Kim Ukura began working at the Farmington/Rosemount Independent Town Pages in August of 2016. Previously, she served as the editor of the Morris Sun Tribune for five years. She graduated from the University of Minnesota, Morris in 2008 with degrees in English and journalism. She earned a master's degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 2010. Prior to returning to Morris to work at the Sun Tribune, she worked in trade publishing. She has been recognized by the Minnesota Newspaper Association for human interest, multimedia, business and public affairs reporting.
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Observant readers will have noticed a number of changes to the overall design of this week's Morris Sun Tribune.
MORRIS — Members of the Morris Area School Board had largely positive comments for Superintendent Rick Lahn during his first performance review with the district. The board met for one hour in a closed session during their regular meeting on Monday, July 18 to complete a performance review for the superintendent. This week, board Chairman Dick Metzger released a summary of the discussion, as is required by the Minnesota Open Meetings Law.
MORRIS — Morris area kids got the chance to test out their cycling skills and learn more about the rules of the road during the Morris Police Department's annual Bike Rodeo on Tuesday, Aug. 9 in Morris. Around 20 kids braved the hot weather and high humidity to attend the event in the Morris Area Elementary School parking lot. After hot dogs, Hi-C, and cookies, the MPD gave away four bikes and a number of bike accessories to participants.
MORRIS — On Tuesday, the Stevens County Board of Commissioners reviewed a first draft of a policy regarding how the board will review county funds contributed to community projects. The policy is in response to a project in the city of Hancock regarding a tax forfeited property in the city. The county is collaborating with the city and a private developer on a grant to demolish the old Owl's Nest property and three other buildings on main street. The grant application was submitted this week, and winners will be notified in September or October.
MORRIS — Keith Davison, chairman of the Morris Municipal Airport Advisory Committee, told the Stevens County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday that the group is looking at extending the length of the runway at the airport to accommodate larger planes. "This is the only airport in the county, and it's very important — it's more important than a lot of people realize," said Davison. Davison said Superior Industries is currently the biggest user at the airport. The company has three planes that they house at a hangar at the airport, Davison said.
MORRIS — The filing period to declare candidacy for the Morris City Council and the Morris Area School Board opens at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 2 and closes on Tuesday, Aug. 16 at 5 p.m. The terms of city council members Kevin Wohlers and Bill Storck are up for election this November. Candidates interested in running for the city council should do so at Morris City Hall (609 Oregon Avenue).
MORRIS — Following the retirement of a long-time staff member, the city of Morris has been forced to reassess how road maintenance projects are completed. On Tuesday, the Morris City Council voted to seek bids for a series of "reclaim" projects to fix the road surface of several areas throughout the city. The city's road maintenance program — different from the major street and utility improvements like the current Oregon Avenue project — relies on funding collected from city residents through the use of franchise fees.
MORRIS — Modern farmers have many choices to make as they try to balance profitability with conservation efforts. Scientists with the North Central Soil Conservation Research Lab highlighted their research on the challenges and benefits of one farming innovation, cover crops, during this year's Field Day on Thursday, June 21 in Morris. Several experiments in Morris and at partner sites looked at the effect of cover crops on nutrient and water efficiency in traditional cropping systems.
MORRIS — Stevens County will save approximately $740,000 in debt service payments as a result of refinancing the county's existing debt for the 2009 courthouse remodeling project. In June, the Stevens County Board of Commissioners voted to refinance a current lease bond into a General Obligation Capital Improvement Bond, essentially repacking the debt to get a better interest rate. The board then hired Northland Securities to broker a negotiated sale of the bonds.
MORRIS — A Morris man was charged with multiple controlled substance crimes after three sales of heroin to an undercover agent in Morris. Anthony Baker, 52, was arraigned in Stevens County District Court on Thursday, July 15 Baker is facing two charges of second degree sale and possession of drugs, and one fourth degree controlled substance crime. These charges arose from multiple sales of suspected heroin and other controlled substances to an undercover officer in Morris, Police Chief Ross Tiegs said.