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School Settles ACLU Lawsuit PDF Print E-mail
News - Pope County Tribune - Starbuck Times
Written by John R. Stone   
Friday, 29 November 2013 11:27
School, student settle on discipline lawsuit filed by the ACLU

Minnewaska Area Schools approved a settlement with a former student and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) over treatment rendered by the district following an incident a couple of years ago.
The individual, identified only by the initials R.S., had challenged the district’s treatment and discipline following an incident in which some postings had been made on a social media site. The lawsuit was filed in 2012.
According to a news release issued by the ACLU and printed in part on March 12, 2012 in the Pope County Tribune, R.S., then a sixth-grader, made a posting on Facebook about dislike of a school staff member. The school learned about the incident and gave the student detention and ordered the student to write an apology. Later the release said that R.S. had received in-school suspension and was barred from a school field trip after she cursed on her Facebook page about someone notifying the school of the previous Facebook posting.
The ACLU also alleged that the district did not inform R.S.’s mother of the search of her daughter’s property and that the student’s Fourth Amendment rights against unreasonable search and seizure were violated.
Greg Ohl, MAS superintendent at the time, was quoted in the March 12 article as saying that the district “did not violate R.S.’s rights and disputes the one-sided version of events set forth in the complaint written by the ACLU.”           
“The district stands behind the decisions made by staff and the policies that exist to ensure school is a safe and welcoming place for all students and staff,” the district’s statement at the time continued. “Any viewing of R.S.’s Facebook account was done with the express consent of her parent.”
HRA/EDA Sets Final Levy PDF Print E-mail
News - Pope County Tribune - Starbuck Times
Written by Zach Anderson - Starbuck Times New Editor   
Friday, 29 November 2013 11:24
HRA/EDA sets final levy of $275,000

The Pope County HRA/EDA Board approved changing its final 2014 budget levy from $300,000 to $275,000 at its meeting on November 20.
After discussion the board felt they could lower the levy a bit. They said if they do a big push on the hotel project in Starbuck they don’t want to be short on money.
“If we get into bigger projects we will need some up front money,” HRA/EDA Executive Director Dick Dreher said.
Dreher said he was talking to three groups (two in Minneapolis and one in Alexandria) currently about interest in being the investment group for the hotel. Dreher said in the next couple months he will make a major push to find an investment group.
TreeOof Life Brightens Memories PDF Print E-mail
News - Pope County Tribune - Starbuck Times
Written by Debra Mathias - GHES Administrator   
Friday, 29 November 2013 11:20
Tree of Life brightens the season with memories

Nearly 150 loved ones who have passed away were remembered at the annual Glacial Ridge Hospice Tree of Life ceremony held Tuesday evening at Ridgewood Villa in Glenwood.
The Tree of Life has roots in the community reaching back almost 25 years. The annual event, offering a time and place to honor and remember loved ones, evolved from two Glacial Ridge Hospice programs.
One of the programs was the Remembrance Tree—a large, lighted Christmas tree in front of Glacial Ridge Hospital. Those remembered with a $5 donation to Hospice were represented with the lights and their names were posted on a wooden Christmas tree cutout in the hospital lobby. That tree eventually became known as the “Tree of Lights.”
Another Hospice program, the annual candle lighting memorial service, was held each fall or spring.
Kruger Farms Receives Business Award PDF Print E-mail
News - Pope County Tribune - Starbuck Times
Written by Zach Anderson - Starbuck Times New Editor   
Wednesday, 30 October 2013 08:26
Starbuck’s Kruger Farms receives business award

