Updated: 07/16/2014 6:13 PM
Created: 07/16/2014 4:46 PM WDIO.com
By: Briggs LeSavage
The Duluth City Council is scheduled to vote Monday night on whether or not to allow the sale of 26 tax-forfeited land parcels on Park Point.
This move is part of St. Louis County's plan to sell all its tax-forfeited land on Park Point, Keith Hamre, director of the City Department of Planning and Construction Services, said. Because the land plots are on Park Point, Hamre said the county has to get approval from both the City of Duluth and the City Council before they can go ahead with the sale.
Although St. Louis County controls the land, the county does lease portions to be used as gardens or docks. Now, Hamre said the city is looking to pass off their management to either private or commercial owners.
"(The plots are) adjacent to existing residential and could be developed into single family building lots or ... could be a townhouse development or duplex development," Hamre said.
He said many of the plots are better suited for private ownership. It will also help the tax base to continue collecting taxes on those properties, Hamre said.
Some of those 26 properties are underwater and Duluth City Councilor Sharla Gardner said she worked to changed legislation this spring to allow those residents who live directly in front of those underwater properties first dibs in a land auction. Past legislation read that any adjacent property owners would have an equal right to the land.
"I just felt, for the protection of the neighborhood and for the protection of the people who were using this, it is really important that they at least have the first right to bid on this," Gardner said.
Gardener said there were originally 33 parcels being considering for sale, but after more consideration, they discovered seven of those parcels didn't fit with the Park Point Small Area Plan.
Hamre said if the council approves this resolution at Monday night's meeting, the county will be given a final parcel list and then go ahead with authorizing the land auction for any interested bidders.
Licenses, Deer Population Down for Wisconsin Deer Opener
The Wisconsin firearm deer hunting tradition got off to a safe start as Department of Natural Resources officials said they had received no reports of accidental shootings or other injuries by mid-afternoon Sunday on the opener of the state's nine-day gun deer hunt....
MNsure Enrollments, Renewals Approach 8,000
Minnesota's health insurance exchange says it has enrolled nearly 8,000 Minnesotans in health plans in the first week of open enrollment this fall. The deadline for enrolling in coverage that takes effect Jan. 1 is Dec. 15.
Wisconsin Gun Deer Hunt Begins
The season opened as the sun rose Saturday and will run through Nov. 30. Forecasts for opening weekend called for freezing rain and fog with highs ranging from the upper 30s to the low 40s both days.
Superior Police: Officer's Use of Force Justified
The Superior Police Department says an internal investigation has found an officer's use of force was justified in an arrest seen on a controversial dashcam video. However, the officer was given a 10-hour unpaid suspension for "vulgar and unprofessional" communication during the arrest.
Johnston Investigation Concludes Five Allegations Substantiated
An investigation into allegations that a Duluth school board member threatened the district's superintendent and other board members concludes that five of six claims are warranted. A 67-page report details the allegations against school board member Art Johnston released to Eyewitness News on Friday.