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The night of Tuesday, Jan. 8, the City Council approved the rate of $1,500 for ambulance patients who need the new level of critical care the River Falls Ambulance Service began offering Jan.1. Council Member Randy Kusilek, who'd attended the commission meeting about the new service and rates, suggested River Falls set the bar higher than the proposed $1,300 per run. Kusilek pointed out later that the new rate beats a $10,000 helicopter ride. RFAS Director Jeff Rixmann explained how 12 of the service's 18 paramedics completed the highest level of training possible last year.
ELLSWORTH -- John Worsing, who was formally appointed by the Board of Supervisors Dec. 26, will succeed Sue Dzubay as Pierce County's medical examiner. He served two years as deputy medical examiner and then the past two years as chief deputy medical examiner. Worsing said the Pierce County supervisors asked him what two qualities he thinks are important for a medical examiner to have. He smiled at the thought of having to pick just two. "Compassion is key to the job," he said.
Since the Journal's report in early October on the completion of the multi-million dollar Cascade Avenue reconstruction project, the case of the faulty-finish poles has ended well -- with a $100,000 credit to the city. Toward the end of the project, the manufacturer Holophane delivered 33 streetlight poles that were supposed to have a smooth-black, anodized, powder-coated finish. Instead, the aluminum poles bore a cracked, peeling and discolored surface. The city refused the "product" and began negotiating with the vendor.
Six-year-old Franki Larson got the age-old question posed to most children during December: "What do you want for Christmas?" The big-eyed little girl, daughter of Nichole and Charles Larson of River Falls, answered more than once: "I've got lots of toys and don't really need anything, but maybe Santa could bring me food for the food shelf." Nichole said her daughter did name three or four things 'typical' for a six-year-old's wish list but relayed her food-shelf request to several relatives.
Documents coming recently to the City Council reveal that River Falls plans to redo the concrete road surface of South Main Street from Locust Street to Cemetery Road during the time between Memorial Day and Labor Day. The city will hold an informational public meeting about the concrete-pavement maintenance project 5-7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 29, at City Hall, 222 Lewis St. for people to learn more about the plans. City Engineer Reid Wronski said the meeting is the time to discuss the project and ask any questions or raise any concerns.
The annual breakfast commemorating the life, works and philosophy of Martin Luther King, Jr., delivers a package deal to attendees of all ages. The event honors a great man, caters to physical and spiritual hunger, benefits local food programs, encourages young poets, recognizes individuals of strong character, and brings together a group of harmonious singers to celebrate the day with songs. At an event price of $5 per ticket, many would call that a pretty good deal. Breakfast basics The breakfast happens 7-9 a.m. Monday, Jan. 21, St.
Pierce County Medical Examiner Sue Dzubay shared insights about her work as she prepares to resign from the job she's held for 16 years and shift into being a deputy medical examiner under her successor, John Worsing. "From the moment I introduce myself," she said about doing death notifications, "everything changes for that person." The Ellsworth native works as a nursing supervisor and emergency-management coordinator at River Falls Area Hospital. She was finding it increasingly difficult to juggle those responsibilities, along with medical examiner, home and family.
Natalie Kusilek, 76, of River Falls, never dreamed that a one-paragraph letter written to her seven children would lead not only to a large donation to the International Essential Tremor Foundation, but also to her speaking about the condition and the foundation to a national magazine and her local paper.
The subject of rental property in River Falls usually prompts interesting discussion. The topic surfaced in 2011 after citizens and a council member expressed concerns about how rental properties affect the value of surrounding property and neighborhoods. The city completed an extensive study late this year and is due to release a technical document that summarizes that study. The efforts basically resulted in the decision to take no action at this time.
Gingerbread bakers entered a total of 24 creations into the annual Gingerbread Contest, for which winners were announced Dec. 13. The contest puts contestants into one of three groups - adults, youth and graham crackers - and into one of four categories: Architectural, whimsical, graham cracker and people's choice. First place in each group earns $50, while second place earns $25. Young contestants in the graham-cracker category earned $10 or $5 for first or second place. The River Falls State Bank sponsors the contest and provides prize money.