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In Minnesota, property taxes provide most of the funding for local government services. Each share of the property tax burden is determined according to its value and use. The Assessor's Office collects, tabulates, and updates property data annually to be used in further county calculations. The dollar amount required to cover operating expenses of local governments is levied by each township, city, school district, and county to pay for services required by local citizens. This translates into an annual property tax bill due and payable for each individual property.
There are three entities that have a role in determining your property tax:
There are a number of items that affect your property taxes. The following are those that traditionally have had the largest impacts:
Values are set by transactions in the market place. Property values are based on market values which fluctuate with general economic conditions such as:
By Minnesota state law, as property values change in the marketplace, those changes must be reflected in the Assessor's estimated market value.
If all property sees a similar change in value, your property class hasn't changed, the local government agencies don't have to increase their budgets, and there is no change in classification rates by the state legislature, there will be no change in your tax bill. Taxing authorities actually determine how much money the property tax has to generate to provide services to the taxpayer.
Minnesota has what is known as an ad valorem property tax system. This means property tax is divided among taxable properties according to their value. A mass appraisal process is used for estimating this value. Information from all sales that occur within the county is collected and closely analyzed by the Assessor's Office.
The Assessor's Office then adjusts market values by comparing properties that sold within a given area with properties that have not sold. This sales comparison by means of substitution provides the basis for the estimated market value of taxable property.
The final amount of property tax the owner pays in any given year is the end result of a process that begins over two years before property tax statements are actually mailed to property owners.
No, there is no limit on how much an estimated market value can increase or decrease.
No, it does not. There are differences between individual properties and between cities or townships. In one area the sales may indicate a large increase/decrease in value, and in another area there may be very little or no change in value. Also, different types of property within the same area may show different value changes.
There are numerous factors to be considered in each property which will cause value changes to differ. Some of the many factors that can affect value of a property include:
Yes. The Assessor keeps records on the physical characteristics of each property in the county. Even though the Assessor may have been unable to go through your property, the estimated market value will be reviewed based on existing records and sales of similar property. The Assessor’s Office is required by law to look at all sales in all areas in the county each year and adjust values based on the current selling prices of property, regardless of whether or not it has been a scheduled reassessment year for the property.
Generally speaking, improvements that increase the market value or selling price of a property will increase the Assessor's estimated market value. The following are typical improvements that will increase the market value of your property:
Good maintenance will help retain the market value of your property. Generally, your market value will not be increased for individual minor repairs such as those that follow. However, a combination of several of these items could result in an increase in your value.
Minnesota Statute 273.08 requires that all appraisers physically review each property at least once every five years. The appraisal interval may be shorter due to review appraisals requested by the owner, ongoing new construction, or if the appraiser feels there may be an error in the property information for a particular property.
Each property has unique characteristics that affect it's market value. Appraisers need to gather as much information as possible in order to arrive at a fair and equitable value. Typically, more variations in characteristics exist for older structures that affect market value of the property.
By denying an inspection the appraiser will be forced to make an arbitrary appraisal of the property which could be in error due to incomplete or improper information associated with the field record, possibly resulting in a higher valuation or wrong property classification. Appraisers want to view as many properties as possible in order to have the best possible information on all property, since the quality of the assessment is a measure of the quality of their work.
Not allowing an interior inspection will result in the loss of the right to appeal your market value at the Board of Review (Minnesota Statute 273.20 and 274.01. sub. 1).
If an owner or representative is not present an exterior review of the property will be performed. The appraiser will leave a door tag or business card asking that you call for an appointment for an interior inspection.
If there is no response, an arbitrary appraisal will be made; in effect, an educated guess as to the interior features and condition of the property.
Appraisers for Mille Lacs County will be driving a Mille Lacs County car and carrying a photo identification and/or business card. Information can be verified by calling the County Assessor's Office at 320-983-8311 or 888-280-8311.
In some cases, postcards are sent to property owners a few days before an appraiser begins work within an area, asking that the owner call for an appointment for an interior inspection of the property. If no appointment has been arranged, the appraiser will stop at the property when he/she is in the area.
The appraisal normally takes 10 to 20 minutes, depending on the number of buildings and complexity of the property. Appointments are scheduled far enough apart to allow time for property owners to ask any questions that they may have.
You will receive a valuation notice some time in March informing you of your value and classification for that assessment year, for taxes payable the following year. Even though an appraiser may have visited your property the previous summer, valuations require accumulation of sales data through the end of the year, as well as time during the winter to view new construction, analyze the market, and perform model calculations.
If there is a question in the property owner's mind as to the accurateness of the value, the owner should first make an attempt to find out what the property is worth by researching the current market trends. This can be done by checking sales of property in the area, checking values of similar properties, and talking to realtors and real estate appraisers. Sales information is available in the Assessor's Office for public viewing, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
An accurate assessment is achieved when all property is assessed at a mandated and uniform percentage of market value. Assessors annually measure and monitor the quality of their appraisal work in regard to two factors: an assessment level (the overall ratio of assessments to market value) and a range of assessment uniformity (the degree to which different properties are assessed at equal percentages of market value).
The legal assessment level in Minnesota is considered to be 100% of market value, but the acceptable level established by the Department of Revenue is when the overall ratio falls between 90% and 105% of market value. The standards of uniformity applied to assessments vary among the various property types because of lack of homogeneity found in properties. However, it is suggested in the guidelines published by the International Association of Assessing Officers that all categories of property should be within a 10% to 20% band of the assessment level.
The chief tool used too evaluate the assessment properties is the sales ratio study. It is a statistical analysis that compares the assessor’s estimated market values with actual sales prices for a 12-month study period that extends from October 1 through September 30 of the following year. This study identifies what is being done right, what is being done wrong and what appraisal activity is necessary for the next assessment year.
A sales ratio is the result of dividing the assessor’s market value of a property by the cash equivalent sales price of that property.
For example, if a property sold for $100,000 cash and it is assessed at $97,000, the ratio of assessment to selling price is 0.970 or 97.0%.
