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Carson Ouellette of U.S. Senator Al Franken’s Office in Ortonville

Carson Ouellette, Northwest Minnesota Regional Field Representative for  U.S. Senator Al Franken, was in Ortonville this morning talking concerns with local leaders.

Pictured (L to R):  Ortonville Mayor Steve Berkner, County Commissioner Brent Olson, Carson Ouellette of U.S. Senator Al Franken’s Office, Cindy Jorgenson of OAHS, Becky Parker President of the Ortonville EDA & President of the Big Stone Arts Council, and Kevin Benson of OAHS.

Great conversation!  Topics ranged from concerns by Ortonville/MRES on the Rail Bill Sen. Franken is currently working on, Federal regulations on coal fired power plants which increases the cost of electricity;  update on Sen Franken’s previous visit to Ortonville and the work that has subsequently been accomplished on the $5.5 Million Whetstone Project; Health Care concerns including reimbursement discussions; the needs for mental health care in Big Stone County; support for the Community Block Grant through HUD which is the source of the Small Cities Development Grants; workforce needs; and our request to relay a “thank you!” message to U.S. Senator Franken for his continued work on Broadband.

Below you see Commissioner Brent Olson discussing “Natural Swimming Pools – no chemicals”  Olson provided a map to show the connections –  the Bike Trail connecting to the Minnesota River Regional Park (formerly Lakeside Park) which connects to the Water Plant property (currently undergoing plans for a new Cultural Center by the Big Stone Arts Council) – – and at the end of all of this is the Pier (WPA project) where for years this area was maintained as Ortonville’s swimming beach… this is the location that Brent would like to see a natural swimming pool.  (How they work:  Natural swimming pools rely on a constructed wetland of plants and gravel to filter the water in an area call the regeneration zone.  This zone is like a water garden; a variety of plants selected by a natural pool specialist or a landscape architect create an ecosystem that cleans the pool water. info link)

Sen Franken Office Carson Visit-2

Brent Olson (BSC Commissioner) and Carson Ouellette of Sen Al Franken’s Office

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