Around Cook County

News and other information from Cook County

State declares health and human services worker day

Wed, 12/14/2016 - 10:07am

Cook County, along with communities across the State, will be recognizing County, Tribal, and State Health and Human Services Worker Day in Minnesota on Wednesday, December 14, following a proclamation by Gov. Mark Dayton.

Cook County employs 22 people in the Public Health & Human Services Department who deliver a number of critical services, including: social services, chemical dependency and treatment options, childcare, financial services, health care programs and disease control and prevention.

Approximately one in five citizens in Cook County benefit from the services of the Public Health and Human Services Department.

WTIP's Joe Friedrichs spoke with Cook County Public Health and Human Services Director Josh Beck. 


County board decreases proposed levy

Tue, 12/13/2016 - 11:59am

In a move County Administrator Jeff Cadwell said will make the budgeting process very challenging, the Cook County Board of Commissioners voted on Tuesday, Dec. 13 to lower its levy by 10 percentage points, which equates to approximately $700,000.

A preliminary figure of 19.9 percent had been on the table as the deadline of Dec. 28 to set the levy approaches. After hearing a number of statements during Tuesday’s public comment period from Cook County residents concerned with the increase on their property taxes, Commissioner Frank Moe made a motion to set the levy at maximum of 9.9 percent. His motion was seconded by Commissioner Garry Gamble and supported by Commissioner Ginny Storlie. Commissioners Heidi Doo-Kirk and Jan Sivertson voted against lowering the proposed levy. 

As for where the reductions will come from, Commissioner Moe suggested cuts to increases in requests from non-mandate funding sources, and perhaps from these requests in general, which would equate to a two-percent decrease in the levy. He also suggested delaying any expenditures for the local highway department, a move that could cut the levy by more than 3 percent. Other expenditures could come from all of the county’s department heads as the look for any means to reduce expenses. 

The next meeting of the Cook County Board of Commissioners is scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 20. 


MNSure deadline looming

Mon, 12/12/2016 - 3:25pm


Minnesotans who want private health coverage through the MNsure marketplace beginning January 1 have until midnight on Thursday, December 15, to complete enrollment.

“It’s important to complete your enrollment as soon as possible to have access to the widest range of plan options available,” advised MNsure CEO Allison O'Toole.

“Current customers can renew or change their private plan during the annual open enrollment period,” stated O'Toole. “If you are satisfied with your current plan and it is available next year, your coverage will automatically renew.”

MNsure reminds Minnesotans to use the comparison shopping tool. This tool allows you to evaluate plans to see what’s the right fit for you based on your personal health and your projected total cost of care in 2017. You can also see if you qualify for financial help.

Summer 2017 Artist-In Residence Program applications for Isle Royale sought

Mon, 12/12/2016 - 11:06am


Applications for Isle Royale National Park's 2017 Artist-in-Residence Program will be accepted between January 2 and February 16, 2017. This program provides artists the opportunity to become part of a long-established tradition of interpreting national parks through art.

The Artist-in-Residence Program is open to professional artists whose work can be inspired by the park's unique character. The program offers writers, composers, and all visual and performing artists the opportunity to capture the moods and magic of Isle Royale through their particular art form.

The selected artist will be given the use of a canoe and a rustic cabin while on the island. The program runs from July through early September. Complimentary transportation to and from the island is provided on the Ranger III, a 165-foot ship operating from Houghton, Michigan. Each residency is scheduled for two to three weeks. The Artist-in-Residence Program is co-sponsored by Isle Royale National Park, Isle Royale and Keweenaw Parks Association, and the Copper Country Community Arts Council. Artists will be enrolled in the National Park Service's Volunteer in the Parks Program. During the residency, the artists will be asked to share their experience with the public through a weekly presentation or demonstration. The artists are required to donate to the park an art piece that is representative of their Isle Royale residency.

Applications for the program must be postmarked by February 16, 2017. Entries postmarked after February 16 will not be considered. Notification will be made by May 1, 2017. Further information can be found on our website,, or please call (906) 482-0984 or email




Funeral services to be held for Alton Berglund

Mon, 12/12/2016 - 10:59am

Alton Berglund, 92, Grand Marais, died Friday December 9, 2016 at Essentia Health St. Mary’s Medical Center in Duluth.

How to recycle propane canisters from ice fishing heaters

Mon, 12/12/2016 - 9:46am

Many Northlanders have an abundance of those small green propane canisters used for heating ice shacks –WTIP’s Joe Friedrichs, like many of us, wondered what to do with the canisters once they are empty – he finds out in this interview.  


Cold weather looms in the forecast this week

Mon, 12/12/2016 - 9:46am

There is some cold weather in the forecast this week, and WTIP volunteer Mark Abrahamson spoke with the National Weather Service to find out more. 


