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Baraga County Accepts Grant for Sturgeon River Park

Baraga County’s new Sturgeon River recreation area in Covington Township is a step closer to reality.

Last evening, county commissioners accepted the $2.7 million purchase money grant from the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund. That will cover 80 percent of the cost. The remaining 20 percent is being covered by the sellers of the land, who are accepting the grant as full payment for the parcel, which is valued at $3.65 million. Because of that, the county will not need to provide any cash toward the purchase.

At last night’s meeting, the county’s first responders made a pitch for a share of the county’s American Rescue Plan Act money. Gary Wadaga of Bay Ambulance said the request came from his organization, and all of the county’s fire departments…

Baraga, L’Anse, Bay (ambulance), Aura, Arvon, Covington, Keweenaw Bay, Pelkie and Michigamme-Spurr.

They’re asking for $450,000, and have already agreed how it would be allocated. Commissioners said they’ll consider the request, but don’t yet know how much money they’ll have available. The first expense that will be addressed is a new roof for the county administration building. Bids on that are due by the end of the month.

Harry Miron from the Baraga County Trails Authority said plans for new ORV and snowmobile trails are advancing. The new trails will provide better access to L’Anse and Baraga, and to scenic areas of the county. The long-term goal is to have them included in the DNR system. Until that happens, the county will need to cover the cost of liability insurance.

Commissioner Gale Eilola reported that the Baraga County Fair Board was pleased with the turnout at the event last weekend…

We had pretty good attendance all three days, so we’re planning next year’s fair already, and got some new ideas.

Commissioners accepted a bid of $14,501 from Superior Truck and Tire for a Polaris side-by-side ORV being sold by the sheriff’s department.

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