Board doesn’t defy governor afterall

Local News

Oops! Oops!

Faribault County commissioners have fallen victim to the adage —- garbage in, garbage out.

On Jan. 19, the County Board on a 3-2 vote approved the “Citizens Rights” resolution. However, it wasn’t the one County Attorney Kathryn Karjala emailed for a story.

“It does appear that I attached Mr. Carlson’s resolution twice instead of the resolution as passed,” Karjala says. “The county probably will not face litigation.”

The county attorney is referring to a resolution Commissioner Tom Loveall introduced on behalf of Garth Carlson, the owner of Carlson Events Center located in the old Winnebago school building.

Loveall and fellow Commissioner Greg Young voted in favor of the Carlson resolution, although Karjala called it “unconstitutional,” could result in lawsuits against the county and loss of potential coronavirus relief aid. Commissioners John Roper, Bill Groskreutz and Bruce Anderson voted against it.

The resolution that was ultimately approved, following some changes made by Loveall, still supports the rights and liberties of citizens set forth in the Fourteenth Amendment.

“The Faribault County Board of Commissioners acknowledges the ability of the individuals and businesses of Faribault County to determine their best course of action to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic,” the resolution says.

Loveall, Young and Anderson supported the revised version, while Roper and Groskreutz did not.

“I think it was unnecessary to vote for something that we already do as a commissioner when we took our oath of office,” Roper says.

Groskreutz says he wanted to wait and have the county attorney determine whether the resolution is constitutional.

“We’re not going to tell a business that they can or not be open or anyone that they can defy the governor’s executive orders,” says Groskreutz. “If they do, we won’t be there to bail them out. They’ll have to face the consequences.”

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