Kruger Farms of Starbuck was honored last Wednesday as the recipient of the annual award presented during the Pope County Salute to Business and Industry luncheon at the Minnewaska House. The annual event has been honoring Pope County businesses since 1994. Don Nelson (front left) and Russ Barkeim (front right) of Kruger Farms were presented with a plaque from a number of Pope County organizations. From left, behind Nelson and Barkeim are Jennifer Haugen, Starbuck Chamber of Commerce; Bill Ogdahl, Glenwood mayor; Jim Thoreen, Pope County coordinator, representing the Pope County commissioners and the HRA/EDA; Bruce Bakewell, Starbuck mayor; Lance Bailey, the Klick Foundation; Jim Morrissey, the Glenwood Development Corporation; and Greg Vold, president of the Glenwood Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce.
Don Nelson of Kruger Farms was the featured speaker at the event, talking about how the company started and some of its successful marketing techniques.  What started as online sales in 2007, Kruger Farms saw quick growth. In 2010, Nelson hired the first full-time employee to ship overstocked items stored at the Starbuck location. Then, in 2011, the company took a big step for the Kruger Farms location in Starbuck, when a new 6,000-square-foot warehouse was added and all the St. Paul warehouse merchandise was moved to Starbuck. In the past year, the Starbuck showroom has been expanded from 1,600 square feet to 7,100 square feet. Russ Barkeim is the on-site manager at the Starbuck location. He said Kruger Farms now has four full-time and four part-time employees at the Starbuck location.
MAHS Board Bembers To Use MS tablets PDF Print E-mail
News - Pope County Tribune - Starbuck Times
Written by John R. Stone   
Wednesday, 30 October 2013 08:21
MAHS board members begin using MS tablets

Members of the Minnewaska Area Schools Board of Education came to last week’s regular board meeting early to get training on Microsoft Surface tablets.
Board members were trained in the operation of the tablets by Steve Sampson of the district’s information technology staff.
Superintendent Greg Schmidt had told board members late last summer that he hoped to have the tablets replace board packets of paper sent to each board member prior to the regular meeting each month. The paper would be replaced by electronic documents the board members would receive via email.
Hammer Breakfast to be held November 5 PDF Print E-mail
News - Pope County Tribune - Starbuck Times
Written by Zach Anderson - Starbuck Times New Editor   
Wednesday, 30 October 2013 08:18
Annual Habitat for Humanity Hammer Breakfast to be held November 5

One dollar and one volunteer at a time, the annual Hammer Breakfast helps fund the work of Habitat for Humanity of Prairie Lakes. The breakfast is one of Habitat’s major fundraisers of the year—not only financially, but in spreading the word about the need for volunteers.
The breakfast also provides a chance for Habitat’s Pope County chapter to update the public on its work in the community. Ron Cin, board president of HfH of Prairie Lakes, said the organization most recently built homes in Cyrus and Starbuck, with plans to raise another roof in Lowry this spring. “One misconception is that families are given these homes for free,” said Cin. He explained that families must apply and go through a screening process, and prove they have adequate income to support a mortgage payment “just like everyone else,” said Cin. Families are also required to put 300 “sweat equity” hours into their new home.
The Hammer Breakfast will be held at 6:30 a.m. Nov. 5 at Lakeside Ballroom in Glenwood. Serving will begin at 6:30 a.m. with a program to follow at 7 a.m. that will end promptly at 8 a.m.
The featured speaker at this year’s Hammer Breakfast is Jan Arneson, founder of Pope County Families in Need and the 2012 Ann Bickle Heritage House Volunteer of the Year.
Arneson started down the path of volunteerism in 1959 in Minneapolis as part of a college class she was taking at the time. She worked at the Cedar Avenue Settlement House and at the Wilder Nursery—places and experiences that impacted the course of her future.
Notes From The Capital PDF Print E-mail
News - State Legislators Comments
Written by Paul Anderson - State House Representative 12A   
Tuesday, 15 October 2013 08:40
Monday, Oct. 14, 2013

paul_anderson_150The committee in the Minnesota House that has control over the agriculture budget held a hearing Oct. 7  to focus on a recent Pollution Control  Agency report concern nitrogen loading in the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers.  I told the committee that since October is a very busy time on Minnesota farms with harvest activity in full swing, it may be difficult for ag interests to break away from fall harvest to testify in St. Paul.  It seems to me that nearly any other time of the year would be better to conduct a hearing where the primary focus would be on farming practices.

Committee members were given a summary of the study, and a 60-day comment period was also initiated.  Public review and comment will be accepted until Dec. 18, after which the recommendations contained in the report may be altered before finalization.  The report will then serve as a guide for the reduction of nutrients in waters throughout the state.
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