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Layoffs Due to Virus Lead to Dissension at Duluth City Hall

Duluth faces a potential $38 million budget shortfall Mayor Emily Larson calls "absolutely catastrophic" in the wake of declining tax revenue  projections due to the economic impact of the coronavirus. The dire predicament forced the city to lay off some 100 employees, implement a hiring freeze, as well as shutter a golf course and other city facilities. City officials laid it on the line at a recent virtual city council meeting covered by the Duluth News Tribune. Noah Schuchman, Duluth's chief administrative officer, explained that in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, the city had asked staff to work from home to the...

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Uprising in Garrison as Minnesota business owners fight for their livelihoods

Anger and frustration are mounting among restaurant and bar owners throughout Minnesota. Many—especially those in Central Minnesota’s beautiful lakes vacation area—are watching their livelihoods slip away, due to Gov. Tim Walz’s repeated extensions of his coronavirus shutdown order. Recently, 50 or so of these small business owners met in Garrison, in Crow Wing County, to discuss the possibility of opening their establishments despite the governor’s dictates. The pain they expressed radiates from the Brainerd Dispatch’s coverage of the meeting: As a spring snowfall kept the bite quiet and drove anglers off the lakes during the fishing opener May 9, bar owner Scott...

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High unemployment is what the economy ends up with when unemployment pays more than going to work

While there is a need to cushion workers from financial loss that comes with unemployment, there is a risk that come with giving people money while they stay at home; they will not have much need to earn money by working. This risk is there whether there is a pandemic or not. But that risk was magnified when the employment payouts were especially increased by a large margin. And this might become a problem for small businesses who cannot afford to pay their workers more. ...

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Fed survey finds that Job losses have hit poor Americans the hardest

Thirteen percent of adults, representing 20 percent of people who had been working in February, reported that they lost a job or were furloughed in March or the beginning of April 2020. These job losses were most severe among workers with lower incomes. Thirty-nine percent of people working in February with a household income below $40,000 reported a job loss in March. Another 6 percent of all adults had their hours reduced or took unpaid leave. Taken together, 19 percent of all adults reported either losing a job or experiencing a reduction in work hours in March....

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Some Businesses Set to Reopen Regardless of Walz’s Expected Extension of Shutdown

Those in the know expect Gov. Tim Walz to extend his two months and counting stay-at-home order due to the threat of the coronavirus in a virtual address later today to Minnesotans. But there's trouble brewing among some frustrated and increasingly desperate small business owners who view the state's approach as a one-size-fits-all plan that's out-of-touch with conditions on the ground, particularly in exurban and rural areas. Some employers contend they have little choice but to take matters into their own hands and reopen for business tomorrow regardless of what Walz announces or the potential legal consequences,  according to the Pioneer...

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Unemployment kills too

While it may seem like the choice is between either saving the economy or saving people's lives, that is not the case.Closing the economy altogether in order to save lives is also throwing people's lives away. By extending the lock down, states are denying People of their livelihoods, social ties as well as their sense of security possibly leading to the aforementioned deaths of despair. There is definitely a choice that has to be made, but that choice is not between rising unemployment or death, because unemployment also kills. ...

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