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Thursday, Apr. 28, 2016

Larrabee FD seeks funds from Supervisors

Thursday, December 23, 2010

On Tuesday the Larrabee Fire Department was proud to welcome a slightly used Pumper Truck that they recently purchased with help from a USDA grant. Pictured in the front row, left to right, Jeff Friedrichsen, Mike Schwabe of Toyne, Inc. of Breda, Iowa, Ray Mullins and Jeremiah Mullins. Back row, left to right, are: Jason Ducommun and Paul Riector. Photo by Mike Leckband
Brian Freed and Ray Mullins of the Larrabee Fire Department addressed the Cherokee County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday for a funding request on a Pumper Truck that was recently purchased by the Larrabee Fire Association.

The total purchase price for the truck was $242,855.

The Larrabee Fire Association recently received a USDA grant in the amount of $189,000, which left the department with a $52,855 shortfall. However, Freed stated that the department has $14,000 in savings to go towards the truck.

Freed told the Board that the LFA had looked at what their needs were and did a lot of shopping around before they found a slightly used International 4400 from Toyne, Inc. of Breda, Iowa that had been used as a demo unit and had a total of 8,000 miles on the vehicle.

Freed went on to say that he also believes that having good equipment and facilities help smaller fire stations draw recruits. In previous years, the Board had allocated $15,000 to help with the expansion of the LFD, which effectively doubled the size of the station along with supplying a meeting room and small kitchenette.

Freed stated that since that construction project has been completed that it has been used for many different functions, including hosting Larrabee City Council meetings, as well as training exercises for the LFD, along with the Cherokee County Sheriff's office which has used the facility.

The Board told Freed and Mullins that they would help some how.

After Freed and Mullins left, the Board began discussing how much to allocate to the LFD. Supervisor Mark Leeds stated that they always talk amongst them self that there is a need to keep and attract younger members to these small community and suggested that the Board kick-in $20,000.

A motion was called and the Board approved $20,000 to the LFD.

Also addressing the Board were Don Pitts, Ken Slater and Bud Clow who gave the Board an update on the current situation of the Pellet Plant at the Cherokee Landfill.

The Plant had recently received the news that its biggest costumer Poet ethanol producer of Sioux Falls, S.D. had reduced its order from 16 tons a year to four tons a year.

Stricter admission demands by the EPA, along with cheaper methane gas prices has forced that company to reformulate its mixture percent and therefore create less demand for the pellets.

Those same EPA demands have also affected the Landfill Pellet Plant itself. When the plant first began to operate it met all requirements. However those requirements have changed so a new test will have to be done in the spring to determine if the plant is in compliance. If not, there are several options to be done according to Pitts.

The plant would have to put a bag filtering system to catch emissions or have a scrubber that would practical clean the smokestack. The two most naturally occurring elements that the EPA has made stronger regulations for are lime and chlorine.

Due to the lack of customers and the spring testing, the plant will effectively be closed until this May, stated Pitts.

Clow and Slater stated that they are currently working with the Cherokee County Economical Development Corporation to find new clients, along with focusing on Cherokee County Business that use boilers to demonstrate what can be done with these pellets that are made from recycled material from the Cherokee County Landfill and can produce 75 tons a day at full operation. One ton of the pellets generate 8,000 BTUs.

Cherokee County Attorney Ryan Kolpin addressed the Board to inform them that while seeking information on a County-owned piece of property near the Cherokee Rural Water offices, that he and Cherokee County Auditor Kris Glienke had discovered several more small parcels owned by the County.

For the past year the Board has been trying to locate and get County-owned property back on to the tax rolls.

The problem with those small pieces of land near the Cherokee Rural Water is that the County entered into an agreement nearly 40 years ago with the original property owner to mine gravel from those locations.

It was agreed at the time that when the County was done with the land that it would go back to the owners Merle and William Robinson.

The Robinsons are deceased so the County now would have to deal the Robinson's estate.

The next steps are to contact the heir of the estate, said Kolpin, and then turn the property back over to the prime beneficiary.

Kolpin then addressed the Spencer Hospital Contract for Mental Health Services. He stated his opinion to the Board, which was that he was not happy with the deal but advises it for one year. If there are Cherokee County residents who have to have service provided by SHMHS a cheaper rate is supplied with the County if contracted.

Kolpin also suggested the same for the proposed Synergy Center Contract for substance abuse services. The Board took Kolpin's advice under consideration and the contracts were tabled until a later time.

In other business, the Board passed a resolution to amend the FY11 DOT budget by the amount of $601,000.

The Board also passed an amendment to increase the FY11 Public Health Emergency Response Contract by $20,223.

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