Weekend News Roundup for December 10

Sat, 12/10/2016 - 11:10am

Each week the WTIP news staff compiles a review of news from the previous five days. Stewart Mills stops his recount bid. Lake Superior warming attributed to an algae. Environmental groups stop their MinnTac lawsuit…all this and more in the week’s news.


WTIP shares the latest law enforcement report

Fri, 12/09/2016 - 12:14am

Cook County Law Enforcement Report
The following reports are a record of calls made to the Cook County Law Enforcement Center in the last week. These are the initial calls made to law enforcement dispatchers. 




Winter weather on the way with single degrees to minus and wind chill

Thu, 12/08/2016 - 11:59am

There may be a little snow in the forecast, but colder weather is the big news. WTIP’s Jay Andersen spoke with National Weather Service Meteorologist Carol Christenson about snow and colder temperatures.


Sen. Franken reflects on a new game in Washington

Thu, 12/08/2016 - 11:59am

There may be a new administration in Washington, and there certainly will be some changes, but many things will remain the same. WTIP’s Jay Andersen spoke Minnesota’s U.S. Senator Al Franken about what’s new and what’s not in D.C.


Vikings basketball teams ready for home opener

Thu, 12/08/2016 - 9:04am

Both the Cook County Vikings girls and boys basketball teams have their season opener on Friday, Dec. 9 at home against Two Harbors. The girls start things out at 4:45 p.m. in the Cook County High School gym. And the boys are up after that, starting at 6:30.

In this interview, WTIP's Joe Friedrichs speaks with Vikings Coach Kelly Senty about the upcoming season. 


Winter withdraws, will return

Wed, 12/07/2016 - 12:19pm


Dick Nelson couldn't believe his water gauge. It contained seven inches of rainwater.

"Seven inches. Can you believe it?" Nelson asked on Tuesday, November 29.

Convert that rain to snow, said Nelson, and that would make "a good five feet. Maybe more," he exclaimed on the phone from his Lutsen residence.

While Nelson didn't want five feet of snow dumped on us in a small amount of time, Lutsen Mountains would at least like the temperatures to fall below freezing so they can once again start to make snow.  Enough snow was made to open a few runs in time for Thanksgiving, but much of that has been washed away. Still, skiers take heart, a few cold nights and some natural snowfall are all that is needed for runs to open again.

Nelson isn't the only one surprised by winter's brief retreat.

Winter came with a pounding fury and frightening flurry of snow less than two weeks ago. It took about 12 hours to blanket the Northland under a foot of snow in some places, but then it backed down, and a day later fall returned.

Instead of a white rabbit landscape, the ground is brown, wet and muddy, sloppy as a St. Bernard puppy’s kiss but not as cute.

 The Co-op parking lot in Grand Marais has been flooded for two days. Even in the summer, it doesn't stay under water that long.

Meanwhile, the rivers are once again high, and the water is moving fast. It feels like fishing for Rainbow can't be far behind.

As far as the 10-day weather forecast, snow is coming. As of November 30 temps are supposed to be in the 30s during the day but colder at night with a chance of snow. That's the way the forecast looks for the next 10 days: falling temps, lots of clouds, and some snow. Even a little snow will whiten the land and brighten moods as the gray of winter once again falls upon us.

Commissioners backtrack on decision to meet with adminstrator to solve board greviance

Wed, 12/07/2016 - 12:17pm

The Grand Marais Harbor isn’t full of tea bags yet, but it could be.

Commissioner Frank Moe called on citizens to take back their county.

