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Articles from the October 5, 2016 edition

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 By MSBA staff    Politics    October 5, 2016

Reminders: Time off to vote and prohibitions

As a reminder, per Minnesota Statute 204C.04, “every employee who is eligible to vote in an election has the right to be absent from work for the necessary time to appear at the employee’s polling place, cast a ballot, and return to work on the day of that election, without penalty or deduction from salary or wages because of the absence.” Therefore, employees may take...

 

National Education Association aims to tie bullying to Trump

The National Education Association, which has endorsed Hillary Clinton, announced a six-figure digital ad and mail campaign attempting to tie bullying and fear in the classroom to the Republican nominee. The NEA is pointing to a Southern Poverty Law Center report that found that the presidential election "is producing an alarming level of fear and anxiety among children of...

 

Family classes tied to better school performance for poor kids

(Reuters Health) - Children in low-income families who get extra help building social skills before kindergarten may behave better and get higher grades than their peers, a small study suggests. Researchers focused on kids that are traditionally at high risk for mental health problems and academic underachievement – low-income minority children attending high-poverty urban...

 

Hurricane Matthew: Travel insurance no longer available, call volume up

As Hurricane Matthew makes its way through the Caribbean, travelers are preparing for its potential impact. Travel insurance comparison site InsureMyTrip reports a 20 percent jump today in calls from travelers. Licensed travel insurance agents say travelers are seeking the following: • Information on how to cancel an upcoming trip • Clarification on how travel insurance...

 

Minnesota schools and childcare centers to host Farm to School tours

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Governor Mark Dayton has declared October “Farm to School Month” in Minnesota. To celebrate, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) will visit a dozen schools and childcare centers throughout the state that have received and implemented MDA Farm to School AGRI Grant funds. These grants help schools purchase equipment that will enable them to...

 

October 21 is the American Indian Cancer Foundation's 2 Annual Indigenous Pink Day.

MINNEAPOLIS - Indigenous Pink Day, on Friday October 21 , is a national breast cancer awareness campaign for American Indians/Alaska Natives. The AMERICAN INDIAN CANCER FOUNDATION asks men and women of all ages to wear pink and share photos on social media using the hashtag #IndigenousPink to spread breast cancer awareness. Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer...

 

"It's just one meeting a month" - preparing school board candidates for the real commitment

How many school board members have been told “It’s just one meeting a month” when asked to run for the school board? Anyone who works closely with the school board knows that doing the job well as a school board member is more than the “one meeting a month” commitment. The commitment to be a school board member involves not only the individual, but also his/her...

 

Metro Transit bus crashes at 12th and Harmon in downtown Minneapolis

A Metro Transit bus has crashed at 12th Street and Harmon Place, according to scanner reports. Several ambulances have been dispatched to the scene and the area around 12th and Hennepin has been blocked off. There are reports of multiple injuries. http://www.startribune.com/metro-transit-bus-crashes-at-12th-and-harmon-in-downtown-minneapolis/395986471/...

 

Florida closes schools, orders evacuations as Matthew nears

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Florida canceled classes along its Atlantic coastline and theme parks kept a watchful eye as Hurricane Matthew picked up speed heading to the East Coast. Officials in central Florida's Brevard County are ordering residents on barrier islands and in flood-prone areas to evacuate Wednesday in advance of the powerful hurricane. Residents who live in...

 

Vandalism of pro-Trump mural offers free-speech lesson at University of Minnesota

A painting depicting one of Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign slogans — “Build the Wall” — and a symbolic brick wall have created a firestorm on the University of Minnesota campus, offering students yet another lesson in freedom of speech. The mural by the Minnesota College Republicans — and its subsequent defacement — remained a frequent conversation topic Tuesday as...

 

Mystery lingers after man, woman found dead in SW Minnesota home

Two people were found dead in a southwestern Minnesota home, both with no visible wounds, and now authorities are hoping toxicology tests will unravel the mystery. Early Monday afternoon, the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call from a family member requesting that deputies check on the well-being of Brian A. Johnson Sr. at his home in Hendricks, just inside...

 

Medicare wastes billions on defective medical devices, audit finds

Medicare’s fiscal watchdog has documented $1.5 billion in spending on seven types of defective heart devices that doctors implanted in thousands of beneficiaries. In addition to the money Medicare paid to health care providers for services and procedures related to recalls or premature device failures, the patients who got the defective devices paid an estimated $140 million...

