Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.
- Member for
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Alexandria's tax levy will bump up 3.91 percent next year. The $6.99 million levy, approved at Monday's Alexandria City Council meeting, is $14,000 less that the preliminary levy increase of 4.12 percent approved in September. Although the overall levy is increasing slightly, the city's portion of property taxes are expected to dip a bit for many homeowners — if the value of their property stays the same. Taxes on a $150,000 home, for example, are expected to decrease from $611 to $607.
At its Monday meeting, the Alexandria City Council gave final approval to an ordinance that regulates short-term private vacation home rentals, often referred to as Vacation Rental By Owner, or VRBOs. Douglas County approved a VRBO ordinance in March. The goal of the city's ordinance will be to provide a consistent licensing process for VRBOs across the county, according to City Planner Mike Weber. The city's proposed regulations follow the same process for licensing as the county and is set to take effect on the same date as the county's — Jan. 1, 2019.
The Alexandria City Council approved several permits and licenses at its Monday meeting. Charitable gambling permits were issued to: Douglas County Pheasants Forever to sell raffles for a Feb. 23 event at Broadway Ballroom; Outreach Food Shelf to conduct bingo at the VFW on Feb. 12; and Alexandria Area Hockey Association for a gambling premise permit that will allow pull tabs, tip boards and a paddlewheel to be operated at DJ's Tap House.
An outdated phone number was listed in the story about the Jingle Bells Telethon. The correct number to call during the telethon is 320-762-0505. The correct number is now listed in the story.
'Twas two days before Jingle Bells, when all through the night, volunteers were shopping to buy gifts that were just right... That's just one item volunteers for the Alexandria Jaycees' Jingle Bells Telethon will cross off their to-do list before the program airs live this Saturday, Dec. 8, from the Lake Geneva Christian Center. "This is a very, very busy week for the volunteers to get everything ready," said Jaycees member Mike Schreiner, who handles public relations for Jingle Bells.
Something suspicious is popping up in lawns around Osakis — plastic pink flamingos. But don't let it ruffle your feathers. There's a way to stop them from roosting in your yard: Buy "Anti-Flocking Insurance" for $20. And you can, for a price, arrange for the flamingos to show up on a friend's property. This kind of shenanigans may sound like it's for the birds but it all goes toward a good cause — a fundraiser to help 10 Osakis students fly to Washington, D.C. in the spring. Osakis Close Up students are the ones spreading the flamingo cheer.
State Sen. Bill Ingebrigtsen, R-Alexandria, will chair the Environment and Natural Resources Finance Committee again in 2019 and 2020. Minnesota Senate Republicans announced the selection Wednesday. Ingebrigtsen served as chairman of the committee during the 2017-2018 session. He changed language in Minnesota's buffer law, helped reform the state's regulatory process and supported environmental protections.
Sleigh bells were jingling, wish lists were given to Santa and stockings were decorated in Osakis Saturday, Dec. 1. Santa Day attracted a big crowd of children, their parents and even a few girls basketball players from out of town who were competing in a tournament. Santa gave out treat bags, talked to children and posed for photos. Kids also had fun decorating cookies, making reindeer food and Christmas cards, and putting stickers on Christmas stockings. Donations to the Osakis Mitten Tree effort were also accepted.
This "It's Your Turn" includes comments posted on the Echo Press Facebook page in response to a proposed $14 million development at the corner of Broadway and Third Avenue. At its Nov. 26 meeting, the Alexandria City Council scheduled a public hearing for Feb. 25 to talk about the developer's application for tax increment financing.
State Rep. Mary Franson, R-Alexandria, will host a clothing and food drive on Saturday, Dec. 8, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Elden's Fresh Foods parking lot, 707 3rd Ave. E, Alexandria. The day-long drive seeks to collect warm clothing, blankets, and food items to share with people in need in the community and Alexandria area. Proceeds and items collected will be donated to the United Way of Douglas and Pope Counties and the Outreach Food Shelf. Franson hosted a clothing and food drive last December, and said its success motivated her to put on the event again this year.