Commissioners support Rail Authority Coalition


Sibley County Commissioners gave their financial support last week to the Minnesota Valley Regional Rail Coalition.

Commissioners approved providing funding of $1/capita payable in 2008, that will be toward 2009 expenses.

The newly formed coalition requested the funding to help with costs associated with any official meetings, mailers, advertising, and lobbying efforts. It is the coalition’s goal to receive state and federal funds to upgrade the 94-mile Minnesota Prairie Line to 25 mph travel. The line runs from Norwood to Hanley Falls, through Sibley County.

Sibley County Commissioner Charlie Woehler, who serves on the Regional Rail Authority, asked for the financial support. Sibley County has the most miles of the track, and Sibley County businesses – especially Heartland Corn Products – makes most use of the rail line.

“Sibley County must set the example,” agreed Sibley County Commissioner Bill Pinske.

The Regional Rail Coalition will hold an organizational meeting Wednesday, Sept. 17 at 1 p.m. at the Winthrop Vets Club.