By HOWARD LESTRUD
ECM Political Editor
It appears there will be no requests for additional state funding for Camp Ripley during the 2013 session of the Minnesota Legislature, says Col. Scott St. Sauver, commander of the 53,000-acre regional training facility for military, federal, state, local and civilian communities. Camp Ripley is located six miles west of Little Falls.
Bonding totaling $19.5 million was approved last year by the Legislature to build a new education complex.
Col. St. Sauver calls himself the mayor of this large facility which spans 18 miles in length and 5 1/2 miles in width. He praises the facility’s upgraded training components and says in training simulation, Camp Ripley’s only limitation is imagination. Camp Ripley is called one of the largest National Guard training sites within the United States.
Camp Ripley is most known for being a training facility for military units including the Minnesota National Guard. It has also served as a training host for troops from Norway and Croatia and from Illinois, Iowa, South Dakota, Wyoming, North Dakota and Georgia.
Commander St. Sauver led a tour of ECM Publishers Editorial Board members recently, showing board members the camp’s upgraded training facilities.
Most recently, a new 4.3-mile Emergency Vehicle Operations Course (EVOC) was opened at Camp Ripley and it includes a four-lane divided highway, gravel roadways, a 300-foot by 700-foot skill pad with the ability to create icy or wet surfaces, a freeway-type lighting system and .6 miles of winding road through a wooded area.
For the full story, see the Thursday, Dec. 13 print edition of the Times.