YMC property appreciates

GRANITE?FALLS – The Yellow Medicine County Board was briefed by County Assessor Connie Erickson on the state of property values in the county at its regular meeting on Tuesday.

According to Erickson, the estimated value of agricultural property, including land, buildings and facilities, increased 33 percent countywide in 2013. Last year, the increase was 20 percent.

Residential property values increased 2.68 percent in 2013 versus 1.89 percent in 2012. Commercial and industrial property showed no change in either this year or last.

New construction was down somewhat, only $11,484,000 in 2013 as opposed to $15,733,000, in 2012, a decline of $4,250,000. Erickson attributed the higher figure in 2012 to last year’s Prairie Grain expansion.

In other business, the board approved the request of Mary Potter, social services supervisor of children’s services, to hire an additional social worker at a starting salary of $3,777 per month.

The board voted to reappoint Commissioner Greg Renneke to his position on the Yellow Medicine County Housing and Redevelopment Authority Board of Commissioners. Renneke originally accepted the position after the unexpected death of Commissioner Richard Wambeke last year. The five-year term was due to expire on June 15.

The board also voted to advertise a vacancy on the board for the remainder of Commissioner Catherine Thomas’ turn which expires June 15, 2014. Thomas resigned in March, citing conflicts with her work schedule.

The board scheduled a tax abatement hearing for 10 a.m. July 9 during the regularly scheduled board meeting for the Subway restaurant built in 2011 in Canby by 4Lancers, Inc. The firm is asking for a 10-year tax abatement of $1,100 per year. The board had previously denied the request for a hearing but agreed to reconsider when representatives of 4Lancers told the board they had originally built the restaurant on the mistaken impression there was a TIF agreement in place with the city of Canby.

The board confirmed the hiring of Ryan Meehan as county parks director/heavy equipment operator. Meehan is originally from Blue Earth and previously worked seasonally for the state Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Division as a burn crew leader. Meehan is replacing Myron Hagelstrom who worked as a part-time summer employee of the county for 33 years before retiring last December.