The following content was contributed by Cook County News Herald

Adam Dorr finishes in top 5 at state in History Bee

Mon, 03/30/2015 - 11:16am

After scoring high enough in an online qualifying test, Cook County Middle School seventh-grader Adam Dorr headed to Nova Classical Academy in St. Paul on Wednesday, March 18 to compete in a live regional competition. Dorr finished in the top 10—in 5th place—and is eligible for the National History Bee competition in Louisville, Kentucky in May.

The Cook County News-Herald talked to Dorr this week, asking him first how difficult it was to qualify. Dorr said the on-line test was not too bad. And, it gave him practice in answering questions quickly. “You have 30 seconds per question,” he explained.

At the regional competition, the first three rounds were fairly easy for the history buff. “There weren’t that many people watching,” he said, grinning when asked if it included a buzzer like the challenging game show Jeopardy.

“It’s kind of like that,” he said, noting that as competition advanced, the crowd watching grew.

Asked if he remembered the toughest question, Dorr said he didn’t. “They are all pretty long questions. But the ones hardest for me were about kings and queens.

“I like U.S. history better,” he said.

Those were the questions that were “easy” for Dorr.

Asked what he would say to other students who might want to take part in the History Bee, Dorr said, “They should do it. There’s a lot of stuff to know, but it’s really fun.”


This local news is provided by Cook County News-Herald. Visit the community newspaper at

Birch Grove Community School and townships continue discussion on funding

Mon, 03/30/2015 - 11:13am

The Birch Grove Community School (BGCS) board of directors met on Tuesday, March 17, inviting Lutsen, Tofte and Schroeder officials to join them in discussion about the funding request made by the school at township annual meetings on March 10, 2015.

Schroeder Supervisor Tina McKeever and Tofte Supervisor Paul James were at the meeting to hear what the township had learned about payments and/or donations to townships.

BGCS Board Member Judy Motschenbacher distributed a letter sent to Senator Tom Bakk and Representative David Dill from Kent Sulem, general counsel and director of government relations for the Minnesota Association of Townships (MAT).

In his 3-page letter to legislators, Sulem said the appearance of “conflicting answers” from MAT reflected correct answers to slightly different scenarios.

The first question, said Sulem, is “Can a town make a general donation to a charter school?”

Sulem wrote that the answer is yes, provided the charter school is operating under Minnesota Statute Chapter 124D or receives direct state funding. If that is true, Sulem said Minnesota Statute 471.84 “allows a town to transfer, with or without compensation, personnel property to other public corporation, including school districts.

He wrote that cash is considered personal property…”

Motschenbacher said that BGCS does operate under the State Statute cited and does receive state funding.

Sulem’s letter said in that case, “…the town board could, under its own authority, make a cash donation of any size to the school as a school district. Approval is not required at the annual town meeting. In fact, any action at the annual meeting would be purely advisory under this provision of law.”

Tofte Supervisor James repeated what he said at the March 10 annual meeting, expressing concern about where the funds to be given to the school come from.

James said, “They don’t talk about setting up a levy. That is my question, whether the town can levy or not.”

James said he was comfortable moving ahead with contributing the money requested to the school, however, he said had questions. 

Schroeder Supervisor McKeever agreed. She said her board had questions about the levy as well. McKeever said she would like to see all three townships meet to discuss the issue.


This local news is provided by Cook County News-Herald. Visit the community newspaper at

County hires attorney to handle law enforcement grievance

Sun, 03/29/2015 - 11:09am

At County Attorney Molly Hicken’s request, the county board agreed on Tuesday, March 24 to hire Dyan Ebert to represent the county in the grievance filed by Law Enforcement Labor Services (LELS) for law enforcement personal who feel that two employees—Leif Lunde and Ben Hallberg—should not get  seniority credit for the time they served in administrative roles.

Newly-elected Sheriff Pat Eliasen first denied the union’s request, which then went to Hicken, who also denied it.  In Step 3, the grievance was brought before the county commissioners who also denied it because past practices have allowed a county employee to return to the labor pool from a management position without losing time.

Hicken said it has been 24 years since the county faced a grievance and she felt that Ebert, who has a lot of expertise in handling such cases, would be best able to handle the matter.


This local news is provided by Cook County News-Herald. Visit the community newspaper at

The following content was contributed by WTIP North Shore Community Radio

Child Protection in Cook County

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 1:17pm

Child protection is a community effort, and locally we have the support of Cook County Public Health and Human Services.  WTIP’s Veronica Weadock spoke with Social Services Supervisor Grace Bushard and Child Protection Social Worker Heidi Akins of PHHS.   Concerns about a child's safety or wellbeing can be reported at 387-3620.

Cook County Public Health & Human Services
411 W Second Street
Grand Marais, MN 55604
(218) 387-3602


North Shore Morning

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Predictions and precautions for 2015 fire season

Thu, 03/26/2015 - 12:50pm

There’s a prediction that the spring of 2015 may be an active fire season.  WTIP’s Ann Possis spoke with Nancy Larson and Patti Johnson of the USDA Forest Service on Daybreak.

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The Great Place Project wants to know about your special place

Wed, 03/25/2015 - 1:32pm

It’s the second year for the Great Place Project, offering mini-grants for places that reflect the unique character and identity of the community. WTIP host Mark Abrahamson spoke with Kris Garey and Maren Webb about the Great Place Project. 


Applications are available online or at the Sawtooth Mountain Clinic front desk and are due by March 31st.  More information from Maren at 387-2330 or online at


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