One sale says little about the overall assessment. Conversely, when many sales of the same property type are reviewed in unison, it does establish certain trends and patterns that become meaningful. One such measure is the assessment level that is indicated by computing the central tendency of all sales ratios that comprise the study sample. This central point in the study is the middle ratio when all the ratios are arrayed.
For example, if a study sample has the following ratios: 86%, 90%, 92%, 95%, 97%, 98% and 99%, the assessment level is the median ratio of 95%
Yes, assessment uniformity among and between classes of property is determined by comparing the measures of central tendency that were derived from the individual sales ratios.
Several systematic techniques can be applied as needed to discern any biases that are revealed to the value of properties. Some applications measure the average percentage deviation of each sales ratio with reference to the assessment level, while others measure variability, regressivity and progressivity.
Minnesota law requires assessors to value property at its estimated market value. Estimated market value must reflect the use of the property that will bring the greatest economic return to the land (its highest and best use). For many farm properties, the highest and best use may be to develop the land for a residential or commercial use. The residential or commercial value of a property has typically been significantly higher than that of farmland although the last few years the market has seen a greater increase in farmland values.
highest and best use
In the 1960s, the Legislature recognized that urban sprawl was causing valuation and tax increases that had the potential of forcing farmers off their land in certain situations. The Legislature developed a mechanism that allowed qualifying farmers to pay real estate taxes based upon the agricultural value of their land, while deferring the higher property taxes attributed to the land’s value as residential or commercial property. This law, officially known as the Agricultural Property Tax law, is commonly referred to as Green Acres and is codified in Minnesota Statute section 273.111.
In 2008, the Legislature amended the law to clarify that, going forward, only class 2a productive agricultural land can qualify for Green Acres. Class 2b rural vacant land that is currently enrolled in Green Acres may be grandfathered into the program until the 2013 assessment. Beginning with the 2013 assessment, any class 2b rural vacant land that has been grandfathered into Green Acres will be removed from the program and deferred taxes may be collected.
The implementation of a Green Acres program and its use are based upon the discretion of each county according to its location, land characteristics, and prevailing market conditions. It is administered for many reasons, one of which is to help curtail the loss of farmland due to urban growth.
Owners who possess agricultural property that is devoted to the production for sale of agricultural products may qualify. The property must:
production for sale of agricultural products
In addition to the preceding qualifications of size and classification, the property must also meet one of the following characteristics:
All parcels being enrolled for the deferred tax must be under the same ownership.
It may or may not. It depends on the property owner's plans. If the property owner plans to farm the property for an extended period of time, it may be advantageous to enroll in this tax deferment program. If he/she has plans to sell, develop, or put part or all of the property into a non-agricultural use within a reasonably short period of time, it may not be practical to enroll in the program. The option to sign up for the program should be carefully reviewed by the property owner.
The financial incentive, if any, to enroll in Green Acres will presumably be higher for those properties that are in the path of development. As the demand for these properties increased, the prices paid, and the market values reported, also rose at a faster rate than the general market increases evident in the agricultural market place. That trend has changed over the past few years, resulting in less benefit to having the farmland enrolled in the Green Acres program.
The greater the difference between a qualifying property's market value and agricultural value, the higher the associated property tax benefit.
For properties enrolled in Green Acres, taxes are calculated on both the estimated market value (higher value based on highest and best use) and the agricultural value (lower value).
The difference between the tax calculated on the agricultural market value and the estimated market value is deferred until the property is sold or no longer qualifies for the Green Acres program.
When property is sold, transferred, or no longer qualifies, the deferred tax (the difference between the agricultural tax and the tax based on the highest and best use) for the current tax payable year and the two prior years must be paid to the county.
Simply stated, the agricultural value of a property is its value when used for agricultural purposes. Unfortunately, it has been nearly impossible to find sales of agricultural property that are not affected by non-agricultural factors such as development pressure or sales of recreational land. In an effort to develop statewide uniformity, the Legislature directed the Commissioner of Revenue to develop a fair and equitable method for determining the agricultural values of each county.
The Department of Revenue studied statewide sales of largely tillable agricultural property across the state from 1990 to 1996. The department found that sales in several southwestern Minnesota counties were affected the least by non-agricultural factors, and thus were as close as possible to true agricultural sales. They are known as the base counties. Sales in the other 82 Minnesota counties during the same period were then compared to those in the base counties. This comparison yielded a set of individual county factors that measure the percentage relationship between each county and the base counties.
Each year, the Department of Revenue reviews current sales and calculates a base value that is used to determine agricultural values for all properties enrolled in the Green Acres program. The base value is adjusted for each county to determine the average tillable value per acre for that county. The County Assessor then applies this average value to individual properties. The value may differ on each individual parcel due to quality of land, location, or other factors.
Yes, the payment of special local assessments for improvements made to property qualifying for the Green Acres Program can also be deferred. However, when the property sells, all deferred special assessments become due.
The maximum number of years that the County Auditor-Treasurer can impose additional taxes on a property that had qualified for a tax deferment is three years. No payment is required for previously deferred taxes that extend beyond the most recent three-year period.
Land that no longer qualifies for a tax deferment prior to the expiration of the three-year period is subject to additional taxes only in the amount equal to the taxes that were deferred.
When the property no longer qualifies for the Green Acres Program, all deferred special local assessments, plus interest, become payable in equal installments spread over the time remaining until the last maturity date of the bonds issued to finance the improvements for which the assessments are levied.
If the bonds have matured, the deferred special local assessments, plus interest, are payable within 90 days.
Yes, the additional taxes imposed and the deferred special local assessments are a lien upon the property assessed. It is a tax lien to the same extent and duration as the regular payable real estate taxes levied against the property.
Only that part of the property that has been sold for a use other than farming, or has been put to a non-agricultural use, shall be subject to additional taxes.
