Matthew Liedke is the city, county and state government reporter for the Bemidji Pioneer. He also covers business, politics and financial news.
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BEMIDJI -- Redistricting in Minnesota and across the country won’t take place until after the 2020 census. However, a group in Bemidji is holding a forum reminding residents that they should be informed and educated on redistricting right now. Indivisible Bemidji has launched a new redistricting committee to advocate for fair elections and to oppose the concept of gerrymandering.
BEMIDJI -- A common topic Democratic-Farmer-Labor candidate Joe Radinovich hears on the campaign trail is a concern over health care.
BEMIDJI -- The Bemidji City Council on Monday unanimously approved the continuation of a partnership with Northern Township for planning and zoning duties. The Greater Bemidji Area Joint Planning Board, a unit made of both the city and Northern Township, is set to expire as an entity at the end of 2019. As part of the original agreement to create the JPB, the city is required to inform Northern Township of its intention by the end of this year.
BEMIDJI -- Construction on one of Bemidji’s oldest buildings is underway. Crews have started the renovation project on the 109-year-old Carnegie Library building on Bemidji Avenue North, with construction taking place both inside and out. Structurally, the building’s exterior and interior will be restored. Additionally, the plumbing, windows and HVAC systems will all be improved.
The first signs of award season are usually not the ceremonies selecting their nominations, but rather the actual films coming out in fall. While most contenders have releases in theaters from November through January, there are a few that make their way into cinemas during October, and thanks to the film festival circuit, some even have momentum.
BEMIDJI—The stretch of Anne Street Northwest between U.S. Highway 71 and Irvine Avenue has always served as Bemidji's health hub. Past, present and future investments in a variety of care have turned the corridor into a large medical center for the region. And that shows no signs of slowing down. The most recent example is the Joe Lueken Cancer Center. Opening this month, the $12 million, 20,500 square-foot addition to the Sanford Health Main Clinic brings all of the provider's cancer related services under one roof.
BEMIDJI -- Health care providers and advocates gathered Thursday in Bemidji to discuss how best to respond to the opioid crisis that takes hundreds of Minnesota lives each year. The summit is the brainchild of Northern Access, a coalition of local chemical and mental health programs that has been meeting regularly for five years. The need for the summit, they said, was to help craft a common response strategy among various organizations.
BEMIDJI—Federal officials will vacate the four-floor building in downtown Bemidji, with the intention of relocating the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Indian Health Service to another area of the city. The roughly 50,000 square-foot building, constructed in 1960, has been under the management of the General Services Administration since 1974. Bemidji City Manager Nate Mathews said in the past year and a half, he's been in communication with GSA officials, who've said they're looking to remove the building from their inventory.
BEMIDJI—A recent Minnesota Public Radio News/Minneapolis Star Tribune poll shows Democratic Congressman Keith Ellison holding only a five-point advantage over Republican Doug Wardlow in the race for state attorney general. However, Ellison maintains that the only poll he's concerned with is the one taken Nov. 6, Election Day. "We're not putting too much weight on it, because we know that it's about getting the vote out on Nov. 6," Ellison told the Pioneer in a visit to Bemidji on Wednesday. "We're encouraging everyone to get out to early vote, too."
BEMIDJI—With rising costs and a revenue stream ending, the Beltrami County Board of Commissioners voted Tuesday to pass a preliminary tax levy increase of 4.48 percent and a budget that will impact staffing levels. The impacts from county staffing was the main topic at Tuesday's meeting as County Administrator Kay Mack informed the board about staff reductions, promotions and hires.