Zach Kayser covers local government and city issues for the Pioneer. He previously worked for the Wadena Pioneer Journal, and is an alumni of the University of Minnesota, Morris.
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BEMIDJI -- Beltrami County marched to the beat of its own drummer on Election Day even as it went along with some statewide trends. The county opted for Gov. Mark Dayton and U.S. Sen. Al Franken by margins similar to the those in the state as whole. Dayton had about 51 percent of the vote in Beltrami County and 50 percent statewide, while GOP challenger Jeff Johnson had 42 percent in the county and 45 percent in the state.
BEMIDJI -- The race for House of Representatives District 2A covered familiar ground. Dave Hancock, R-Bemidji was in position to retake his House seat on Tuesday and defeat incumbent Roger Erickson, DFL-Baudette. Erickson won the seat from Hancock in 2012. At about 12:30 a.m., Hancock lead Erickson with 105 of 107 precincts reporting. Hancock had 52.45 percent to Erickson's 47.40 percent. The swing-area race has captured a relatively high degree of attention from the statewide political world.
BEMIDJI -- The 12th Annual Minnesota Governor's Deer Opener is in range, with a 12-point rack full of activities and events in Bemidji. Minnesota Deer Hunters Association interim Executive Director Dennis Quarberg said the annual Deer Opener is a bit like a holiday. "It's a celebration of the season that we look at as being our most favorite time of the year," he said. Although Quarberg acknowledged this hunting season would be a conservative harvest year with higher restrictions, he said it wouldn't dampen the mood at the opener celebration. "A sacrifice today makes prosperity tomorrow,"
BEMIDJI -- John Persell, DFL- Bemidji, 64, won re-election in District 5A on Tuesday, defeating challenger Phillip Nelson. With all 70 precincts reporting early Wednesday, Persell won with 55.13 percent of the vote, or 7,862 votes, while Nelson had to 44.77percent, or 6,38 votes. Nelson is new to politics, having been recruited by the Republicans for his first-ever race to try and take down Persell. Nelson, 33, who said he wasn't accepting any financial contributions for his campaign, was running on a three-point platform: campaign finance reform, job creation and tax reduction. "If you do want to donate to the Republican campaign for th
BEMIDJI -- Two men on the front lines of Minnesota's small business economy faced off in the House District 2B race. Incumbent Republican Steve Green, 54, of Fosston, held onto his seat Tuesday, topping DFL challenger David Sobieski, 48, of New York Mills. With all 87 precincts reporting, Green topped Sobieski 57.16 percent (8,335 votes) to 42.77 percent (6,236 votes). It's the second term for Green, who defeated Brita Sailer of Park Rapids for the seat in 2012.
BEMIDJI -- Mayor Rita Albrecht garnered a second term Tuesday, defeating challenger Jorge Prince. Albrecht won with 55.24 percent (2,267 votes) to Prince's 44.52 percent (1,827) with all five city wards reporting. "I'm very gratified by the results," she said.
BEMIDJI -- Local Republican and Democrat officials anxiously awaited returns at Election Night parties after the polls closed in Bemidji on Tuesday night. Republicans feted at the Hampton Inn and...
BEMIDJI -- A crowd of about 50 Republicans gathered at the Bemidji GOP Victory office Monday to see U.S. Congressional candidates Torrey Westrom and Stewart Mills campaign on the eve...
BEMIDJI -- About 50 Democrats braved chilly winds coming off Lake Bemidji on Saturday to see U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan, Lt. Gov. candidate Tina Smith and other DFL candidates give...
BEMIDJI -- A judge has dismissed the bulk of the second lawsuit over annexation of property from Bemidji Township to the city of Bemidji, according to court documents filed Tuesday. Judge Jana Austad dismissed all of Bemidji Township's claims against the city, Northern Township and the Greater Bemidji Area Joint Planning Board, except for a claim against the city seeking an explanation of how the city formulated tax redistribution numbers. In her decision, Austad said the claims in the second lawsuit were too similar to the claims in the initial annexation lawsuit, which is pending appeal.