Press and News http://pressnews.com Fri, 24 Oct 2014 18:04:33 +0000 en-US hourly 1 ECM should renounce Emmer endorsement http://pressnews.com/2014/10/24/ecm-should-renounce-emmer-dndorsement/ http://pressnews.com/2014/10/24/ecm-should-renounce-emmer-dndorsement/#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 18:01:30 +0000 http://pressnews.com/?p=132162 To the Editor:

When ECM gave Tom Emmer the “nod” in its publication-wide endorsement, it came with “caveats.” The endorsement could easily have been interpreted as a signal that he skates on thin ice, as ECM appeared to condition it on one critical premise made “for the public’s sake”: Emmer must agree to debate John Denney (I) and Joe Perske (D). Emmer contradicted ECM’s wishes on October 13 when he dodged a transportation forum in Denney’s hometown, Forest Lake. Since then, Emmer developed a pattern of leaving Sixth District voters behind.

Emmer dodged another debate Oct. 17 when St. Cloud State University cancelled the debate it slated for the end of this month, reasoning that “it took too long to hear back from all candidates.” Notably, Denney accepted SCSU’s invitation on September 10 and Perske accepted shortly after. On Sept. 28, SCSU reported that Emmer never replied to their invite. It is not surprising that Emmer dodged this debate, as Denney is a SCSU alum, who recently unveiled a new plan to resolve the student loan debt crisis.

On Oct. 20, when Denney and Perske arrived at the Big Lake Chamber of Commerce forum, again, Emmer was nowhere to be found. Event organizers frustratingly reported that Emmer failed to respond to several invitations.

In dodging these debates, Emmer has withheld from voters the opportunity “to size up the candidates.” Some may argue that the voters’ proper recourse would be to simply not vote for him. However, ECM holds the keys to a much more appropriate remedy. That is, for the public’s sake, ECM must immediately renounce the Emmer endorsement.

John Matthew Schwietz,

Legal Counsel, John Denney for Congress

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Bunting: Ihli, Gorecki, Bell in Rogers http://pressnews.com/2014/10/24/bunting-ihli-gorecki-bell-in-rogers/ http://pressnews.com/2014/10/24/bunting-ihli-gorecki-bell-in-rogers/#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 18:00:15 +0000 http://pressnews.com/?p=132160 To the Editor:

I support Bruce Gorecki and Rob Bell for Rogers City Council, and Rick Ihli for mayor.

For over a decade Bruce has been involved in supporting our community as a president and active member of the Lions Club. He also serves as a Planning Commissioner for Rogers. Bruce understands the issues affecting our city. Bruce has clearly stated his goals: Safety of our residents, keeping up with infrastructure demands, such as road building and improvement, and fiscal responsibility — keeping taxes in check while ensuring services necessary for our community remain in place.

Rob served Rogers five years on the Planning Commission and four on the City Council. Under his leadership Rogers managed extreme growth and an economic downturn, yet kept Rogers taxes flat when surrounding communities’ taxes shot up. Rob always has best interests of Rogers in mind. He is conservative, but “not to the point of irresponsibility,” to use his words. He will work to make decisions with long-term goals and focus on the primary “core” functions of government. Ensuring infrastructure meets our needs and guiding development in a direction that is right for Rogers are two of his top priorities.

These two men will serve Rogers well.

I also support Rick Ihli for Mayor of Rogers.

Even in a declining economy, Rick helped lead Rogers to the lowest tax rate of any city in our area, yet continued to offer expanded and improved services. This is why in 2013 Rogers was ranked the Best Place to Raise Children in Minnesota by Bloomberg Businessweek and why we were ranked a 2014 Top 10 City to Live in Minnesota by Movoto.

Rick has a long history of community involvement. He’s been involved in Dist. 728 activities, he’s a past president of the Rogers Lions Club and he served three years on the Planning Commission before serving his current term on the City Council. He is knowledgeable of the issues affecting our community.

Rick will continue to focus on low taxes, transportation improvement, increased public safety, parks and recreational activities, safe routes to school and making our community a better place to live. He will continue to pursue the best development opportunities, like the two million square feet of building that’s taken place in the last two years. Rick has always supported doing what is right for Rogers.

Rick is the right person to lead Rogers!

Jay Bunting

Mayor of Rogers

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GOP candidates should participate in public forums http://pressnews.com/2014/10/24/gop-candidates-should-participate-in-public-forums-2/ http://pressnews.com/2014/10/24/gop-candidates-should-participate-in-public-forums-2/#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 17:58:15 +0000 http://pressnews.com/?p=132158 To the Editor: 

It is a great disappointment that our local GOP candidates (now elected Minnesota House representatives) refuse to participate in public candidate forums. This demonstrates a great disrespect for the voters in this district.

