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State Fun Police Shut Down Creative Drive-in-Movie Night At Birch’s On the Lake

The War on Fun continues in Minnesota, as state health officials nixed a plan that would have allowed families to enjoy a drive-in-movie and a meal at Birch's On the Lake, a popular eatery in Long Lake, Minnesota, from the safety of their cars. The restaurant came up with the innovative idea because their revenues were down by 70 percent while doing only take out orders during Governor Walz's Stay at Home order, according to WCCO. Stir-crazy Minnesotans jumped at the chance to get out of the house and enjoy a movie. “It sold out in a day,” said Burton Joseph, the...

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Dunwoody 3D Printing Instructor Supports Medical Heroes by Designing Ear Savers

As our health care heroes continue to work tirelessly on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis, they often find themselves wearing face masks for extended periods of time. But wearing the masks for hours upon end has caused many medical professionals to suffer from ear irritation. In response, Dunwoody College of Technology alumna and current 3D Printing Instructor Jazmine Darden started designing, printing, and donating "ear savers."...

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Why this is not the right time to push for higher minimum wage

In the wake of the coronavirus, state governments got to decide what businesses are essential and which ones are not. Some of the essential businesses ended up being the ones that pay low wages; grocery stores, trucking companies, cleaning companies. There is a good explanation for this occurrence; a lot of essential jobs are associated with the service industry and the service industry is not as highly productive as other sectors of the economy. Hence the low wages of the workers in the service industry. But that has not stopped people calling for higher wages for these "essential workers". The  following...

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Walz Should Look to Local Governments on How to Make Necessary Cuts Due to Covid

Gov. Tim Walz and his administration finally have to come to terms with the somber new fiscal reality for state government given the newly announced forecast of a $2.4 billion deficit staring him in the face. The governor and his lieutenants could do worse than look to local governments across the state for guidance on where and how to make necessary cuts in spending and personnel. Many cities and counties began dealing with the budgetary tsunami headed their way several weeks ago. The city of St. Cloud, for example, swung into action within days of Walz's March 13 emergency order,  according...

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Lakefield City Council Won’t Enforce Governor Walz’s Stay At Home Order

A small town in Southwestern Minnesota has decided enough is enough. Last night, the Lakefield City Council voted to take a stand against Gov. Tim Walz’s stay-at-home order and temporary closure of bars, restaurants and other places of public accommodation in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The City Council pledged to not direct any city resources to enforcing the orders, according to the Lakefield Standard. The council passed a resolution affirming the city as a “constitutional and business-friendly community” on a 3-2 vote following a lengthy and sometimes heated discussion. To my knowledge, this vote represents the first city in the state...

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Parents concerned their child won’t be prepared for next school year, education advocates favor extending it

According to a national survey by the University of Southern California, there is still concern among some parents that their child won’t be prepared for the next school year. When asked how schools should come back from lost classroom instruction, teachers would prefer to begin the next school year with the next grade’s instruction, administrators favored picking up next year where classroom instruction was interrupted this year, and education advocates and policymakers favored extending the next school year. ...

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Access to childcare is essential to reopening the economy

States are starting to open back up some of their non essential businesses. With that has come one issue: parents are having a hard time accessing childcare. The issue is especially acute in states like Texas where childcare providers can only accept children of essential workers. This has proven as a dilemma for parents who have to work and might lose unemployment benefits if they do not go back to work. While some centers in Texas are operating at less than full capacity and would be able to take in more children, the state does not currently allow them to. But...

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Does MN have the Nation’s Highest Rate of Covid-Related Deaths in Long-Term Care Facilities?

Minnesota has the highest percentage of deaths tied to long-term care facilities as a share of total state deaths attributed to Covid-19 according to currently available date from 30 states posted by the Kaiser Family Foundation, a national clearing house tracking the impact of the virus. Through Sunday, some 80 percent of Minnesota deaths attributed to the new coronavirus--338 out of 419 fatalities--were connected to long-term care facilities or nursing homes, according to the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH). The next closest states were Rhode Island (71%), Massachusetts (63%), Delaware (61%) and Pennsylvania (60%). State health officials say the majority of assisted-living...

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