Janicek reciveves EMDR training

Wed, 12/07/2016 - 12:11pm

November 27, 2016
7:28 a.m. Lutsen  Safe routes to school.
8:02 a.m. Sven And Ole’s Pizza, Security alarm. Hall to storage door.
8:08 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Would like deputy to call back. 
9:28 a.m. East Highway 61  Dead deer in west bound lane. 
9:55 a.m. Tire And Auto Lodge, Grand Marais Vehicle was being towed and came off the hooks. No injuries.
10:06 a.m. Bucks Hardware, Grand Marais Lost wallet, black fold in half. 
10:42 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Party will be bringing in 14 long guns for storage. 
11:09 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Party would like a call.
11:55 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Party would like a call.
1:22 p.m. West Highway 61 Traffic stop, warning given
1:25 p.m. Grand Portage  Young kids have taken things out of the garden and the gazebo.
4:08 p.m. Dockside Fish Market Party left a purse. Contains an Illinois driver’s license. They will keep the purse at their business. 
4:36 p.m. Grand Marais Caller reporting that their child got intoxicated at a party at this residence. Caller just wanted the host warned that they are aware of the parties and wants them stopped. 
4:46 p.m. County Road 7, Grand Marais Papers served.
5:09 p.m. Lutsen  Ladder in the roadway near here.
6:17 p.m. Grand Marais  Party is at this apartment yelling and kicking on the door. 
10:17 p.m. North Broadway, Grand Marais  Municipal parking lot and the road alongside the co-op are flooded over from the rain again.
November 28
2:18 a.m. Grand Portage  911 call with nobody on the line. 
7:52 a.m. Cook County High School  Safe routes to school. 
8:37 a.m. Cook County courthouse Zone 1 fire alarm. 
8:47 a.m. Cook County courthouse Reporting harassment.
9:21 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Bringing prisoner to court 
10:53 a.m. Arrowhead Trail, Hovland Culvert washing out 2 3/4 miles up the Arrowhead Trail. The road is falling in 
10:57 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Permit to carry application received. 
10:58 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Permit to carry application received. 
11:08 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Lost credit card holder with cards in it. 
11:12 a.m. County Road 1 Large tree over the road. About 12" diameter.
11:23 a.m. West Highway 61 Traffic stop, warning given.
12:18 p.m. Cutoff Rd, Grand Marais Residence check.
12:55 p.m. Great Expectations School D.A.R.E. class.
2:23 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  Compliance check.
3:12 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  Taking prisoner to Wright County jail for housing.
3:59 p.m. Grand Marais Caller states ex-girlfriend broke TV.
4:31 p.m. Tofte  Storage unit was broken into.
7:07 p.m. MN Power, Schroeder  Business check.
9:01 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  Person with Cook County warrant turning himself in.
November 29
1:37 a.m. Grand Marais  Giving someone a ride home.
4:12 a.m. Grand Portage  Party called from the casino and stated her boyfriend took off with her cell phone and wanted the Sheriff’s Office to get it back.
5:38 a.m. East Highway 61, Grand Portage Water in the creek at this address is backed up at the culvert, about to go over the road. It could wash out the highway.
6:06 a.m. Grand Portage  Male in late 30s having diabetic reactions.
7:46 a.m. Upper Rd, Grand Portage School patrol. 
9:03 a.m. Grand Portage Human Services Request deputy assistance at the office. 
11:00 a.m. Grand Marais  Party requests deputy presence. 
11:10 a.m. Mineral Center Rd, Grand Portage Reported about 6" of water over the road in this area. 
11:48 a.m. Mile Creek Road, Grand Portage  Traffic stop, citation issued.
12:32 p.m. Grand Portage  Traffic stop, citation issued.
1:07 p.m. Grand Marais  Can hear somone in the backround but not answering 
2:46 p.m. Gunflint Trail  Request a welfare check on party.
3:19 p.m. Grand Portage  Arrested two parties on St. Louis County warrants.
5:36 p.m. South Shore Drive, Grand Marais  Papers served.
5:53 p.m. Gunflint Trail  Hit moose. No vehicle damage and saw the moose running off.
6:41 p.m. Grand Marais  Public assist.
6:51 p.m. Grand Marais  Dog ran off. Black and white beagle mix. Orange collar and answers to Bo. Friendly. 
9:06 p.m. Grand Marais  Party purposely broke a bottle of liquor inside reporting party’s car.
11:28 p.m. Grand Marais  Residence check.
November 30
7:32 a.m. Grand Marais  Woman arrested for 5th degree assault.
7:45 a.m. Upper Rd, Grand Portage School patrol. 
8:11 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Transporting prisoner to doctor in Two Harbors. 
8:37 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Please call party back.
9:07 a.m. Hovland  Traffic stop, warning given.
9:45 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Party calling to report that he was in Cook County last week and did not notice that someone had hit the back of his vehicle. 
10:42 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Abandoned call and on callback no emergency call made.
10:55 a.m. 143 Gunflint Trail  Giving an update about female who is living out of her vehicle. 
11:47 a.m. County Rd 44/County Rd 7  Horse is loose approx. 1/4 west of this location. 
12:56 p.m. Grand Marais Post Office Female tripped on the sidewalk and hit her face. 
1:39 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  Taking inmate to court.
