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Farmers Independent
Bagley, Minnesota
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October 29, 2014     Farmers Independent
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October 29, 2014
 

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Wednesday, October 29, 2014 FARMERS INDEPENDENT, Bagley, Minnesota -- Page 15 Dayton/Continued from page 14 Education, higher Ed: Many employers continue to be frustrated in their ability to find qualified workers for the available jobs. What role does higher Ed play in addressing this problem? What can be done to better align our higher Ed course offerings with employer needs? We need to better align our higher education and workforce training systems with the expanding employment needs of Minnesota businesses. We need to retool our universities and colleges with programs that will educate and train workers which make huge differences to thousands of Minnesotans, who were previously denied health insurance because of their medical histories. All health care plans must cover doctor visits, maternity care, hospitalizations, and preventative care, such as blood pressure, cholesterol, and cancer screenings. As Governor, I will oppose critics, who want to abolish MNsure, put insurance companies back in charge of deciding what coverage to offer, and remove the Affordable Care Act's important consumer protections. I will continue to transportation network. I will work with the Legislature to consider all the ways we could afford to adequately maintain our state's highways, roads, bridges, and public transit systems, while continuing to look for new efficiencies that save taxpayers' money. Minnesota currently bans new nuclear energy and has a moratorium on greenhouse gas-emitting resources'. Should the expansion of nuclear and coal generation of electricity be included in Minnesota's energy portfolio? continues to show that far more people see the notices when they're published in newspapers and on newspaper websites, and that removing them from newspapers would in fact save very little money. What's your view on permitting important public notices to be disseminated only by local government bodies by means of their own websites? I strongly support requiring public notices to be published in newspapers and public websites. Open records: The City of St. Paul recently settled a civil lawsuit against the City for $800,000 (the third largest in city history). However, the settlement agreement includes a provision that prohibits city officials and employees from commenting about the settlement or the reasons it was entered into, especially to the news media. Would you support legislation prohibiting this kind of covenant in settlement agreements entered into by government agencies in Minnesota? Yes. Do you support moving the primary election from August to June in an effort to increase voter turnout? Yes. For the past 25 years, I have supported an early June primary. The middle of August is not a good time to engage Minnesota voters in political campaigns. Briefly summarize your personal background and qualifications. Presently, Governor of Minnesota; B.A., Yale University, cum laude; New York City public school teacher; Minnesota Commissioner of Energy and Economic Development; State Auditor; United States Senator; father of Eric and Andrew Dayton; grandfather; live in St. Paul with two German Shepherds, Itasca and Wanamingo. for the jobs of the future, rather than the past. This retooling will require new courses and curricula; new buildings, equipment, and technology; and closer working relationships between those programs and bt/sinesses across our state. In December, I will host a series of regional Economic Growth Summits to ask businesses what they need from their area's higher education institutions and job training programs. We will address those needs in the next legislative session. MNsure, the state's health care exchange, has come under heavy criticism since its creation. Is it serving its purpose? Do you advocate any changes, or should it remain as is? I have frequently said that the initial problems with MNsure were unacceptable. However, the health exchange has improved and will continue to get better. MNsure provides consumers with more comprehensive health care coverage, as required by. the Affordable Care Act. There are no disqualifications for pre-existing conditions, support improvements that will allow more Minnesotans access to good quality, affordable health care. Long-range forecasts should a significant gap in transportation needs - roads and transit. Do you support additional revenue? If so, what sources of revenue should be raised for what specific programs? The future of transportation in Minnesota and adequate funding for it must be one of the 2015 legislative session's top priorities. Whatever is decided - whether to do nothing, a little, or more - will have an enormous impact on the lives of all Minnesotans for decades. Transportation experts tell us that there is presently a $6 billion gap between expected state and federal revenues over the next 10 years and what we will need to spend, just to keep our