When property qualifying for the Green Acres Program is sold, no additional taxes will be extended against it provided the property continues to be classified by the Assessor as agricultural for property tax purposes and meets the requirements for the tax deferral.
However, the new owner must file an application for the continued deferment within 30 days after the sale. The purchaser then assumes any deferred tax that goes with the property
If the property is not sold within three years of losing the agricultural classification for property tax purposes, no deferred taxes will be due on the property.
Beginning with the 2009 assessment for taxes payable in 2010, only property that is classified by the assessor as 2a productive agricultural land is eligible for enrollment in the Green Acres Program. The property must:
Read more information about qualifying for the Green Acres Program.
If you have class 2b rural vacant land as a part of your farm homestead, it will not qualify for Green Acres tax deferral. However, it may be eligible to receive other benefits under the Rural Preserve property tax program. Only lands engaged in the production of an agricultural product for sale will qualify for Green Acres.
A description of agricultural production can be found in Minnesota Statue, section 27313, subdivision 23. The County Assessor will be able to assist you in determining which portions of your farm are considered agriculturally productive and which are considered rural vacant land. Enrollment in the Green Acres program is limited to properties owned by individuals and certain farm family entities.
rural vacant land.
Green Acres applications must be filed with, and approved by, the County Assessor. Proper documentation to verify agricultural use must be submitted with the application. Download an application (PDF) and addendum form (PDF) or pick-up copies at the County Assessor’s Office The application must be filed by May 1 in order to receive consideration for the next year's payable tax.
The Assessor may also require:
If you have any questions about the program, please contact the County Assessor's Office at 320-983-8311 or 888-280-8311.
The regular refund is for people who have owned and lived in their home on January 2, 2015. The home must be classified as your homestead. For mid-year move-ins, you must occupy the home by December 1, and apply for homestead by December 15.
To qualify for the special refund, the following must be true:
There is no limit on household income for the special refund. You may qualify even if you don’t qualify for the regular refund. The maximum special refund is $1,000. Note: If you use part of your home for a business, make sure you read Special Situations on page 10 of the Minnesota Homestead Credit Refund (for Homeowners) and Renter’s Property Tax Refund Instructions (PDF).
Electronically: You can file your Homestead Credit Refund online for free with the Minnesota Revenue’s Online Filing System!
You may download and complete the Minnesota Revenue’s M1PR Homestead Credit Refund (for Homeowners) and Renter’s Property Tax Refund (PDF). If needed, you can find the forms at many libraries after January 1, or ask the Minnesota Revenue to mail you the forms by calling 651-296-4444 or 800-657-3676.
Note: You are no longer required to include your property tax statement when mailing a paper return. Mille Lacs County will provide this information if you are a Mille Lacs County resident.
Your property tax statement will note if your property is classified as a homestead. You may view the property tax statement sent to you from Mille Lacs County (usually sent out in March or April. If you own a mobile home, you may not receive your statement until mid-July). Do not look at your Notice of Proposed Taxes that was sent in November.
If your statement does not classify your property as a homestead, and you meet the necessary homestead qualifications, you must apply for homestead status in person at the Mille Lacs County Assessor’s Office. Be sure to call the office at 320-983-8311 prior to coming in to make sure you bring all of the necessary items. You must have occupied the home by December 1, and you must apply for homestead by December 15 of each year.
For information on how to file in these situations, see Homeowners - Special Instructions in the Minnesota Revenue’s Homestead Credit Refund (for Homeowners) and Renter’s Property Tax Refund (PDF) booklet.
Homeowners - Special Instructions
The Department of Revenue (DOR), County Assessors (CA), and the Division of Forestry (DOF) have partnered to offer Minnesota's forest landowners an additional option to reduce their property tax burden. Forest landowners are now able to participate in the 2c Managed Forest Land tax program. Learn more about classifications to better understand the land covered by this program.
Qualifying property owners are who own property that is:
The property must have a qualifying forest management plan in place and cannot be enrolled in the Sustainable Forest Incentive Act (SFIA).
The property must be no less than 20 acres in size; total enrolled acreage is limited to 1,920 acres statewide. The forest management plan must be developed by a Department of Natural Resources-approved forest management plan writer within the last 10 years.
A property that is improved with a structure that is not a minor ancillary non-residential structure (i.e. small shed or other primitive structure) or an improved building site that provides water, sewer, or electric hookups, will be split classed, with ten acres being assigned to the structure. Property receiving this classification cannot be enrolled in any other program. The Department of Natural Resources must confirm that the property qualifies and will annually verify that the property continues to qualify for the classification.
Along with a completed application, you must provide a copy of your property tax statement for each parcel of land you list on the application. You must also provide a copy of your Department of Natural Resources-approved management plan. The plan must include clear and accurate information, including maps that clearly define what property you want to include in the classification.
Download the application form (PDF) to get started.
Yes, your application and all required attachments must be sent to the County Assessor no later than May 1 for taxes payable the following year. If you do not provide all of the required information, your application will be delayed or denied.
The 2008 Legislature created a new classification for community service organizations such as:
Nonprofit community service oriented organizations that make charitable contributions and donations at least equal to the organization's previous year's property taxes, and that allow the property to be used for public and community meetings or events at no charge, may be eligible for the new classification.
Examples of qualifying public and community groups that must be allowed to hold events free of charge would include:
public and community
Private events and certain other groups/activities can be charged a fee to utilize an organization's facilities. Examples of private events/groups that can be charged a fee to use the facilities include:
A non-profit community service oriented organization is defined as any corporation, society, association, foundation, or institution organized and operated exclusively for charitable, religious, fraternal, civic, or education purposes, and which is exempt from federal income taxation pursuant to section 501(c)(3), (10) or (19) of the Internal Revenue Service Code of 1986, as amended through December 31, 1990.
non-profit community service oriented organization
Charitable contributions and donations are defined as having the same meaning as lawful gambling purposes under Minnesota Statutes, section 34912, subdivision 25, excluding those purposes relating to payment of taxes, assessment, fees, auditing costs, and utility.