Both Rep. Cindy Pugh and Rep. Jerry Hertaus refused to participate in the League of Women Voters forums.

Historically, the LWV has sponsored nonpartisan candidate forums that represent the primary venue for public debates in our local elections; all questions are from the audience or public via notice. The LWV adheres to strict guidelines to ensure a nonpartisan event focused solely on voter access to candidates.

Last week, the forum for House District 33A was supposed to be conducted. Candidate Todd Mikkelson was present; Rep. Hertaus was not. The forum for 33B could not be scheduled because Rep. Pugh refused the invitation; candidate Paul Alegi accepted.

Voters deserve to hear candidate’s positions in an open forum. This is a rich tradition in American politics. The people of this district deserve more. Too bad these GOP candidates have so little regard for this commitment to informing voters.

If a candidate is not willing to participate in a major public forum answering the same questions as their opponent at the same time, what business do they have in public office? Do these GOP candidates take for granted the voters in this district? Are they truly interested in representing all constituents in our district?

Before you vote, please take time to reach out to two candidates for Minnesota House — both successful small business owners with roots in this district. They are Todd Mikkelson (Mikkelsonforhouse.com) in 33A and Paul Alegi (PaulAlegi.com) in 33B.

Cathy Olson,

Minnetrista

Chair, Senate District 33 DFL

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Greenfield councilors deserve re-election http://pressnews.com/2014/10/24/greenfield-councilors-deserve-re-election/ http://pressnews.com/2014/10/24/greenfield-councilors-deserve-re-election/#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 17:56:33 +0000 http://pressnews.com/?p=132156 To the Editor:
The city of Greenfield has recently had very effective leadership.  A vote for Mayor Brad Johnson, and Councilmen Chuck Alcon and Tom Cook is well deserved.

Laurence Winter,

Greenfield

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No on Peyerl for STMA School Board http://pressnews.com/2014/10/24/no-on-peyerl-for-stma-school-board/ http://pressnews.com/2014/10/24/no-on-peyerl-for-stma-school-board/#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 17:55:32 +0000 http://pressnews.com/?p=132154 To the Editor:

At the recent forum, candidates were given the opportunity to talk about themselves and answer audience questions. Doug Birk (current chairman) spoke well to the significant fiscal challenges the district faces over the next four years STMA’s future is riding on the legislature more equitably altering the school funding formulas.

During the question and answer session, the candidates were asked what recommendations they would make if nothing changes in the current state funding formulas. Ms. Peyerl had said that she would support teachers, students and the equity issue but gave no specific recommendations towards a comprehensive STMA action plan. In fact, she stated “No Answer” to that specific question. That Ms. Peyerl either evaded answering the question or wasn’t knowledgeable about the fiscal concerns /possible actions and did so in front of community members — reflected very poorly on her willingness to represent the entire STMA area.

The challenges ahead for STMA require a strong and prepared group of leaders, willing to honestly and openly communicate with the entire community. Now is not the time to elect school board members who haven’t done their homework

Edward Smith

St. Michael

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Trendy & Thrifty Halloween Costumes Start at Goodwill http://pressnews.com/2014/10/24/trendy-thrifty-halloween-costumes-start-at-goodwill/ http://pressnews.com/2014/10/24/trendy-thrifty-halloween-costumes-start-at-goodwill/#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 15:30:20 +0000 http://pressnews.com/?p=131206 Download coupon for 50% off one item
– then head to your favorite Goodwill store and brew up an awesome costume for less.

Goodwill1-550x320

By Sarah Carlson
Editor, Real Housewives of Minnesota

Every year, I tell myself that I’m going to top last year’s Halloween costumes. I aim to be craftier, trendier – and most importantly, thriftier. For all the above, the easy solution is Goodwill. I find some awesome costumes there year after year, without breaking the bank. But what kinds of things will I be on the lookout for this year? I did a little research and then headed to my local Goodwill to work my magic. Here’s what you need to know.

Sarah-RHofMN

More Halloween Parties This Year

Halloween is on Friday this year. So, you can definitely expect to be invited to more Halloween parties, which also means you’ll be costume hunting for adults! It’s best to think ahead about costume ideas, because you don’t want to wait until the last minute and end up dressing as a zombie bride, again…

Goodwill-halloween2014
Costume and Party Trends

What’s is on trend this year? Glad you asked! Experts say this is the year for masquerades, which you can easily prepare for with masks, beautiful gowns, and stunning updos. Also expect to see lots of characters from Frozen, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Game of Thrones and other popular movies and TV shows. Don’t forget superheroes: Captain America, Iron Man, Superman, Spiderman, Batman – the list goes on and on. Clever, timely costumes like Grumpy Cat and Ice Bucket Challenge are always fresh, too.