roads, bridges, highways, and public transit from getting even worse. MnDOT Commissioner Charlie Zelle and I have outlined one possible combination of funds, which could pay for maintenance, repairs, and some improvements to our state's A healthy life starts with, and depends upon, clean air to breathe, clean water to drink, protected natural environments to enjoy, and a secure ecological future. They will all require us to build upon our progress in energy conservation and the use of non-polluting, renewable energy. These new sources of homegrown, renewable energy are not only good for the environment, but will also help boost our state's economy. We must continue to make renewable energy sources more efficient and cost-effective, as we substitute them for fossil- burning fuels. I would like to see Minnesota chart a path to the elimination of coal by power plants and other heavy industrial users. I support the current ban on new nuclear plants until the issue of how to safely store nuclear waste long-term is resolved. Public Notices: Some local government bodies continue to push for eliminating public notices from newspapers and moving them to government websites, even though independent research ZCLEARWATER COUNTY MINNESOTA Johnson/Continued from page 14 Do you support legislation that would require districts to consider performance as well as seniority when deciding teacher layoffs? We have known for years that the key to a good education is to have the best teachers possible in the classroom. The state legislature passed a law that would have allowed schools to hire and reta'm the best teachers, but Mark Dayton vetoed it. Effectiveness, not seniority should be the most important criterion we use to hire and retain teachers. Mirmesotans have spent decades talking about the achievement gap, and we haven't done much to close it. Every study has shown that the most important factor in student achievement is teacher effectiveness, and yet our hifin" g policies don't take that into account. I would empower principals to hire and reward the best teachers, give students and parents the freedom to choose the best school, and focus early education dollars on the programs with proven success. Education, higher ed: Many STATE GENERAL ELECTION COMPOSITE SAMPLE BALLOT INSTRUCTIONS TO VOTERS: To vote, completely fill in the oval(s) next to your choice(s) like this: november 4, 2614T - JUDICIAL OFFICES JUDICIAL OFFICES COURT OF APPEALS 9TH DISTRICT COURT EDWARD J. CLEARY JQ LOIS J. LANG Q Incumbent . Incumbent Q write-in, if any write-in, if any ?~:'~,~ .... V .... Q MARGARET CHUTICH Incumbent ROBERT D. TIFFANY Incumbent Q write-in, if any Q write-in, if any KEVIN G. ROSS Q Incumbent Q write-in, if any 9TH DISTRICT COURT! Q JOHN R SOLIEN Incumbent Q write-in, if any ,~ ~2,,,~,~::: ::: :./~,: ~:,~:' Q DAVID F. HARRINGTON Incumbent C) write-in, if any Q D. KOREY WAHWASSUCK Incumbent Q write-in, if any TAMARA L. YON Incumbent write-in, if any JEFFREY S. REMICK Q Incumbent Q write-in, if any JANA AUSTAD Q Incumbent Q write-in, if any Q DAVID J. TEN EYCK Incumbent Q write-in, if any KURT J. MARBEN Q Incumbent Q write-in, if any II II CHARLES CHAD LEDUC Q Incumbent Q write-in, if any Q ANNE M. RASMUSSON Incumbent Q write-in, if any 0 employers continue to be frustrated in their ability to find qualified workers for the available jobs. What role does higher ed play in addressing this problem? What can be done to better align our higher ed course offerings with employer needs? In Minnesota there are too many people either out of work or underemployed, and too many jobs for which there aren't enough qualified workers. Minnesota also has one of the best and most extensive state college systems in the country,. State colleges can be more effective at connecting people seeking new careers with employers who need them. Our colleges need to tailor their curricula to the skills needed in today's economy, and ensure that the students they are sending out into the workforce are prepared to succeed. MNsure, the state's health care exchange, has come under heavy criticism since its creation. Is it serving its purpose? Do you advocate any changes, or should it remain as is? MNsure has been an unmitigated disaster -- and real people are getting hurt every day by this governor's incompetence. Parents can't get their children insured, out of pocket costs have spiked, and thousands of Minnesotans can't even see their own doctor or get treated in their own hospital. Rates have soared -- almost doubling for some people, and the $150 million insurance exchange website is still broken. Real people are being hurt every day. The first thing I would do is fir-e every .person on the MNsure board and all the top staff, and replace them with people who know what they are doing. I would also push for more competition and options within MNsure and work to remove barriers that are preventing the private sector from effectively competing with MNsure. Transportation: Long- range forecasts show a significantgap in transportation needs - roads and transit. Do you support additional revenue? If so, what sources of revenue should be raised for what specific programs? Minnesota doesn't spend enough money on roads. I