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Et Cetera …

Cancer Center opening

We congratulate Mayo Clinic Health System in Fairmont for its completion of the new Lutz Cancer Center, which opens Monday. The $1.7 million project doubles the size of the existing cancer treatment space at the hospital.

Further congratulations are in order to the community of Fairmont for this new facility and the services it will provide.

Patients and their families will appreciate the center for all it offers, as they contend with trying times in their lives. We wish all of them the very best in their treatments and recoveries.

Fair always amazes

The Martin County Fair is always a hit with area residents, for all it offers and for reuniting all those people. We extend kudos to organizers and volunteers for bringing this excellent event to the public every year.

A fair has so many great aspects, from returning all of us to the basic lessons about the necessities of agriculture, to creating childhood memories of a family outing, to letting friends and neighbors share a joyful experience.

Martin County is blessed to have such a great fair. We know countless people truly appreciate it.

Trying to boost housing

Fairmont’s Economic Development Authority this week voted unanimously to recommend a tax abatement program for multi-family housing locally. This is a good step toward trying to create more housing in town and alleviate an issue that affects economic growth.

Without sufficient housing, workers cannot live here, so businesses will note the problem when considering coming here. (A child care shortage is a similar problem.)

Tax abatement is a tax incentive program that would help developers put up housing. It’s definitely worth a try.

Are they needed or not?

Should the state of Minnesota pay farmers for requiring them to take land out of production and use it instead as “buffers” to protect waterways from fertlizers and other chemical runoff? The question has arisen among farm groups and lawmakers.

Well, is the buffer requirement meant to address a real problem or not? Because if polluted waterways are a real threat to nature, including humans, then the mandate is more important than other considerations. If the problem is real, then the buffer zones never should have been farmed in the first place.

Does there need to be a new debate about the buffers themselves or not?

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