Minnesota candy story allowed to re-open, deemed “essential”
Jordan-based Jim’s Apple Farm, also known as “Minnesota’s Largest Candy Store,” re-opened on Friday, May 8 after owner Robert Wagner met with Gov. Tim Walz’s staff and received the go-ahead, reports SW News Media.
The candy store got the green light to open about six weeks ago, after Wagner met with Gov. Tim Walz’s staff to give an overview of the businesses [sic] roots and ongoing operations in agriculture.
According to Kare 11 News, the governor’s task force only needed three days to indicate the store “met the qualifications of an essential business” and could open. Wagner told Kare 11 he “consulted CDC recommendations” while developing new safety routines and protocols in the store, which include clear plastic dividers between candy aisles and at the checkout counter, arrows taped on the floor to direct foot traffic, and allowing a “maximum of 200” customers in the store at one time.
The store’s reopening has upset other small business owners who operate facilities that may only have five to 10 persons in them at a time, if customer-facing at all, but are still closed because the state has not responded to their requests for approval to re-open, according to Alpha News.
“It makes me mad that there isn’t one standard,” said a small business owner who runs a clothing shop in Southern Minnesota. “The only difference between us and them is that I don’t have the governor’s phone number, I don’t know the governor… a lot of people are very mad.”
The Center’s Back to Work MN campaign has put immense pressure on Gov. Walz and legislators to end the stay at home mandate and allow businesses to reopen and Minnesotans to get back to work. In addition, the Upper Midwest Law Center recently filed suit on behalf of multiple Minnesota churches and small business owners to strike down Walz’s unilateral shutdown emergency executive orders, citing they interfere with constitutionally protected religious and business activities that are able to comply with CDC guidelines.