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Forest aids distributed to help maintain county roads

The WisDOT has distributed $320,600 to 24 counties, to maintain and improve public roads in county forests. In 2020, funding from the state’s County Forest Road Aids program will help improve more than 900 miles of public roads within county forests.

Included in that, are 18.12 miles of road in Chippewa County, which receives $6,360.12 in aid toward maintanence.

These roads enable counties to manage their forest resources, and allow the public to explore the forests for wildlife viewing and many other sporting activities.

To qualify for the state funding, roads must meet minimum design standards of a 16-foot surface width and a 20-foot roadway width; be located within county forests; be open and used for travel; and cannot be town roads, county or state highways.

County Forest Road Aids are separate from the larger General Transportation Aids (GTA) program. GTA provides funding to local governments from state-collected transportation revenues (fuel taxes and vehicle registration fees), helping offset the cost of county and municipal road construction, maintenance, traffic and other transportation- related costs.


“We’re way ahead of a lot of districts, I think,” said Briggs.

Vice president Jamie Close asked for understanding, as some kids may be used to getting high grades, then have to retake tests and work on homework until late, and still score low.

“My personal opinion, I think Cornell is doing a great job,” said Close. “But I do feel…the teachers do need to reassure… some of these kids, that if they are giving an honest effort, that’s all they can ask for.”

“This is taxing on everybody,” said superintendent Paul Schley. “I feel our kids are still learning and not just maintaining.”

Braaten says if the district has to continue with online programming when a new school year rolls around, he thinks it will work out alright.

“I think we can do it in the fall, I really do,” said Braaten.

Elliott says he is so proud of Cornell’s teachers, board and administration, even when other districts may not have educated their students as well as they could during this time.

“That’s our job, is to get these kids to learn,” said Elliott. “It’s not easy, but they’re (teachers) busting their tail to do it.”

To help ease the burden of where meals are coming from in a time with businesses closed and kids at home, Schley says he has written a grant, funded by the USDA, which mails 10 days of breakfasts and lunches to families who qualify for free and reduced lunches. Schley is waiting to hear back if the district has received the grant.

“Hopefully, we can get that soon and send more free stuff home to people,” he said.

In the business portion of the meeting, members accepted the resignation of school psychologist Chloe Zeman and guidance counselor Jessica Harder.

Zeman has taken a job in a neighboring district to be closer to home.

Thank you for your support and the opportunities provided me over the last two years, wrote Zeman. I’ve truly enjoyed the relationships I was able to build. I will miss working with everyone.

As for Harder, her husband has been placed with medical school residency in Milwaukee.

I want to thank you for giving me this opportunity to grow, learn, build relationships, and collaborate with students and staff in the district, wrote Harder. I will take the valuable things I’ve leaned in Cornell, and use it moving forward in my counseling career.

On behalf of the board and myself,” said Briggs, “I’d like to thank them both for their time here and wish them good luck in the future.”

Members also approved the hire of Juliana Nichols as psychologist and of Katelyn Jensen as a kindergarten teacher.

Although it falls on the Memorial Day holiday, the next regular board meeting will be Monday, May 25, at 7 p.m. For now, the meeting is scheduled to be in-person, but that could change closer to the date.