Opinion

How do we increase healthy, fresh foods in rural America? One way is to identify new opportunities for people to access food. Here are five suggestions for your community. o Mobile grocery stores or veggie vans are refrigerated vans or trucks that bring affordable produce into communities at a...
It was an exhilarating meeting to hear about all the ideas for the Batcher Block Building and to hear all the suggestions from people in the crowd. They are considering many possibilities from arts and entertainment, food, drink and retail. And they’re looking for local input so it has local ...
A new report from the Center for Rural Policy & Development, titled “CRPD hears from child care providers,” discusses the results of a recent statewide survey looking to better understand what issues for providers may be leading to the state’s current child care shortage. This preliminary...
My son Dustin had unforgettable, fiery red hair and a huge, goofy grin. He loved to make people laugh. One summer night shortly after graduating high school, Dustin got a ride with a 19-year-old driver who had alcohol and drugs in her system. Seat-belted and sober, Dustin was riding in the back...
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. This month and throughout the year, Todd County Health and Human Services encourages all individuals and organizations to play a role in making Todd County a better place for children and families. By ensuring that parents have the knowledge, skills,...
The Center for Rural Policy and Development has released its latest project, a compilation of insights and recommendations titled “Letters to the New Governor.” The “letters” are a set of essays offering guidance and insight to elected representatives in all offices, but in particular to Minnesota’...
Community pride   What does it mean to be a community?  One particular definition I found of community is “a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests and goals”. So, as I reflect on what makes the Staples-Motley (SM) Community so very special, what comes...
Central Minnesotans feel the region has made significant improvements in the past three years in areas such as economic development, maintaining and growing job opportunities that pay a living wage, according to the Rural Pulse 2019 survey of more than 1,560 Minnesotans just released by the Blandin...
On Wednesday, Governor Walz delivered his first State of the State address. I appreciated the tone of his speech. It is a good sign as we head toward end of session negotiations. We have a responsibility to pass a balanced budget on time and that is what Minnesotans expect of us. It is my hope that...
One of the challenges policymakers are facing is how to make political conversation more focused on solving problems. Arthur Brooks,  a longtime writer and head of the American Enterprise Institute, has some ideas that are worth considering.  Brooks recently wrote a book titled, “Love Your Enemies...

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