Around Cook County

News and other information from Cook County

Energy Plan adopted for county

Tue, 08/21/2012 - 2:47pm

Last month, a comprehensive energy plan was approved by both the Grand Marais City Council and the Cook County Board of Commissioners.  According to George Wilkes of the Cook County Local Energy Project (C-CLEP), the energy plan “is a framework for collaborative work on energy issues.” 


Cook County and Grand Marais Energy Conservation and Renewable Energy Plan

Executive Summary

In the summer of 2010, the Cook County Board, the City of Grand Marais, and the CookCounty Local Energy Project (CCLEP) formed a partnership to develop a voluntary Energy Conservation and Renewable Energy Plan (Energy Plan) pertaining to both the City and the County. The purpose of this project is to better prepare our community for the challenges,and opportunities, of a rapidly changing energy environment. More specifically, implementation of this Energy Plan should benefit our community by:

• Retaining energy dollars in our local economy.

• Creating jobs.

• Improving quality of life for Cook County citizens through more comfortable, less costly,energy efficient housing.

• Buffering our community from the effects of unstable energy supply and pricing.

• Decreasing our community’s contribution to the harmful environmental and climatic effects of fossil fuel use.

Public invited to open house in Tofte tonight to learn more about senior housing plans

Tue, 08/21/2012 - 11:31am

An open house and public meeting is being held from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. tonight, Tuesday, August 21 at the Tofte Town Hall to give the community the opportunity to learn more about the architectural and engineering study recently completed for the proposed West End Senior Housing project.
There will be a presentation by DSGW Architects and the town board will review the purpose of the project, its design principals and goals and design options. There will then be a “Design Charrette,” a public input process.
If you would like more information, contact Barbara Gervais, Tofte Clerk at 218-370-0763.

Election lineup set for local races

Tue, 08/21/2012 - 11:29am

Tuesday, August 14 was Election Day and races for county commissioner, Supreme Court judges, and U.S. senators and representatives have been narrowed to two candidates for the November election.
County Commissioner District 4 was the only local race that had three candidates still in the running. The Gunflint and Maple Hill precincts cast their votes in this race with the best voter turnout in the county. Gunflint precinct saw 62% and Maple Hill 61% of its registered voters choosing a candidate.
Garnering the most votes was Heidi Doo-Kirk with 217. She was followed by Rick Austin with 160 votes. The third candidate, Gail Anderson, received 93 votes and will not appear on the November ballot.
County Commissioner District 2 had three candidates listed, however Kelly Swearingen had withdrawn from the race and asked constituents not to vote for her. Despite her request, she received 20 votes.
Incumbent Fritz Sobanja earned 99 votes and challenger Garry Gamble received 76 votes.

Grand Marais Playhouse issues parade challenge

Mon, 08/20/2012 - 10:20am

Following up on the recent celebratory summer parades, Sue 
Hennessy of the Grand Marais Playhouse made this announcement: The 
Grand Marais Playhouse does hereby challenge all Grand Marais Arts 
groups (and individual artists) to compete for the coveted "Best Artsy 
Group" trophy for the Fisherman's Picnic parade in 2013 and beyond.  
Hennessy added, “You have a year to plan for next Fisherman’s 
Hennessy also said: The Playhouse does also herby challenge all local 
non-profits to compete for the coveted “Best Patriotic” trophy for 
the Grand Marais July 4th Parade in 2013.
You have 10 months to plan!” said Hennessy.
Hennessy said judges for the awards will be determined later. 
“Trophies will be traveling so you will need to win each year to 
retain ownership—and bragging rights,” said Hennessy. “Good 

Wind turbine parts boost Twin Ports shipments

Mon, 08/20/2012 - 4:45am

     DULUTH, Minn. (AP) - The rush to finish wind farm projects
before a federal tax incentive expires has boosted shipments at the
Port of Duluth-Superior.
     Duluth Seaway Port Authority executive director Adolph Ojard
says they've handled nearly a dozen shipments of wind turbine
components, plus a number of shipments of U.S.-manufactured blades
being sent to Brazil.
     The federal credit expires at the end of the year. It provides
wind developers a tax break of 2.2 cents per kilowatt-hour for the
power they generate from utility-scale wind projects.
     The port is also handling a variety of other cargo, including
huge steam and gas turbines and generators, mining machinery, and
other heavy equipment for projects across the Midwest and Canada.

"The Kitchen Witches" wraps up Grand Marais Playhouse summer season with laughs

Sun, 08/19/2012 - 8:31pm

Grand Marais Playhouse wraps up the summer season with the hilarious
“The Kitchen Witches” by Caroline Smith at the Arrowhead Center for the Arts, August 23. The play 
is a delightfulcomedy that won the Samuel French Canadian Play contest 
in 2005.
Isobel Lomax (played by Grace Bushard) and Dolly Biddle (played by 
Marcia Hyatt) are two "mature" cable-access cooking show hostesses who 
have hated each other for 30 years, ever since Larry Biddle dated one 
and married the other.
When circumstances put them together on a TV show called “The Kitchen 
Witches,” the insults are flung harder than the food!
Dolly's long-suffering TV producer son Stephen (played by Kevin Kager) 
tries to keep them on track, but as long as Dolly's dressing room is 
one inch closer to the set than Isobel's, it's a losing battle, and 
the show becomes a rating smash as Dolly and Isobel top both Martha 
Stewart and Jerry Springer!
Michael Peterson also has a role in this production and he even has a 
line in this one!
Performance dates are August 23 - 26 and Aug. 30 – Sept. 3. Thursday 
– Saturdays 7 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Tickets are $17 adults and 
$7 Students (no additional fees). Friday, August 24 is Food Shelf 
First Friday. Bring five or more items or a $10 plus donation to the 
Cook County Food Shelf and receive a buy one-get one free offer for 
that evening’s performance. Sunday, Aug. 26 is donation at the door 
day. Pay any amount for your ticket to that performance.