Schools chart path after levy votes, Rochester family living in fear, the racino remedy

Owatonna schools look to future after referendum fails by ten votes

“Somebody wins, somebody loses and we move on,” says Doug Belmore who actively promoted the referendum, but he says he’s not bitter. “I think it’s really important for us as a community to come together and look at what do we want to do here,” Belmore says (KAAL).

With red light on spending, what now for Duluth schools?

Some voters said Tuesday that they voted against the school levy because they couldn’t afford it. Others said they didn’t feel the school district communicated clearly enough where the money would go. Whatever the reason for Tuesday’s levy rejection, the district now faces a $4-5 million deficit (Duluth News Tribune).

After levy vote, schools decide budgets

“What is it the parents and grandparents want for the children of Royalton schools?” Royalton Supertintendent Jon Ellerbusch asked. He said the district funding is good enough for students to achieve high school diplomas but not good enough if the goal is to prepare students for college (Saint Cloud Times).

Rochester family living in fear after more vandalism

Muhubo Karey’s property has been vandalized several times. She and her family say they are scared to live in their own home. They’ve heard people scream threats as they drive by such as “You don’t belong here, go back to your country, we’ll kill you,” said Karey (KAAL).

MF Global fallout hits grain elevators

The collapse of MF Global is sending shockwaves across rural Minnesota, where grain elevators and some farmers are stunned to find their commodity accounts threatened by the distant scandal (Pioneer Press).

SEC charges 2 local hedge fund managers tied to Petters scheme

Agency wants Arrowhead Capital, leaders to be banned and to repay “ill-gotten gains” (Star Tribune).

Commissioner accused of violating meetings law, overstepping authority

In 10 months as a Wabasha County Commissioner Deb Roschen overstepped her authority by implying she would cut the county sheriff’s department’s budget after the sheriff did not support state legislation she favored, and sought to terminate a county social services employee after the employee blamed county budget cuts for a delay in services, according to documents and county officials (Winona Daily News). An effort to recall Roschen is underway.

Racino could be best option to pay for stadium

A report released Wednesday said slot machines located at Minnesota’s two horse racing tracks would generate enough annual revenue to build the Vikings stadium with plenty left over for education. Lawmakers are looking at this new report, completed in just the last couple of weeks. It’s an idea supporters said could be the least complicated way to a Vikings stadium without raising new taxes (WCCO).

NLRB finds Jimmy John’s illegally threatened and fired employees backing union

The National Labor Relations Board issued a complaint Wednesday finding that Twin Cities Jimmy John’s owned by MikLin Enterprises unlawfully threatened, disciplined and terminated workers for engaging in union activities (Minnesota Independent).

Locked-out ND workers press for jobless benefits

More than 100 American Crystal Sugar Co. workers and their supporters rallied at the North Dakota Capitol on Wednesday (MPR News).

Layoffs announced at Larson Manufacturing in Clear Lake

One of the areas largest employers announced layoffs Wednesday. Larson Manufacturing will be closing their facility in Clear Lake, leaving 68 people without work.That plant will be moving to the one in Lake Mills. Larson’s president Jeff Rief, said it’s a move that is needed to strengthen the company (KAAL).

Study finds NDSU underfunded, not enough professors

NDSU has too few faculty for the number of students and is significantly underfunded, a new study finds. An independent risk assessment of the North Dakota University System also raises concerns about whether state dollars are being appropriately disbursed to the state’s 11 colleges and universities (Forum of Fargo Moorhead).

Mower County seeking inmates to fill jail

The Mower County Jail has averaged about 60 inmates since it opened last December, but the county is looking for ways to increase those numbers by taking on inmates from other counties (Austin Daily Herald).

Duluth a mecca for hikers and cyclists?

Duluth officials want to build on the city’s existing network of trails to create the country’s premier urban area for hiking and biking (Duluth News Tribune).

Saint Cloud area vehicle sales increase beyond previous years

The new- and used-vehicle market generally lags two years behind the overall economy, according to Scott Lambert, executive vice president of MADA. If so, and there’s really a recovery under way, that explains why cars and trucks have been moving at a brisk pace this year (Saint Cloud Times).

Election 2011: Local issues drive shakeups in Moorhead

The people have spoken, and local government leaders heard loud and clear. Tuesday’s municipal elections in Minnesota forced high turnover in some area cities, with many longtime officeholders ousted in favor of new representation (Forum of Fargo Moorhead).

Police: Farmington man used pot operation to show child how business works

Officers also allege Craig Gisch employed his minor child to assist in the cultivation of marijuana, trimming, watering and repotting the plants (This Week Live).

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