When in doubt, a trendy celebrity is always fun and easy to mimic. Just flip through your latest copy of People magazine for some clever ideas, and then go on a thrift hunt for pieces that tie it all together!

Walking through Goodwill, I found several great ideas. We’re talking masks, wigs, face paint, and accessories along with versatile basics like suits, dresses, flannel shirts and solid color separates that work in countless costumes.

I decided on Theresa Caputo from the popular TV show, Long Island Medium. It was easy – I just had to thrift for high heels, tight dress and some long fake fingernails. From there the rest was easy; high hair and a fake tan! Spirits are telling me it’s going to be a hit this Halloween!

Tutorials, Lists & Sweepstakes – Oh My!

If you’re ever short on ideas, or if you need a little extra help, the Goodwill website is a great resource. It has dozens of costume images with shopping lists; makeup tutorials for witch, zombie and vampire faces; and even some fun nail art ideas for fans of the Goodwill  Halloween TV commercial. You can even enter to win a $500 VISA cash card in the annual Goodwill Halloween sweepstakes.

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Treatment for Lake Independence zebra mussels progresses http://pressnews.com/2014/10/23/treatment-for-lake-independence-zebra-mussels-progresses/ http://pressnews.com/2014/10/23/treatment-for-lake-independence-zebra-mussels-progresses/#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 20:09:19 +0000 http://pressnews.com/?p=131988 Blue green algae bloom reported in Mooney Lake

Two area lakes, Lake Independence and Mooney Lake, have encountered problems with aquatic invasive species, and weather has complicated the two scenarios.

After an initial battle with high winds and high wave action, Three Rivers Park District is making progress in treatment of Lake Independence for an infestation of zebra mussels, according to Richard Brasch, of the Three Rivers Park District.

And the Mooney Lake Association recently discovered a blue green algae bloom in Mooney Lake, which is located in Medina, Plymouth and Orono. Peter Rechelbacher, of the lake association, said the algae bloom resulted in a “very minor fish kill” of bullheads and small crappies. Lake monitors could not determine whether the algae bloom was toxic. They did discover low dissolved oxygen levels due to temperature changes.

LAKE INDEPENDENCE

At Lake Independence in Medina, the park district closed the boat landing at Baker Park on Oct. 6 in order to begin zebra mussel treatment of a 50-feet-by-50-feet area with a chelated copper solution. A containment curtain was erected to confine the chemical to this small area. Then weather got in the way of treatment.

“The treatment earlier this week did not generate the results we wanted in the immediate boat access area,” Brasch reported in an Oct. 10 email. “It appears that high winds and large waves prevented the containment curtain from working like we’d hoped to keep the product concentrated in the boat access area.” Waves washed over the curtain and diluted the copper solution.

Before treatment began, Three Rivers found more zebra mussels in deeper water outside of the containment area. The park district needed to order a taller containment curtain in order to treat the expanded area.

Brasch emailed on Friday, Oct. 17, to report that the taller containment curtain has arrived and now is in place. Treatment of the area between the inner and outer curtain took place on Oct. 15.

“As of today (48 hours after treatment) copper concentrations in the treated area are holding up much better than the first time around,” Brasch said, “with concentrations well above the threshold identified by the product manufacturer needed to kill zebra mussels after a 96-hour exposure.”

He continued, “We have been and will continue to monitor both copper concentrations and zebra mussel mortality daily throughout the weekend and into next week.”

The next treatment of the inner area was scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 22, Brasch said. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has been working to obtain a “special local needs” variance for the chelated copper product that would be specific to both Lake Independence and Christmas Lake, in which zebra mussels also have been found.

“This would allow us to treat much more frequently than the current label (specifies) if needed,” Brasch said. There is a chance that the variance could come through by midweek during the week of Oct. 20. If it does, Three Rivers could re-treat the outer containment area as well if necessary.

The DNR is asking owners of boats, boat lifts, docks and all water related equipment to inspect them for zebra mussels after removing them from the water at the end of the season. State law requires this type of equipment to remain out of the water for 21 days before being placed in another body of water.

Immediately report any suspected zebra mussel discoveries to Keegan Lund at the DNR, 651-259-5828.

