Danielle Killey is the city reporter for the Republican Eagle, where she has worked since 2011. She graduated from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities with a journalism degree.
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Seeing advertisements at local ballparks came a step closer to reality Monday when the City Council approved a signage policy. The council passed a set of rules and regulations for advertisements at fields at A.P. Anderson Park, Red Wing High School and Twin Bluff Middle School. The main Athletic Field has its own policy. Last spring the council changed its zoning ordinance to allow ads at the ballparks in an attempt to bring in revenue for maintenance and improvements.
A sidewalk project on Hallquist and Eunice avenues is drawing strong opinions on both sides but ultimately will move forward for now, Red Wing City Council members decided. At Monday night's meeting the council unanimously approved plans and asked for bids on the project. The issue will come before the council again for a vote after bids are received, likely at the second March meeting. In December the council agreed that a sidewalk project on Eunice and Hallquist avenues should move forward after being delayed for years.
Mirroring Republicans across the state, Red Wing GOP members chose Rick Santorum in their presidential straw poll Tuesday. "I'm pleased to know we're on the same page," Goodhue County GOP Chair Teresa Whitson said of Minnesota Republicans. About 150 people gathered in the Red Wing High School cafeteria Tuesday to vote for their favorite GOP candidate, discuss resolutions and choose delegates for upcoming meetings. Santorum's win wasn't much of a surprise to Whitson. "It's pretty consistent with what I have been hearing," she said.
A local group is organizing to defeat a proposed constitutional amendment that would ban same-sex marriage in Minnesota. Red Wing Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays will hold an event Saturday to bring together those who want to fight the issue that will be on ballots in the November election. Those interested in working with PFLAG can come to the event, find out more information and provide their contact information for upcoming efforts. "As things develop between now and the election we will be able to connect," PFLAG member Bruce Ause said.
The area of track where a Canadian Pacific freight train derailed Sunday morning has been repaired and traffic has resumed. The line was opened just after 6 p.m. Monday, nearly a day and a half after 19 empty cars left the tracks near the Bay Point Park area. Two of the cars fell off the tracks completely. Canadian Pacific is working to determine the cause of the derailment, spokesman Ed Greenberg said. "It's still too early to speculate on the cause," he said.
In the first month of 2012, Red Wing already has seen two structure fires. On Jan. 21, space heaters apparently overloaded the electrical system at a house on South Park Street and caused a fire. And a few weeks ago, a Red Wing home on Green Street was engulfed by an overnight fire. All occupants got out safely, but the home was a total loss. The fire marshal is still working to determine the cause. The fires came after a year that had a record low number of such fires, Red Wing Fire Department Chief Tom Schneider said.
ST. PAUL -- A wolf hunting and trapping season in Minnesota was one the first issues to be debated in the 2012 Minnesota legislative session. Both the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and Rep. David Dill, DFL-Crane Lake, have introduced potential parameters for gray wolf hunting and trapping seasons that would begin this year. The discussion came a day before the state takes over control of wolf management after the animal's removal from the federal Endangered Species list.
As the next barge season begins to appear on the horizon, U.S. Lock & Dam No. 3 near Red Wing is expecting another regular season. Last year, numbers were down slightly compared to the 2010 season, but overall it was a pretty normal season, Vanessa Hamer of U.S. Corps of Engineers said. "We just consider it normal fluctuation," she said. The season length and traffic numbers differ from year to year and vary depending on weather and factors such as high water, ice and construction at different sites. At Lock & Dam No.
As the 2012 Minnesota legislative session quickly approaches, Red Wing Sen. John Howe is preparing for his second year in office. He returns to the Capitol for a session legislators are hoping to keep short after last year's shutdown and budget negotiations that seeped into the summer. But despite 2011's difficulties, Howe said he has enjoyed working as a senator and all it entails. "I learned a lot," Howe said. "One of the best things about representing a district is being able to travel around and talk to people." Howe, a Republican, took on many roles in his first year.
ST. PAUL -- Republican legislators hope to use the upcoming Minnesota legislative session to bring state government reform ideas to fruition. In what they are calling Reform 2.0, GOP leaders Thursday announced a set of proposals that would reduce the size of government, cut back on business regulations and revamp education and health care. "Some of the things in the past were nibbling around the edges," House Speaker Kurt Zellers, R-Maple Grove, said at a news conference.