Charitable contributions and donations
Revenue-producing activities include, but are not limited to, property or that portion of a property that is used as an on-sale intoxicating liquor establishment, a restaurant open to the public, bowling alley, a retail store, gambling conducted by organizations licensed under Chapter 3949, an insurance business, or office or other space leased or rented to a lessee who conducts a for-profit enterprise on the premises.
Applications can be obtained by contacting the Assessor's Office at 320-983-8311 or 888-280-8311. Complete the application and submit it to the County Assessor, along with all required documentation, by May 1 of each calendar year.
The Rural Preserve Program is designed to work in conjunction with the changes that were made to the Green Acres Program in 2008 and 2009. Qualifying class 2b land (land not currently being actively farmed) that was previously enrolled in Green Acres may be enrolled in Rural Preserve by May 1, 2013, without being subject to the payback of Green Acres deferred taxes. Learn more about classifications.
Rural Preserve provides property tax relief to taxpayers with eligible class 2b rural vacant land. The program is designed to mirror the Green Acre program which applies to class 2a (actively farmed) land. Like Green Acres, real estate taxes on enrolled land are based upon a value that is not influenced by outside factors, such as urban sprawl or demand by buyers for recreational uses.
For properties enrolled in Rural Preserve, taxes are calculated on both the estimated market value (higher value based on the highest and best use) and the agricultural value (lower value). Taxes are calculated on both values, but paid on the lower value each year. The difference between the tax calculated on the higher and lower values is deferred under Rural Preserve until the property is sold or no longer qualifies for the Rural Preserve Program.
When the property is sold, transferred, or no longer qualifies, the deferred tax for the current payable year and the two prior years must be paid to the county.
Simply stated, the agricultural value of a property is the value that the land contributes to an agricultural endeavor. Due to an insufficient number of agricultural sales, the Legislature has directed the Department of Revenue to develop a fair and equitable method for determining agricultural values for each county. Read more about how agricultural value is determined.
If you own class 2b rural vacant land (not currently being actively farmed) that was enrolled in Green Acres Program for taxes payable in 2008 and grandfathered into Green Acres for subsequent assessments, or if you own land that is part of an agricultural homestead that is enrolled in Green Acres, you may be eligible for Rural Preserve. Application must be made to the County Assessor.
Eligible acres must:
Rural Preserve applications must be filed with, and approved by, the County Assessor. The application must include the most recent available aerial photograph or satellite image of the property provided by the Farm Service Agency (FSA) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture that clearly outlines the land you wish to enroll. The County Assessor may also require that other supporting documents be submitted with the application to prove that the property meets all requirements for qualification.
Application forms are available at the County Assessor's Office.
For further information, look at the Rural Preserve Property Tax Program (Fact Sheet 15) (PDF). Please contact the Assessor's Office at 320-983-8311 or 888-280-8311, if you have specific questions about your property. For more information about taxes and programs, visit the Minnesota Department of Revenue.
No. The Mille Lacs County Attorney’s Office is prevented by law from answering legal questions or offering legal advice to private citizens. We do offer some resources for where you can obtain legal assistance or learn more about legal matters. Legal information and resources are also available via the Minnesota Judicial Branch Self Help Center and LawHelp Minnesota.
A subpoena is a court order requiring the recipient to testify in court. Witnesses are subpoenaed because they have relevant information regarding an alleged crime, and their testimony is essential to the outcome of a case. Employers and schools must allow persons who have been subpoenaed to respond without penalty.
Because a subpoena is a court order, you are required to appear unless released by the attorney who issued the subpoena. The judge has the authority to issue arrest warrants for witnesses found in contempt of court for failing to respond to a court order. Lack of transportation to court is not an excuse for release from a subpoena; not responding to a court subpoena can result in criminal charges.
Court can be slow and monotonous. Both the time of a witness' appearance and the duration of a particular proceeding can be difficult to predict for a number of reasons. Be prepared to spend time waiting to testify.
The Constitutions of the United States and the State of Minnesota guarantee each defendant the right to face his or her accusers. The Mille Lacs County Victim Witness Coordinator can also answer any further questions regarding testifying in court.
Crime victims and witnesses are not required to go to court unless subpoenaed. However, victims of a crime committed by an adult offender have the right to attend any hearings. Many juvenile hearings are closed to the public. The Victim Witness Coordinator is available to explain the proceedings and/or escort you to the courtroom.
Many people incorrectly believe that a victim has the power to press charges or drop charges. All crimes are considered offenses against the State, not solely against the victim.
The Mille Lacs County Attorney’s Office prosecutes criminal complaints on behalf of the State of Minnesota. Only the attorney prosecuting the case can decide to file or dismiss charges, although the victim’s voice is important in that decision. Many factors are considered when deciding whether to honor a victim’s request not to proceed with prosecution, including:
Victims may speak with the Victim Witness Coordinator about their feelings and/or wishes regarding whether or not a case moves forward.
Restitution is the financial responsibility of the defendant to the victim, and is only available if the defendant is convicted of a crime and the judge orders it be paid. It may only be ordered for expenses directly related to the crime, including property losses.
Reparations are financial assistance from the government, and are available to victims of violent crime regardless of whether the case is charged or the offender is convicted; however, reparations are only available for violent crimes reported to law enforcement.
More information is available from the Crime Victims Reparations Board. If a victim is identified in a criminal case, they will receive information by mail from the Victim Witness Coordinator that includes a restitution affidavit. If you need additional information about restitution or an application for reparations, contact the Victim Witness Coordinator.
Bail is a deposit of money to secure a defendant’s release. Bail is held by the court and may be forfeited if the defendant fails to make future court appearances, breaks the law, or violates conditions of release.
Bond, also known as bail bond, is paid by a third party (often a bail bondsman) in a contractual agreement with the defendant when the defendant is unable to afford bail.
