County commissioners review online county court hearings

By Tom Hintgen

Otter Tail County Correspondent

Manufacturing provides more than 4,000 highly skilled, well-paying jobs which significantly contributes to Otter Tail County’s high standard of living. County commissioners point out that there are 87 manufacturing companies in the county, making a wide range of products

Workers took home $235.8 million in wages from Otter Tail County manufacturing jobs in 2022, the largest total payroll among private sector industries;

The manufacturing industry also is a critically important part of Minnesota’s and Otter Tail County’s diverse economy. Manufacturing contributed $58.7 billion to Minnesota’s economy in 2022, representing 13 percent of the state’s gross domestic product.

Online county court hearings reviewed

County Commissioner Kurt Mortenson of rural Underwood gave a brief update on his meeting with Minnesota District Court Judges Kevin Miller and Michael Fritz regarding the use of virtual court hearings. 

They noted that the input and feedback received by the steering committee strongly supported the continued use of virtual hearings for the type of hearings where usage can serve both the interests of the parties and the court. 

They further acknowledged and recognized the concerns and challenges that virtual hearings can present. However, they look to guidance from the judicial council on how best to address issues raised by stakeholders. 

“For now and likely into the future, virtual hearings will continue to be a part of the judicial system,” Mortenson said.