July 20, 2007
Bradbury Township Meeting
Mille Lacs News staff writer
There was standing room
only at the Bradbury Township Hall last night as the OACRG (Onamia Area
Citizens for Responsible Growth) addressed the Township Board with concerns
about Nexus and the acquisition, annexation, and rezoning of the Grosslein/Bye
"Unlike the Onamia City
Council, the Bradbury Township Board listened to us," said one
"Our Township Board runs
like a well-oiled machine," said another, smiling. "They're good people we
can count on to do an honest job."
After listening to the
citizens' concerns, a sympathetic Bradbury Township Board indicated that
they were willing to help their neighbors and protect their township from
future Onamia mayhem.
July 1, 2007
Public Document Exposes City Council
The Mille Lacs News recently came into
possession of a public document which exposes Phil Gravel of directing the
city clerk to edit out and remove a portion of the Environmental Quality
Board guidelines to keep citizens from "getting any ideas" about petitioning
for an Environmental Assessment Worksheet.
Nexus CEO Skips School
It was surprising to see
how few people came to hear Nexus CEO Jim D'Angelo speak about the proposed
privatization of Mille Lacs Academy, considering the local current
controversy about the juvenile sex offender treatment center. But Tuesday's
Onamia school board meeting was a commitment Jim didn't honor. Apparently he
had more pressing concerns at the Gerard Academy in Austin, Minnesota. The
school board went on about their business without him.
Nexus CEO Threatens County Commissioner
In a letter to County Commissioner Frank
Courteau, Nexus CEO James D'Angelo stated unequivocally that Mille Lacs
Academy will leave Mille Lacs County should they be denied property tax
exemption. If the proposed $10 million dollar facility were to be built in
Onamia, estimated property taxes would run about $447,000 per year, with
over $120,000 going to the city itself, money that would be welcomed in the
community. But Nexus has indicated that property tax exemption is required
to keep them from leaving the community.
Ironically, 98% of Nexus' support comes from
tax payers. Each county pays for it's own sex offenders, (about $235 per day
per inmate). The 94 adolescents housed at the institution bring in roughly
$22,000 each and every day. With an annual budget of 38 million dollars per
year, Nexus still demands double-dipping privileges, expecting the tax
payers to also bear the property tax burden for them.
"It doesn't seem fair!" exclaimed one Onamia
businessman. "We pay our taxes, why shouldn't they?"
The Mille Lacs News repeatedly attempted to
contact James D'Angelo but he refused to answer emails or return calls.
Mille Lacs Academy Juvenile Escapes
"Don't try playing the safety-risk management card. It won't
work," said Jim D'Angelo, CEO of Nexus. In the midst of the controversy
about safety issues, where Nexus employees called MLA opponents' concerns
about safety unfounded and ridiculous, yet another juvenile escaped from the
Mille Lacs Academy on Sunday. A Mille Lacs County Sheriff's deputy
patrolling the neighborhood advised residents to be on the lookout for
a 15 year old runaway from the Mille Lacs Academy. The missing sex offender was later picked up at the
Gateway Cafe, south of Onamia.