Contact the Attorney General’s Office at 800-657-3787. The website contains links to a number of valuable resources and provides information about obtaining publications that explain the rights and responsibilities of both landlords and tenants. Other publications address issues unique to mobile home parks. Another excellent resource is the Minnesota Courts Self-Help Center.
You will need the name of the defendant; date of birth is helpful, if known. There are a few websites available that can be used to track defendants who may be in custody:
Crime victims may also receive a document from the Mille Lacs County Victim Witness Coordinator, informing a victim of sentencing information related to a defendant’s custody status.
Contact the police agency that created the report to request a copy. Please be aware that strict data practice laws govern the release of information related to an ongoing investigation or information related to minors.
For information regarding jury duty, please visit the Minnesota Judicial Branch's Jury Service.
Information about traffic tickets is available from Mille Lacs County Court Administration at 320-983-8313 or by making a payment on the Minnesota Judicial Branch's Payment Portal.
Anyone alleged of committing a crime between the ages of 10 and 17. If a child younger than 10 is alleged to have committed a crime, the matter is referred to the child welfare system.
The judge can order consequences that focus on rehabilitating the child and restoring them to law-abiding behavior. The judge has a broad range of consequences and programming available to achieve that goal, including:
More serious offenses may also result in court-ordered confinement in juvenile detention facilities.
Victim rights in juveniles proceedings are the same as those in adult proceedings according to the Minnesota Crime Victims Act. Victims in juvenile matters have the right to receive notice of charges, court hearings, plea negotiations, and dispositions. Victims also have the right to give a victim impact statement and also receive restitution according to the statute. Learn more about victim's rights and services in Mille Lacs County.
No, most juvenile proceedings are closed to the public. There is an exception for proceedings involving juvenile defendants charged with a felony-level offense who are over the age of 16 at the time of the crime.
No. The majority of children in need of foster care are on Medical Assistance or will be covered by their own private insurance. Call Community and Veterans Services at 320-983-8208 for more information.
Yes. You do not have to be married or have children of your own to be a foster parent. You do need to be at least 21 years of age. Call Community and Veterans Services at 320-983-8208 for more information.
Most children placed in foster care return to their birth parents or are placed with relatives. In a few cases parental rights are terminated. The agency is then required to first consider a permanent placement with relatives if that is in the best interests of the child. If relatives are not found to be appropriate, we would then consider all adults who have had a significant role in the child's life, including foster parents. Sometimes we do look for a foster/adoptive home when we know early on that parental rights will likely be terminated.
Call Community and Veterans Services at 320-983-8208 for more information.
Yes. You are encouraged to request age, gender, and duration of stay preferences. You can even choose a population whom you wish to work with:
You may own or rent a trailer home, apartment, condominium, or single family home. All are acceptable providing they meet safety standards. Some homes will require a Fire Inspection from the State Fire Marshall or other authorized fire inspector. Call Community and Veterans Services at 320-983-8208 for more information.
The majority of the time, families will know where the child is, and visits are scheduled as a part of the placement plan. If this knowledge would endanger the child or the foster family, the placement location would not be disclosed. Call Community and Veterans Services at 320-983-8208 for more information.
Mille Lacs County Community and Veterans Services provides all preliminary training to become a foster parent. On-going training is also provided through a variety of resources. Foster families are required to obtain 12 hours of training per year for the first 5 years of licensure. Formal training and experience in working with people (child or adult) is always a benefit. Anyone interested in becoming a foster parent should be open and willing to learn new skills and apply them within the foster care environment.
The following marks and abrasions can be strongly indicative of physical abuse especially when combined with a child’s description of how the injury was inflicted. Another strong indicator of child abuse is an explanation for injuries that would be unusual in a given age group. For example, a broken arm or leg in a four-month old child is blamed on a fall down the stairs.
Signs of physical abuse may include:
The best indicator of sexual abuse is a disclosure by the child regarding the sexual activity.
Other indicators may be:
Neglect can be indicated by a child who is chronically dirty or dressed inappropriately for the weather, a child who is frequently hungry or sleepy and reports being unable to eat or sleep regularly at home, a child who does not attend school regularly or one who has not been enrolled in school, a child who remains untreated or is treated inappropriately for a medical problem or a child who describes being left alone and unable to care for himself.
A good indicator of endangerment is a description by a child of events that may place him in danger such as being involved in a physical, domestic fight between adults in the home, seeing illegal drugs being used or sold, or having access to loaded guns kept in the home.
The most important reason to report child abuse is to protect the child from further abuse. Children have few resources for changing the circumstances of their lives, and children who are being hurt by their caretakers rely on the intervention of others to protect them. Reporting abuse is also a way to ensure that parents who need help but are not able to ask for it are offered parenting resources. Call Community and Veterans Services at 320-983-8208 for more information.
Describe the situation to child protection or Law Enforcement. Remember that often the most serious abuse occurs in private and away from anyone but the children involved. County Child Protection staff is available to answer questions regarding what is reportable. Call Community and Veterans Services at 320-983-8208 for more information.
Law Enforcement Departments and Mille Lacs County Child Protection are the agencies charged with receiving reports of child abuse occurring in Mille Lacs County. These agencies are also responsible for the joint investigation of child abuse allegations. You may report suspicions of child abuse to Law Enforcement Departments 24 hours a day by calling 911. The operator will ask you to describe the circumstances. You may also call Mille Lacs County Child Protection at 320-983-8208.
When reporting suspicions of child abuse, be prepared to provide as much information as you have including the names and addresses of the child and parents and specific data about what happened, who was involved, and when and where the events took place. Other helpful information is what school the child attends, who else might have information about the child’s situation, where the child is now, and the names of siblings or other members of the household.
Any report made to the Law Enforcement Department will automatically be cross-reported to Mille Lacs County Child Protection, as any report made to Mille Lacs County Child Protection will be sent to the Law Enforcement Department. This is included in the Minnesota State Statutes outlining requirements for child abuse investigations.
