Moose Lake Star Gazette - Serving Carlton and Pine Counties Since 1895

By Dan Reed
Moose Lake Star-Gazette 

County board looks to sell building on historic registry

 


The Carlton County Economic Development Director Connie Christensen was instructed by the Carlton County Board of Commissioners to call for RFP’s (Request for Proposals) on the sale of the Shaw Memorial Building, now the home of the Carlton County Historical Society, in Cloquet. With a unanimous vote by the Commissioners, the action came at the Adjourned Meeting on May 29.

The Shaw Memorial Building is a Renaissance Revival style brick building built just after the 1918 Fire to replace an earlier library structure on the same site. George Shaw, a timber baron of the period, convinced many of his colleagues to help build the pre-fire library. Shaw’s daughters contributed funds for the current building. The building was listed on the National Register of Historical Buildings in 1985. Soon a new Cloquet Library was built by the Garfield School and the Carlton County Historical Society moved to their present home.

Major water damage to the structure occurred in 2012 flooding. It is now estimated that it will take at least one million dollars to repair that damage and help the long term structural integrity of the building. At least one party has shown some interest in making an offer. Three weeks of publishing notice is needed before any action may be taken by the commissioners.

Final payment was made to Ulland Brothers for the completion of the CSAH 12 and Sand Lake Road projects. The contract went from $1.2 million to a final $1.5 million. Extra work was needed to remedy heaving and settling culverts.

This year is the 100th Anniversary of the American Legion. The county board approved a resolution congratulating the local American Legion posts and declaring August 24, 2018 as American Legion Day.

The Big Lake Golf Club has had its restaurant and bar closed and now has its liquor license formally revoked. Health and Human Services Director Dave Lee reported that additional staff will continue to be needed to submit information for MNSure users because the MET system required by the MN Health and Human Services continues to struggle and takes a long time to fill the required paperwork.

During an earlier afternoon meeting between the finance committee and the full board of commissioners, the rising costs of the benefit package were discussed for the 400+ Carlton County employees and the retirees. County Coordinator Dennis Genereau commented, “The benefits provided to Carlton County employees and retirees are far and above of what other counties provide in our area.”

Commissioner Gary Peterson then said, “Why don’t we have a cost analysis of salary and benefits compared to other counties of our same size? We have rising costs in health insurance coverage and that should be addressed during contract negotiations.” Genereau said he would have those numbers available to the board shortly.

 

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