would fully fund the Corridors of Commerce program, ensuring that every economic center is connected with great roads. I fundamentally disagree with Governor Dayton's obsessive focus on trains and trollies. For the cost of one light rail line, the state could replace every structurally deficient bridge in the state. Every one. The latest transportation plan from Dayton's Metropolitan Council is to build no new road capacity in the metropolitan region, reserving new money for bike paths, trains, and buses. I will redirect those resources. It's about setting priorities, not just raising taxes yet again. Minnesota currently bans new nuclear energy and has a moratorium on greenhouse gas-emitting resources. Should the expansion of nuclear and coal generation of electricity be included in Minnesota's energy portfolio? In general I oppose both the moratorium on nuclear energy and on clean coal, but the issue is much broader than that. If we eliminated coal and nuclear energy from our electricity supply today, most of Minnesota would be dark. There are regions of our state that get 80 percent of their electricity from coal, and the state average is nearly 60 percent. Add in nuclear, and 80 percent of our electricity comes from coal and nuclear energy, and natural gas is another 5 percent. That's 85 percent of our electricity. In Minnesota we want our energy to be clean, safe, and affordable. I support any energy source that meets those criteria. Public Notices: Some local government bodies continue to push for eliminating public notices from newspapers and moving them to government websites, even though independent research continues to show that far more people see the notices when they're published in newspapers and on newspaper websites, and that removing them from newspapers would in fact save very little money. What's your view on permitting important public notices to be disseminated only by local government bodies by means of their own websites? The goal of public notices is to notify the public that public meetings are taking place. The essence of democracy is citizen participation. I support using any and every reasonable means to ensure that the average citizen knows what government officials are doing, and oppose any attempts to limit the dissemination of that information. Open records: The City of St. Paul recently settled a civil lawsuit against the City for $800,000 (the third largest in City history). However, the settlement agreement includes a provision that prohibits city officials and employees from commenting about the settlement or the reasons it was entered into, especially to the news media. Would you support legislation prohibiting this kind of covenant in settlement agreements entered into by government agencies in Minnesota? Government shouldn't be in the business of hiding its actions from the public. I support open records, open meetings, and access to all government data that isn't explicitly private. Do you support moving the primarY election from Augnat to June in an effort to increase voter turnout? Yes. Are there other issues you want to address? I want to emphasize how important it is to finally audit state government. Everybody knows there is waste and abuse in government. Yet the more important issue is determining what works and what doesn't. For instance, the Department of Human Services gives out 1,750 grants a year, and nobody has a good idea what they accomplish. An audit of just one of those nonprofits found that they were using the money for lavish trips to the tropics, personal loans, huge salaries, spa treatments, and similar luxuries -- instead of actually helping people get jobs. I believe that if we are going to spend taxpayer money, we need to make sure it is accomplishing the goal we set in the best way possible. Right now, nobody can answer that question, and I will change that. Briefly summarize your personal background and qualifications. I was born and raised in Detroit Lakes, Minn., by wonderful,hard-working parents. Igraduated from Detroit Lakes High School, Concordia College in Moorhead and Georgetown Law School in Washington, D.C. Sondi and I were married in 1993. Sondi grew up in Crookston and graduated from Concordia with me. We now live in Plymouth with our sons Thor, 16, and Rolf, 13 and our bulldog, Che. In 2000, I was elected to the Minnesota House of Representatives and served for six years. In 2008, I was elected to the Board of Commissioners in Hennepin County, the largest county in Minnesota. Being active in my community has always been an important part of my life. I've tutored in homeless shelters in Chicago and Minneapolis, taught Sunday school and confirmation classes and coached youth football, baseball and soccer (16 teams in all, over the past 12 years). I am running for Governor for a simple reason: my experience, my temperament, and my ability to work with people of all parties and ideologies make me the right person to break the political gridlock that grips state government today. It doesn't help anybody to fight about who to blame for problems; I am interested in solvin~ them. ................................................................. ;~ ~" ~" i~:~?~. ~'~J ~!~=~V~