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home : government : government June 24, 2016

4/10/2014 9:24:00 AM
Robinson appointment reviewed by councy

by Paul Martin

Goodhue County Staff were unaware that Lyman "Robby" Robinson, Jr., was reprimanded for sexual harassment in 2010 while working in Washington County, a report in the Red Wing Republican-Eagle by reporter Michael Brun reported on March 30.

Robinson started work as Veterans Service Officer for Goodhue County on March 21 after fulfilling the same role in Washington County since early 2010. He also serves as Mayor of Cannon Falls. Robinson "exhibited a pattern of inappropriate eye contact" with multiple female staff members, an investigation found. He was ordered to attend a respectful workplace training session at that time. No further complaints were recorded against him in his time with Washington County.

Goodhue County routinely conducts background checks on all new County employees during the hiring process. Robinson did not reveal the reprimand as an applicant, but it was discovered by a public data request made by the Republican-Eagle. Board Chair Ron Allen expressed frustration that the County's investigation had failed to uncover the record. County Attorney Steve Betcher told this reporter on April 1 that County staff are actively considering what action to take, if any.

Lorentz Wins

Ordinance Change

At its April 1 meeting, the Board approved David Lorentz' request for a change in the wording of the County's zoning Ordinance for the A-2 (mixed agricultural use) zone. The definition of allowed "Commercial recreation facilities" now includes "health facilities." Lorentz plans to develop a community-based fitness and wellness center on his property on Hwy. 19 west of Cannon Falls, the former site of Spring Garden Nursery. Commissioner Jim Bryant asked, "What is the definition of a health facility?" Board and staff are content to leave that undefined, since any application will still have to pass the planning process.

Paul Strand and Jennie-O Turkey Store, Inc., were given approval for a new turkey feedlot on Hwy 23 in the west side of Cherry Grove Township. The township had approved the new feedlot.

Septic Ordinance Change will Impact Property Sales

The Board approved changes to the County Ordinance concerning Septic systems. The changes are needed to bring Goodhue County into line with new state regulations. Under the new rules, systems will need to be inspected and relicensed when the property is sold or transferred. Sellers may need to place money in escrow if the system needs repair or replacement.

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