Dan Gunderson MPR News 91.3 FM MOORHEAD — Automatic federal budget cuts ordered this spring were problematic in parts of Minnesota. On the White Earth reservation, they were devastating. More than half of the White Earth tribal government budget, about $30 million, is federal funding. Reservation leaders are planning for a 5 percent budget cut this year and expecting a 9 percent cut next year if the cuts continue, Tribal Chairwoman Erma Vizenor said. "It is devastating to us and it’s not going to be for one or two years," she added.
By Martin Moylan MPR News 91.3 FM FALCON HEIGHTS — John Mancini runs one of the Twin Cities’ most popular restaurants. Still, it took him more than a decade to grab a vendor spot at the Minnesota State Fair. His wish came true this year after a space opened on Carnes Avenue. Mancini and his brother Pat have spent a lot — they won’t say how much — on stone work, stainless steel appliances and other renovations to bring Mancini’s Char House to the fairgrounds. Will they make money?
By Jennifer Vogel MPR News 91.3 FM MONTEVIDEO — Located at the confluence of the Minnesota and Chippewa Rivers in western Minnesota, Montevideo had been slowly losing population for decades. A town of 5,000, Montevideo is one of many built along railroad tracks that suffered as farms became larger and more mechanized and as television and cars presented options other than the theater and grocery store downtown.
Editor’s note: This is the second of four excerpts from "Fighting for an American countryside" by MPR News’ Ground Level project. You can download the free eBook, with video, photos and graphics, to your tablet or other reader from iBooks, Amazon or Barnes and Noble. You can also view it online at mprnews.org. Jennifer Vogel MPR News 91.3 FM LONG PRAIRIE — Verna Toenyan, who was raised in Eagle Bend in central Minnesota, organizes and advocates for seniors in Todd County, where nearly one in five residents are 65 or older.
Editor’s note: This is the first of four excerpts from "Fighting for an American countryside" an eBook by MPR News’ Ground Level project. You can download the free eBook, with video, photos and graphics, to your tablet or other reader from iBooks, Amazon or Barnes and Noble. You can also view it online at mprnews.org. By Jennifer Vogel MPR News 91.3 FM HEWITT — In Hewitt, a prairie town of 266 people almost exactly in the middle of Minnesota, moving forward looks a lot like stepping backward.
Dan Gunderson MPR News 91.3 FM WARROAD — Berry pickers heading to the Beltrami Island State Forest this summer might be surprised to find their favorite blueberry picking spot is off limits. The state forest in north central Minnesota between Bemidji and Warroad is a favorite of berry pickers and hunters.
Tom Scheck MPR News 91.3 FM ST. PAUL — In 2008, Al Franken beat incumbent Republican Sen. Norm Coleman by 312 votes — a margin so slim that pundits predicted a bruising re-election fight for Franken even before the recount was done. Five years later, as Sen. Franken’s re-election race nears, the only Republicans challenging him so far are a businessman with no political experience and a state lawmaker best known for bucking his party. Both those candidates, though, say their messages will resonate with Minnesotans. ABELER AIMS TO CHANGE WASHINGTON State Rep.
Tim Pugmire MPR News 91.3 FM ST. PAUL — A bipartisan group of state lawmakers aims to pass a law next year that would allow doctors to prescribe marijuana law to patients with debilitating ailments. Law enforcement groups oppose making marijuana legal. But state Rep.
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A chunk of state-owned land on the shores of Lake Superior has been sold for about $1 million and will benefit public schools. The 65-acre property includes nearly 1,700 feet of lakeshore near Silver Bay. It was sold to two individuals during a public auction Wednesday. State lawmakers last year approved the sale of lake land to boost funding for schools.
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Noxious weeds are proving an expensive and cumbersome adversary for Minnesota agricultural officials, who are ramping up eradication efforts of invasive plants that pose environmental or health worries.