Contact Susan Van Cleaf at susan.vancleaf@ecm-inc.com

 

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Rockford council projects progress http://pressnews.com/2014/10/23/rockford-council-projects-progress/ http://pressnews.com/2014/10/23/rockford-council-projects-progress/#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 20:06:25 +0000 http://pressnews.com/?p=131984 At the most recent Rockford City Council meeting, the council received an update concerning the Rockford Mall facade, approved a fund transfer, discussed a temporary rental space within the Rockford Mall, and heard an update concerning the Stork House grant.

MALL FACADE

The architect for the Rockford City Center Mall renovation, Tim O’Brien, spoke to the council about the next step in the mall facade project.

O’Brien showed the council three different shades of grey stucco material that will be used on the exterior of the building and will accentuate the stone paneling.

The suggested colors were an antique grey that will reside above the stone paneling, a darker grey that will be the color for the trim above the antique grey, and a grey called autumn brown which will be part of the cement panels.

O’Brien mentioned that he sees these colors “kind of as a background to offset the visual interests of the stone.”

The council agreed with his decisions, and these three colors will be what decorates the outside of the mall, along with the stones.

FUND TRANSFER

The council also listened to Jennifer Swendsen speak about a fund transfer from the city of Rockford’s fund 313 to fund 416. This transfer will help fund the construction activity at Riverside Park.

“The city applied and was awarded a grant from the DNR in the amount of $60,400. This grant is to be used to partially fund the demolition and reconstruction of the Lions building. As a requirement of the grant, the city has agreed to match the DNR grant amount of $60,400. The Picnic Shelter Committee identified city funds that could be available as matching dollars of the DNR grant. It was determined funds would be available in fund 313, which is the 2004 APIR refunding bond. The surplus of the funds in this fund as of Sept. 30 of this year is in the amount of approximately $200,000,” said Swendsen.

In other words, the Riverside Park project will be paid for by the grant the city received from the Department of Natural Resources, and the fund 313 transfer of $60,400. The city is allowed to move money from fund 313 to fund 416.

“Use of the surplus money in fund 313 is in compliance with the bond documents and the Minnesota State Statutes stating that any surplus remaining in the debt service fund, 313, when the obligations and interest thereon are paid it may be appropriated to any other general purpose by the municipality,” said Swendsen.

This transfer is beneficial for the city, because the funds for this project are already in the system and are ready to use for the Riverside Park project.

The council approved this fund transfer.

OTHER

In other news, City Administrator Dan Madsen brought to the council’s attention that the city has restored a room in the Rockford City Center Mall. This area can be used to set up a rental space for small groups of people since the city’s other rental space, the Lions building, is no longer available for use.

The council has varying opinions on how to handle rent for this mall space. In the end, the council members decided to send Administrator Madsen their ideas so he could put together some plans on how to deal with rent. The council will revisit this situation at a later date.

Other good news for the city of Rockford comes in the form of a grant that the Stork House received to update their heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning systems. The council expressed their pleasure with this update, and the project is anticipated to hopefully begin by the middle of November, depending on how quickly the necessary paperwork is taken care of.

Also, Mayor Renee Hafften made an announcement about Manufacturer’s Week. The manufacturers in Rockford have been quite beneficial to the residents of the city.

“In 2014, eleven manufacturers in Rockford provided 183 local jobs. In 2013, Rockford manufacturers provided $7,675,318 in annual wages,” said Mayor Hafften.

Mayor Hafften reminded everyone that Manufacturer’s Week in the city of Rockford is from Oct. 19 through Oct. 25.

The next Rockford City Council meeting will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 28 at 6:00 p.m. at City Hall, 6031 Main Street.

Contact Alyssa Krekelberg at alyssa.krekelberg@ecm-inc.com

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GOP candidates should participate in public forums http://pressnews.com/2014/10/23/gop-candidates-should-participate-in-public-forums/ http://pressnews.com/2014/10/23/gop-candidates-should-participate-in-public-forums/#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 20:01:13 +0000 http://pressnews.com/?p=131972 To the Editor:

It is a great disappointment that our local GOP candidates (now elected Minnesota House representatives) refuse to participate in public candidate forums. This demonstrates a great disrespect for the voters in this district.

Both Rep. Cindy Pugh and Rep. Jerry Hertaus refused to participate in the League of Women Voters forums.

Historically, the LWV has sponsored nonpartisan candidate forums that represent the primary venue for public debates in our local elections; all questions are from the audience or public via notice. The LWV adheres to strict guidelines to ensure a nonpartisan event focused solely on voter access to candidates.