1:51 p.m. Grand Marais  Papers served.
2:15 p.m. Pike Lake Road, Grand Marais Papers served.
2:42 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  Would like to talk to a deputy about a camper.
2:55 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  General manager would like a callback from deputy. 
3:33 p.m. U.S. Customs, Grand Portage  Papers served.
4:02 p.m. Lutsen Rock in the westbound lane.
5:17 p.m. Grand Portage  Party was gone for a week and when they returned here someone has been in their home.
5:22 p.m. Grand Portage  Interviewing parties.
6:34 p.m. Tofte  Caller reporting a dead dog in the westbound lane 
6:40 p.m. Grand Portage Traffic stop, warning given.
6:53 p.m. Grand Marais  Traffic stop, citation issued.
7:37 p.m. West Highway 61, Tofte  Traffic stop, warning given.
7:41 p.m. East Highway 61 Black dog ran off. Small mixed breed wearing a collar with no tags. Friendly dog that answers to Chopper 
8:53 p.m. Grand Marais  Party out for a walk noticed a white Toyota Camry driving around the neighborhood. Looked out of place. 
December 1
2:48 a.m. Grand Portage  Party came to caller’s door and demanded money that was owed. Party states he called him by the wrong name and that he doesn't owe party anything.
6:33 a.m. West Highway 61, Lutsen  Traffic stop, warning given.
6:40 a.m. West Highway 61, Lutsen  Traffic stop, warning given.
7:28 a.m. Grand Portage  Party wants 2 individuals removed from this location.
7:49 a.m. Birchwood Apartments, Grand Marais Semi parked on upper side of road is causing a hazard as he is parked right by the driveway and this is where the school bus picks up the kids.
9:44 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Transporting party to courthouse for appearance.
10:09 a.m. Grand Portage  Property owner does not want parties there. Two parties arrested for burglary.
10:33 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Urine test for a female party 
11:12 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Female party here to take a urine test 
11:26 a.m. Grand Portage  Papers served.
11:51 a.m. East Highway 61/Whippoorwill Lane Requesting ambulance for female party.
11:54 a.m. Cook County Senior Center Homeless female came in for a cup of coffee and paid with a dollar bill that was marked up with ink.
12:38 p.m. Grand Marais  Party at location without permission to be there.
12:40 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  Taking male to hospital.
1:55 p.m. Grand Marais Transporting party home 
3:50 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  Received permit to purchase application. 
4:09 p.m. Gunflint Trail  Traffic stop, warning given.
4:56 p.m. Birchwood Apartments, Grand Marais  Would like to see a deputy.
5:33 p.m. County Rd 7/Fall River Road Horse and donkey are loose on road. 
5:53 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  Party needs a urine test.
7:01 p.m. East Highway 61 Traffic stop, warning given.
7:10 p.m. East Highway 61  Traffic stop, warning given
8:24 p.m. North Shore Health  7-year-old injured after hitting shotgun shell. 
9:09 p.m. West Highway 61, Tofte  Traffic stop, warning given
9:26 p.m. Tofte General Store & Bottle Shop Reckless driving traffic complaint. 
9:29 p.m. Hovland  Traffic stop, clear.
10:19 p.m. Grand Marais  Party left a pit bull dog in the business entry way.
December 2
12:44 p.m. West Highway 61 Traffic stop, warning given
1:10 p.m. East Highway 61  State employee arrived and there is damage to the front door.
1:47 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  Would like a callback from deputy.
2:24 p.m. East Highway 61, Kimball Creek Motorist assist, west bound on shoulder at this location.
3:09 p.m. MnDOT garage, Grand Marais  1999 GMC Jimmy broke down on the west bound shoulder, will have it towed on Monday 
5:31 p.m. East Highway 61 Traffic stop, citation issued.
6:01 p.m. East Highway 61 Traffic stop, warning given.
6:10 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  Caller picked up stray dog that was in traffic near mile marker 69, not sure where to take it.
6:26 p.m. Chicago Bay Marketplace, Hovland Traffic stop, citation issued.
9:53 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  Party needs to speak with a deputy about a child custody. 
11:57 p.m. Caribou Trail, Lutsen Just had a vehicle go in the ditch, appears everyone is ok.
December 3
2:35 a.m. Bluefin Bay, Tofte Ambulance needed for 48-year-old male.
4:06 a.m. Gunflint Trail/Devil Track Road Road is slippery. Intersection is like a sheet of ice. 
5:57 a.m. Grand Portage  Highway 61 is slippery from Grand Marais all the way up to Grand Portage. 
7:43 a.m. Cook County courthouse  Child protective services protocol.
8:25 a.m. Tofte Holiday  Assist State Patrol.
10:39 a.m. Law Enforcement Center  Asking if deputy will please call him back.
10:58 a.m. School House Rd/Gunflint Trl, 2uno  Vehicle in the ditch, no injuries and tow is on the way. Requesting squad for lights.
12:09 p.m. Co Rd 60, Grand Marais Public assist.
1:01 p.m. East Highway 61 Traffic stop, warning given.
1:23 p.m. Law Enforcement Center  Asking if deputy can call back.
2:57 p.m. Romans Road, Lutsen Ambulance needed for 80-year-old. 
4:22 p.m. Caribou Highlands Lodge, Lutsen  Driver’s side back door damage, reported for insurance purpose. 
7:29 p.m. Pike Lake Rd, Grand Marais Papers served.
7:30 p.m. Grand Marais  Papers served.
7:40 p.m. West Highway 61 Traffic stop, warning given.
11:51 p.m. West Highway 61 Traffic stop, citation issued.