buss said.
Local sanitation companies are raising rates and seeking new locations to haul some waste by Jan. 1 in preparation of new county waste guidelines. The Ramsey/Washington County Recycling and Energy Center in Newport approved in September new waste designation protocols that will begin in the new year. The guidelines require waste haulers to bring all waste collected in Washington and Ramsey counties to the center, but also require all waste from outside counties go elsewhere.
Washington County, along with about 20 other Minnesota counties, announced civil action against major pharmaceutical companies Nov. 30 for the sale and manufacture of opioid drugs. The counties will file separate lawsuits, but Washington County Attorney Pete Orput said they are all working in conjunction to launch the suits. Prosecutors say the lawsuits are a response to the rise in opioid abuse and an attempt to hold pharmaceutical companies responsible for their products and marketing.
Washington County, along with about 20 other Minnesota counties, announced civil action against major pharmaceutical companies Nov. 30 for the sale and manufacture of opioid drugs.
NEWPORT, Minn. — An unusual culprit is being blamed for wreaking havoc this fall. The city-owned properties between Cedar Lane and the Mississippi River have seen at least 12 trees up to 75 or 100 feet tall chewed down by beavers, Public Works Superintendent Bruce Hanson said, and many more left half-felled. "It's to the point I believe it's becoming a safety concern," Hanson said at the Nov. 2 meeting. "So many (trees) are girdled that I believe there's an urgency to go down there and take care of it. ... There are a lot of areas that deal we this ... we just haven't before."
A split city council voted to approve construction with conditions on the Bailey Meadows development planned for the northeast corner of Newport. The development will consist of just under 200 single-family and villa homes on about 64 acres.
Amid an east metro tuberculosis outbreak, officials say the few cases present in Washington County are unlikely to spread. The county treated two cases last year, and are working with three active tuberculosis infections this year that had been contracted before a recent Ramsey County outbreak began.