Last week, the forum for House District 33A was supposed to be conducted. Candidate Todd Mikkelson was present; Rep. Hertaus was not. The forum for 33B could not be scheduled because Rep. Pugh refused the invitation; candidate Paul Alegi accepted.

Voters deserve to hear candidate’s positions in an open forum. This is a rich tradition in American politics. The people of this district deserve more. Too bad these GOP candidates have so little regard for this commitment to informing voters.

If a candidate is not willing to participate in a major public forum answering the same questions as their opponent at the same time, what business do they have in public office? Do these GOP candidates take for granted the voters in this district? Are they truly interested in representing all constituents in our district?

Before you vote, please take time to reach out to two candidates for Minnesota House — both successful small business owners with roots in this district. They are Todd Mikkelson (Mikkelsonforhouse.com) in 33A and Paul Alegi (PaulAlegi.com) in 33B.

Cathy Olson,

Minnetrista

Chair, Senate District 33 DFL

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Rockford football ends regular season at 3-5 and No. 6 section seed http://pressnews.com/2014/10/23/rockford-football-ends-regular-season-at-3-5-and-no-6-section-seed/ http://pressnews.com/2014/10/23/rockford-football-ends-regular-season-at-3-5-and-no-6-section-seed/#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 19:53:47 +0000 http://pressnews.com/?p=131955 Jeremy Bingham led Rockford in pass receiving with 26 catches for 482 yards and five touchdowns this season. (Photo by Bill Nord)

Jeremy Bingham led Rockford in pass receiving with 26 catches for 482 yards and five touchdowns this season. (Photo by Bill Nord)

BY DAVE PEDERSEN

CROW RIVER NEWS

A 20-6 loss to Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted last week contributed to Rockford earning the No. 6 seed in the Class 3A, Section 2 football playoffs.

They tournament started play Tuesday, Oct. 21 after this issue went to press. Rockford was matched against No. 3 seed Glencoe-Silver Lake. The Rockets finished the regular season at 3-5 while the Panthers went 3-5.

The winner will take on No. 2 seed Watertown-Mayer, 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 25. The section title game is 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 31.

“We made the road more difficult in the playoffs this year, but this is the time when our football program starts playing its best,” said coach Dan Houghton. “We just need to get back to playing fundamental football going into the playoffs so we can make a run.”

Rockford comes into the playoffs in a similar spot to the last three seasons when the team has won all of the first round games. In the second round the Rockets lost two close games and upset No. 1 DeLaSalle despite having a losing record.

Houghton says playing in such a tough conference gets his players ready and confident for the playoffs. Rockford finished the season tied for fourth in the Central Minnesota Conference, the highest league finish since 2007 when Rockford advanced to the state tournament.

The game against HLWW was closer than the score suggests. Rockford trailed 6-0 entering the fourth quarter. HLWW led 6-0 at the half and 14-6 late before scoring to put the game away.

“We weren’t clicking on offense and didn’t make enough plays to win this game,” said Houghton. “The series has been a tight one for last 10 years with only three games being decided by more than one touchdown. The Rockets were on the winning end the last three years.”

The ball went back and forth early with both teams turning it over via interceptions. Tommy Reinking did the honors for Rockford.

The Lakers scored the only points of the first half with a 4-yard run. Cornerback Jeremy Bingham had an interception with a long return at the end of the half.

To start the second half Rockford had a 10-play drive and stalled out. At the start of the fourth quarter HLWW scored on a 17-yard run to grab a 14-0 lead.

Rockford kept plugging away, driving 86 yards on 11 plays, capped off by quarterback Jake Clouse’s 23-yard touchdown pass to Bingham.

With under two minutes to play, the Lakers finished a 76-yard, 12-play drive with a 11-yard touchdown run to ice the win.

Clouse was 9 of 25 passing for 66 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Reinking had 14 carries for 62 yards. Jimmy Monssen had seven rushes for 31 yards. Bingham had four receptions for 62 yards and one touchdown.

Linebacker Nick Selly led all tacklers with 15. Clouse added 12 tackles, while linebackers Kane Vogel and Alex Byers each had nine.

For the season, Clouse topped the charts with 97 total tackles, nine for loss. He was followed by Selly (87), Vogel (46), Beyers (45) and Andrew VanDehey (43).

On offense Clouse was 57 for 128 passing for 912 yards. Reinking rushed 109 times for 500 yards. Clouse gained 206 yards on 72 carries and Monssen rushed 43 times for 232 yards.

 

 

 

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