Minnesota law requires that any person whose job involves working professionally with children and who knows or has reason to believe that a child is being neglected or physically or sexually abused must immediately report the suspected incident to local Law Enforcement and/or child protection. The duty to report extends to childcare workers, school personnel, physical and mental health care providers, and law enforcement officers, among others. The report must be made immediately or within 24 hours, followed by a written report within 72 hours. You will need to complete the Child Abuse/Neglect reporting form.
Minnesota law requires reporting by mandated reporters who know or have reason to believe that a child is being abused or has been abused within the past three years. A mandated reporter who fails to make a report under those circumstances may be found guilty of a misdemeanor. Call Community and Veterans Services at 320-983-8208 for more information.
No, you will not. Anyone reporting in good faith (with a reasonable belief) may not be criminally prosecuted or sued in civil court for:
A person who knowingly or recklessly makes a false report is not protected from prosecution or civil suit.
Unfortunately, sexual abuse is not as uncommon as we would like to think it is. It affects both girls and boys of all ages, from every kind of neighborhood and of all races. Studies have found that about one of every four girls and one of every eight boys has reported incidents of sexual abuse. In 85% of reported sexual abuse cases, the offender is known to the child as a friend, relative, or neighbor.
Talking with children about the privacy of their bodies and what are appropriate kinds of touching is a precaution; like teaching them to cross the street safely, wear seat belts, and not to play with matches. Teaching kids good boundaries helps to keep them safe. Not talking about these issues won’t make them go away.
Teaching young children that their bodies are private doesn’t have to be about sex. It can be as simple as reminding children that the parts of their bodies covered by a swimsuit are private.
CodeRED® is a high-speed mass notification system used to alert the citizens of Mille Lacs County in the event of an impending or actual emergency in Mille Lacs County. CodeRED® is one of three systems used in Mille Lacs County to alert the citizens, the other two being the outdoor warning sirens and the Emergency Alert System.
Yes! The CodeRED® Emergency Communications Network (ECN) can email you, text you, call your VoIP phone, your landline and your cell phone. Go to the CodeRED® Community Notification Enrollment page and add the information under your personal profile.
Just remember though, if you change telephone numbers, email address or telephone service providers you will need to update your information.
Yes, Please go to the CodeRED® Community Notification Enrollment page. When completing the online form you must click on the TTY option.
No, Mille Lacs County respects your privacy. CodeRED® will be used regarding time-sensitive general and emergency notifications that only authorized officials have access to the CodeRED® system.
The CodeRED® database contains information received from public databases, including regional phonebooks; however, no resident should assume that their information is in the system. If you cannot register online, you can contact Mille Lacs County Central Dispatch or Mille Lacs County Emergency Management by calling 320-983-8288.
Yes, please go to the CodeRED® Community Notification Enrollment page.
Please note that emergency calls can only be delivered to a direct dial number. Automated attendants will disrupt the process and calls will not be delivered.
Yes. The CodeRED® Mobile Alert app can be downloaded for free on Google Play and iTunes. It provides advanced, real-time, hyperlocal alerts to subscribers within the reach of a given location generated by public safety officials across the United States and Canada.
Yes, you must live in, or operate a business in Mille Lacs County in order to receive emergency notifications through CodeRED®.
The CodeRED® system is capable of contacting all county residents or specific geographical areas. You may not be called if an emergency is occurring in a specific area of the county and is contained to that area.
After you enter your address, a push pin will reflect your exact location on the map.
CodeRED® is an emergency notification service that allows emergency officials to notify residents and businesses by telephone, cell phone, text message, email and social media regarding time-sensitive general and emergency notifications. Only authorized officials have access to the CodeRED® system. It will only be used in emergencies to notify citizens of things like:
Most residential and business land lines are in the system as well as some cell phones. The best way to be sure is to register! This will allow you to receive messages on your home phone, cell phone, by text message and email.
The Alternative Care (AC) Program is a state-funded cost-sharing program that supports certain home- and community-based services for eligible Minnesotans, age 65 and over. This program provides home- and community-based services to prevent and delay transitions to nursing facility level of care. The program prevents the impoverishment of eligible seniors and shares the cost of care with clients by maximizing use of their own resources. It is administered by counties and tribal health agencies. Call the Senior LinkAge Link® at 800-333-2433 for more information about the program.
The following are the services offered:
A person age 65 and older who is assessed through the Long-Term Care Consultation process is eligible for Alternative Care funding when the following criteria are met:
Contact your county’s social services or public health department at 320-983-8208. Call the Senior LinkAge Link® at 800-333-2433 for more information about the program.
Log on to Minnesota Help.Info for more information. It is an online directory of services designed to help people in Minnesota identify resources such as human services, information and referral, financial assistance, and other forms of aid and assistance within Minnesota. It is especially rich in resource information for seniors and their caregivers, people with disabilities and their caregivers, parents, and families and low-income people. This information is available in other forms to people with disabilities by contacting us at 651-431-2600. TTY users can call through Minnesota Relay at 800-627-3529. For Speech to Speech Relay, call 877-627-3848. For additional assistance with legal rights and protections for equal access to human services programs, contact our agency’s ADA coordinator by calling 320-983-8208.
This information was obtained from the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) website.
The Elderly Waiver (EW) program funds home- and community-based services for people age 65 and older who are eligible for Medical Assistance (MA) and require the level of care provided in a nursing home, but choose to reside in the community. The Minnesota Department of Human Services operates the EW program under a federal waiver to Minnesota’s Medicaid State Plan. Counties, tribal entities and health plan partners administer the program. Call the Senior LinkAge Line at 800-333-2433 for more information about the program.
The following services are available:
Call the Senior LinkAge Line at 800-333-2433 for more information about the program.
Those eligible for the Elderly Waiver program are 65 or older, eligible for Medical Assistance and need nursing home level of care as determined by the Long-Term Care Consultation process. The Elderly Waiver (EW) service cost for an individual cannot be greater than the estimated nursing home cost for that same individual. Call the Senior LinkAge Line at 800-333-2433 for more information about the program.
