RINGSTED - The Emmet County Board of Supervisors held its weekly meeting Tuesday at Madden Pioneer in Ringsted, which allowed the board to visit the former Ringsted School and discuss firsthand possible uses for the building.
Armstrong-Ringsted Consolidated School District closed the building June 30 to consolidate students into fewer buildings. Elementary students, who attended Ringsted School, now attend Sentral.
"We have had more interest than I ever thought we would have" in putting the school building to good use, said supervisor Alan Madden, noting that the Aquaponds company will be here Oct. 3-4 to present its business plan.
Among the obstacles, said Madden, were that the school is concerned about heating the building for another season. And while the school would like to get rid of the building, he said the city wouldn't want to take it over. Another issue is asbestos floor tile which would cost $45,000 to remove.
In another matter Tuesday, supervisor Jon Martyr reviewed Fall Youth Day Sunday, Sept. 23. He said there were 51 youth participating, the biggest turnout ever.
In other business, the board approved a contract with Spencer Hospital for mental-health services.
In the county road report, engineer Roger Patocka said crews were blading, edge rutting, cleaning ditches and building up driveways. The board approved a permit for Windstream Communication, Inc. to plow and bore a fiber optic cable in Sections 35 and 36 of Armstrong Grove Township and in Section 2 of Denmark Township.
Patocka brought up the subject of storage space for the secondary roads department, saying there were more vehicles than bays available. He said the new truck plow at the Armstrong shop will require a couple additional bays to the north at an estimated cost of $100,000.
He said the conservation board has been using the county quonset at Gruver, and Anderson said he's held off on repairs because he didn't know if the building was the conservation board's or not. And Patocka said that in the off-season, the fair board rents the old National Guard armory in Estherville out for storage, with the money going toward the fair.
The board also discussed the possibility of seeing if the county could use the Ringsted School bus barn for storage.
In other business, the board appointed auditor Mikki Erickson as Title VI coordinator.
The board also discussed dangerous rail crossings in the county. Patocka said he had heard of car shocks taken out and the front wheel of a motorcycle damaged.
The board also approved a proclamation honoring Business Appreciation Week Nov. 12.