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Et Cetera …

County ready to lobby

Martin County commissioners this week agreed to pay $20,000 to a lobbyist to aid the county securing a $20 million grant from the state of Minnesota to help pay for the cost of a new justice center/jail. The $20 million would cover about half of the cost of the new facility.

We believe commissioners are doing the right thing. The existing jail is deficient in many respects. The state says so.

It is also true that county residents pay their fair share of taxes to the state. They should expect state help when facing such a massive cost.

State failing some kids

Former Minnesota Supreme Court Justice Alan Page and Minneapolis Federal Reserve chairman Neel Kashkari visited Fairmont this week to tout an amendment to the state constitution that would seek to ensure quality education throughout Minnesota. We believe the pair made a strong case that the permanence of the amendment will pressure lawmakers to take actions needed to improve educational outcomes.

As things stand now, low-income white children, children of color and American Indian children are often left behind in terms of education. The state is failing them.

Hagedorn faces battle

We extend our thoughts and prayers to Congressman Jim Hagedorn, his family and friends in wake of the news that Hagedorn is battling stage four kidney cancer. He has been being treated by Mayo since Feb. 15, 2019.

Hagedorn says he actually feels “great” and plans to continue his campaign for re-election, as well as to continue working in Congress for southern Minnesotans.

Hagedorn has served his district well, and has been honest with constituents about his political positions, never pretending to be something he is not. We wish him well as he moves forward.

Students tackle history

When people know and understand history, they gain a perspective that can be invaluable. They learn from the mistakes of history, they recognize the successes, and they can relate the past to the present, which can actually make current but sometimes chaotic events make sense.

We extend kudos then to Fairmont Area Schools, which will participate in National History Day on Monday. It is a project-based contest for students in grades 6-12, with Fairmont seventh- and eighth-graders participating.

We encourage the public to visit the students’ exhibits from 4:30-8:30 p.m. Monday in the high school commons.

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