Probable alternatives include Medicaid-certified skilled nursing facilities and certified board-and-care homes. The average cost of these alternative settings is $4,948 per person, per month. Call the Senior LinkAge Line at 800-333-2433 for more information about the program.
The Elderly Waiver program is described in Minnesota Statutes 256B.0915.
More information about managed care for seniors is on the Department of Health Services (DHS) website.
Contact your county’s social services or public health department at 320-983-8208. If you are already on Medical Assistance and enrolled in a health plan, you should contact your health plan.
See Chapter 26A of the provider manual. Call the Senior LinkAge Line at 800-333-2433 for more information about the program.
This information was obtained from the Minnesota Department of Health Services (DHS) website.
Long-Term Care Consultation (LTCC) Services include a variety of services designed to help people make decisions about long-term care needs. Long-term care consultants help people and their families choose services and supports that reflect their needs and preferences. Contact the Community and Veterans Services at 320-983-8208 for more information.
LTCC services are provided by county agency staff and require the expertise of both social workers and public health nurses. Tribes and health plans also provide some LTCC services to people they serve under contracts with the Department of Human Services.
What activities are included in Long-Term Care Consultation Services?
In-person screenings are required in some situations, such as determining eligibility for waiver services. These are conducted in hospitals, nursing facilities, other supported living situations such as housing with services settings and in people’s homes.
LTCC services are also intended to reduce nursing facility admissions and subsequent costs by ensuring only appropriate admission to these facilities. The Pre-Admission Screening program assesses an individual’s health status and level of independence in key areas of daily living to determine if he or she needs this level of service. This assessment also provides screening for people for possible mental illness or developmental disabilities in order to prevent inappropriate admissions to nursing facilities of people who need different services. These assessments must be completed for all applicants to facilities regardless of assets, income or the potential source of payment. Counties, tribes and health plans also are required to use the assessment and support planning process to determine the appropriateness of Medicaid or state-funded alternatives to nursing facilities for people who need NF level of care.
Contact the Community and Veterans Services at 320-983-8208 for more information or view the State of Minnesota website.
Members serve full-time (40 hours per week) for the 11-month term at the host site organization, anticipated start date of September 26, 2018 through late August 2019.
Applicants may indicate the focus area and region of the state where they prefer to serve on the application.
Members receive a living stipend of up to $1,428 per month, are eligible for health insurance and loan forbearance, and earn an education award of $5,920 after the successful completion of the AmeriCorps term, which may be used for future education or to repay qualified student loans.
During the service term, members:
Visit GreenCorps to learn more about the program, review position summaries, and apply. Minnesota GreenCorps member applications are due by 5 p.m. Central Time on June 18, 2018. Qualified applicants may be contacted for an interview in June or July 2018.
Please review the member eligibility requirements and qualifications listed in the Application Guidance document before applying. If you require an alternative format or any other reasonable accommodation for the application or interview process please email the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency or call 651-757-2055.
All submissions are confidential. The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and the Minnesota GreenCorps Program do not discriminate with regard to race, sex, color, creed, religion, age, national origin, disability, marital status, familial status, status with regard to public assistance, sexual orientation, or membership or activity in a local commission as defined by law. Reasonable accommodations provided upon request.
911 is for emergencies or situations that could become emergencies, review the following before calling:
If the situation seems urgent and has the potential to become dangerous, call 911. Dispatchers will determine whether your call should be handled by 911 or can be transferred to another person or agency. All other calls should be directed to our non-emergency number, 320-983-8257.
The MLCCC frequently receives accidental or unintentional 911 calls. You may bump your cell phone and it will dial 911 (pocket dial). If you are trying to dial out and/or dial long distance, if the number is not dialed fast enough, 911 is dialed. Accidental dials happen and we would ask that you stay on the phone. Let us know it was an accident and how it happened. We may ask your name and location.
If you hang up, our policy is to call you back. We need to know if everything is okay or if there is an actual emergency. If the phone is not answered when we call back, if the location is known, we will send law enforcement to assess the situation. If the location is unknown, we will contact the cell phone provider.
Emergency dispatchers need to get accurate information to allow law enforcement to make the best decision on how to approach the situation. Dispatchers handling law enforcement, fire, and ambulance calls must also consider the well-being of the public and the safety of the responding units. The information you provide a dispatcher is relayed to responding units while they are on their way to the call.
He had a long beard
He/she was at least 6 feet tall
He/she was wearing a red jacket
I am fighting with my husband/wife
I see a fight at the Dairy Queen in Milaca
There is a 2 vehicle accident at Highway 23 and Highway 169
You should be prepared to answer questions like the following:
When the call is answered you should tell the dispatcher the following:
The call-taker will then ask you to stay on the line while they transfer you to North Ambulance for pre-arrival instructions.
The Sheriff's Office dispatches for the following agencies:
Emergency Management Services
The same dispatchers who answer 911 calls also answer the non-emergency calls for service for all law enforcement agencies in Mille Lacs County. When the communication center is busy, communications officers have to ask the non-emergency callers to hold on while they answer the 911 calls.
Dispatchers may also ask you to hold while they relay your information on to responding units. Every effort is made to get back to you as quickly as possible, and your patience and understanding is appreciated.
The first phase of park development will be complete by late spring 2015. It includes a picnic area with four tables (one of which is wheelchair accessible), two grills, and horseshoes pits; Wi-Fi is available for free. There is also a portable restroom available.
The landscaping has been completely revamped to replace excess lawn with native plant communities to reduce long-term maintenance costs, provide a source of seeds in the heart of the Township, and serve as a demonstration for residents.
Prior to establishing the park, the Town had owned the 7 acres of land surrounding the Hall which had been little used. Funding for the purchase of all amenities and improvements came from a combination of grants from the Rum River Community Foundation and private donors of cash and materials. Labor was provided by volunteers. The Town covers basic maintenance such as lawn mowing and repairs; total public spending on the grounds has decreased as a result of this project.