 

Twin Cities West Africans decry end to Ebola-era welcome

The news has roiled the Twin Cities’ West African community: A program that allowed natives of the countries hardest hit by the 2014 Ebola epidemic to stay and work here is ending next spring. In September, U.S. officials granted a final six-month reprieve to about 5,900 visitors from Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea here on Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and urged them to...

 

Trucking, oil industry groups lose challenge to Minnesota biodiesel mandate

A U.S. District Court judge in Minnesota has shot down an attempt by trucking, automotive and oil industry groups to abolish the state’s requirement that diesel sold at the pump contain at least 10 percent biofuel. The business groups, in a suit filed in April 2015, alleged that Minnesota’s biodiesel mandate conflicts with federal clean air and renewable fuel laws. They...

 

US trade deficit in August rises 3 percent to $40.7 billion

WASHINGTON — The U.S. trade deficit rose in August as a flood of imports offset the best showing for exports in 13 months. The politically sensitive deficit with China rose to the highest level in 11 months. The trade deficit increased 3 percent to $40.7 billion, up from a gap of $39.5 billion in July, the Commerce Department reported Wednesday. Imports jumped 1.2 percent to...

 

2 Mississippi police officers fired in child's death

ired after the death of a 3-year-old girl, who authorities say was left alone in a parked patrol car for four hours last week. Local media organizations report the Long Beach Board of Aldermen voted unanimously Tuesday night to terminate Officer Cassie Barker and Sgt. Clark Ladner. Chief Wayne McDowell recommended the immediate termination of the officers, who were also...

 

Sanders stumps for Clinton on friendly turf in Minnesota

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders tried Tuesday to leverage his popularity among Minnesota college students and DFLers on behalf of his former Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, while calling Republican Donald Trump “the worst candidate for president in the modern history of the United States.” Sanders’ message of political revolution found one of its most receptive audiences...

 

Two of three incumbents lose in Chukchansi council election

In a close vote, Dora Jones and Nokomis Hernandez, incumbent members of the Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians tribal council, were ousted in an election last weekend. Their replacements are Heather Airey and Patrick Hammond, two of 20 members who challenged for three spots on the council. Incumbent Tom Walker, tribal secretary, retained his seat. http...

 

Denver just became the latest city to recognize Indigenous Peoples' Day instead of Columbus Day

The city of Denver announced on Monday that it will join fourteen other cities across the country in recognizing Indigenous Peoples’ Day every year on the day that would normally be celebrated as Columbus Day. “Our city owes our very founding to the indigenous peoples in Denver,” City Councilman Paul Lopez said after the vote on Monday night. “We do this because our...

 

The Dakota Access Pipeline: Another Epic Clash Between America's Military-Corporate Powers and the Great Sioux Nation

As the eve of the 2016 US presidential election draws nearer, and the world inches ever-closer to the edge of their seats, wondering who the winner will be to lay claim to the world’s most powerful seat for committing acts of good or evil, there is yet another David & Goliath story unfolding. It’s yet one more spin on the same old story that has been told in America for...

 

Tribe Disputes State Archaeologist's Report

MORTON COUNTY, N.D. – The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe disputes the conclusions of state archaeologists who found that construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline did not destroy sacred sites, after the company refused to allow tribal participation in the survey. The Morton County Sheriff’s Department made several efforts to encourage the company to involve tribal...

 

Dakota Access Oil Pipeline Review Approaches Another Juncture

Labor unions on Monday alerted President Obama to what they consider to be a gross error by his administration in interfering last month with the construction of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access oil pipeline at a time when the courts are still sorting out lawsuits by the backers and opponents. On Wednesday oral arguments are to be heard in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the...

 

Oakland City Council Votes to Support Standing Rock Sioux Tribe's Opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline

I recently gathered with community activists in front of Oakland City Hall to express our solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, the environment, and all First Nation Peoples, and spoke up in defense of the water and the Native people’s rights in opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). The pipeline threatens the safety of area drinking water, as the...

 

Oil giant to donate land for $30-million Vancouver native youth centre

A representative from one of the world’s biggest oil producers will be at city hall Wednesday to announce the company will donate a former gas station site towards the construction of a long-awaited $30-million native youth centre planned for Commercial Drive and East Hastings. Details of Calgary-based Suncor Energy's involvement in the project will be released during a...

 

Obama asks judge to uphold cancellation of Montana energy lease

BILLINGS — The Obama administration wants a federal judge to uphold its decision to block oil and gas drilling on land considered sacred to some tribes in the U.S. and Canada, as industry groups warn the government’s move sets a precedent against energy development. Justice Department attorneys urged the judge in court documents filed Monday to reject a lawsuit that seeks...

 

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