Danielle Killey covers local government for the South Washington County Bulletin. She has worked as a reporter for other Forum Communications newspapers since 2011. She graduated from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities with a journalism degree.
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ST. PAUL – A proposal for Fargo- and Sioux Falls, S.D.-based Sanford Health to take control of Minnesota’s Fairview Health Services faces opposition, but both companies’ officials say they want to continue talks if it could benefit patients. “We think there’s merit in us exploring it,” Fairview interim CEO Chuck Mooty said. “Whether a relationship between Fairview and Sanford Health – or any other partner – would advance our clinical, research and educational goals is yet to be determined.”
ST. PAUL – Making Minnesota’s tax system fair is a key goal for state lawmakers and the governor. But the definition of tax fairness is more elusive than it might seem. “Fairness is certainly in the eye of the beholder,” University of Illinois Professor J. Fred Giertz of the Institute of Government and Public Affairs said. Some argue everyone should pay roughly the same percentage toward government services, while others say the rich can afford to cover some of the cost for the lower-income taxpayers.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota communities have plenty of suggestions for how to spend state dollars borrowed for public works projects. In fact, they have too many. State lawmakers and Gov. Mark Dayton are working to whittle down more than 150 requests topping $3 billion for trails, civic and community centers, roads and bridges, and many other projects. “There is a huge need in every single area,” said Rep. Alice Hausman, DFL-St. Paul, chairwoman of the House Capital Investment Committee.
ST. PAUL – More students could attend college if a plan allowing undocumented immigrants to pay in-state tuition at public colleges is approved, a Minnesota lawmaker argues. “We want to eliminate the achievement gap so that students who have not traditionally been going to college are going to college,” said Sen. Sandy Pappas, DFL-St. Paul. “We need them in our future workforce.”
ST. PAUL – Thousands of lower-income Minnesotans could continue to get health insurance from the state even as major reforms take root under a plan lawmakers moved forward Wednesday. House Majority Leader Erin Murphy, DFL-St. Paul, said the state needs to update and continue MinnesotaCare, a health insurance program that serves “people who are working but don’t have access to affordable health care.” “MinnesotaCare’s future is in doubt,” Murphy said, because of changes such as the state’s new health insurance exchange signed into law Wednesday by Gov. Mark Dayton.
ST. PAUL — Gun control backers have given up controversial proposals in an effort to pass some measures aimed at curbing gun violence in Minnesota. The House Public Safety Committee chairman dropped a plan to expand background checks to virtually all gun sales that was set for a vote Tuesday evening. He said there is a new agreement that will include only checks for purchases at gun shows.
ST. PAUL – A House committee is poised to take a vote on a gun control bill tonight. As it stood when the committee recessed just before noon, the measure included expanded background checks. But amendments tonight could dramatically change the bill. “There is no easy answer,” author Rep. Michael Paymar, DFL-St. Paul said, “This bill is only part of the answer.” A major objection to the bill has been the expansion of background checks to cover virtually every gun purchase, including those at gun shows.