The Page Township Board of Supervisors is the ultimate authority for the park area. They are advised by a volunteer Park Advisory Committee that proposes projects and recommends spending priorities.
The picnic area may be reserved for an additional fee by groups who are renting the Hall; there is no guarantee of availability if it not reserved. In order to preserve public access, it may not be rented two Saturdays in a row.
As of now, there are no specific plans for future development of the 7 acres of land owned by the Township. The Parkland Strategy adopted by the Board of Supervisors proposes the eventual addition of a playground, shelter for the picnic area, and playing courts (volleyball or basketball).
Additional input from residents and visitors is welcome! Grant funding and donations will be sought to pay for all such improvements.
You will need to obtain a driveway application permit from the Mille Lacs County Public Works Department if you are on a CSAH or County Road.
Minnesota Department of Transportation regularly removes signs placed within their right-of-way. For more information please contact them by calling 800-657-3961.
Review the Environmental Resources page for more information.
Contact the Land Services Office.
Call the Mille Lacs County Public Works Department at 320-983-8201 for general right-of-way widths on CSAH or County Roads. For specific property information, contact the Land Services Office.
This is a function of the State of Minnesota.
Call the Mille Lacs County Public Works Department at 320-983-8201 if you are on a CSAH or County Road. If you are not on a CSAH or County Road, see the Road Jurisdiction page for the proper road authority.
Watch the website or call 320-983-8201. Information will be posted annually on the website, and will be updated before spring thaw.
Contact the Mille Lacs County Auditor/Treasurer's office. They have maps and platbooks for sale.
You need to obtain a mailbox permit application from the Mille Lacs County Public Works Department if you are on a CSAH or County road. Permits are available online or by mail, call 320-983-8201 to request a permit.
Check the Road Jurisdiction page for the proper road authority.
It is a naturally occurring, radioactive gas. Radon is colorless, tasteless, colorless, and odorless, so it is undetectable by our senses. Radon is released from the natural breakdown of uranium and radium in our soil, rock, and water. As radium disintegrates, it turns into radioactive gas, radon. Elevated levels of radon have been found in homes in every state. Radon is able to get into any type of building and build up to high levels. Homes that are new or old, drafty or air tight, big or small, and with or without a basement are all just as likely to have a radon problem.
If you are interested in receiving a test kit please contact the Mille Lacs County Community and Veterans Services office at 320-983-8208.
There are no known immediate symptoms from radon, whereas health problems are often seen after long exposures to elevated levels of radon indoors. In the outdoor air it is harmlessly dispersed. When radon in the air is inhaled into the lungs the process of radioactive decay begins. This leads to the DNA of our sensitive lung tissue being damaged both physically and chemically.
Scientists and researchers categorize radon as a Group A carcinogen meaning that there is no known acceptable level of exposure and that it has been demonstrated to cause cancer. Other Group A carcinogens include tobacco smoke and asbestos.
Radon is the number one cause of lung cancer in non-smokers and the second leading cause of lung cancer (after tobacco) in smokers. Thankfully, this risk should be entirely preventable through awareness and testing.
While radon is present everywhere, and there is no known, safe level, your greatest exposure is where it can concentrate and where you spend most time - at home. If you are interested in receiving a test kit please contact the Mille Lacs County Community and Veterans Services office at 320-983-8208.
High radon exists in every state is the U.S. In Minnesota, 2 out of every 5 homes have radon levels that pose a significant health risk, and nearly 80% of Minnesota's counties are rated high radon zones. If you are interested in receiving a test kit please contact the Mille Lacs County Community and Veterans Services office at 320-983-8208.
Since radon is produced from soil, it is present nearly everywhere. Because soil is absorbent, radon gas is able to move up through the dirt and rocks, enters the home and moves freely throughout the indoor air in which we breathe. Radon may enter a home anywhere there is an opening between the home and soil.
These openings include cracks in a foundation, floor drains, sump pumps, dirt floor crawl spaces, and numerous others. The amount of radon in the home will vary according to the amount of radon in the source material and the rate at which it is able to enter the building. The level of radon is often highest in the lowest part of a building.
Anyone can use a "do-it-yourself" test kit to check his or her home. There are short-term and long-term test kits available.
Short-term test kits should remain in the home for two to seven days, depending on the device. Weather conditions and opening and closing of windows will affect radon levels within a home. Using the short-term test will give the homeowner a snapshot of the home's radon level.
The long-term test (3 to 12 months), gives the user a year-round average level of radon. The best way to estimate the year-round average of radon in a home is to test for a full year. Results from long-term radon tests can realistically be used to decide whether or not to mitigate a home. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends that for homes, initial measurements be short-term tests placed in the lowest lived-in level. Short-term testing in closed building conditions helps residents quickly learn if a home has high levels of radon.
Homeowners can contact a qualified radon reduction contractor if they are concerned about the high levels of radon found in their home.
There are several things they can do; sealing cracks and other openings in the foundation is a simple way to start. This by itself will not lower the levels consistently or significantly. Venting units including fans and pipes, called sub-slab depressurization, is used most often and effectively to reduce levels of radon. The most efficient method will depend on the home's design and the specific cause of the problem.
The Minnesota Department of Health has this information on their website. Radon problems usually can be repaired for about the same amount as other common home repairs (washer or dryer, new hot water heater installed). On average, mitigation services will cost between $200 and $2,500. The price is largely dependent on your home's construction and the strength of the radon source. If you are interested in receiving a test kit please contact the Mille Lacs County Community and Veterans Services office at 320-983-8208.
Radon test kits can be purchased at most hardware stores and range in price from $5 to $25. Mille Lacs County Community and Veteran Services is offering radon test kits free to Mille Lacs County residents, while supplies last. Mille Lacs County has a limited supply of test kits. If you are interested in receiving a test kit please contact the Mille Lacs County Community and Veterans Services office at 320-983-8208. If you are not a Mille Lacs County resident, please contact your local public health department and ask about radon test kits.