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The former Hartman Hide and Fur warehouse building behind the Arvig office in Detroit Lakes has sold, and the new owner is open to ideas about what to do with it. "We're still trying to assess the opportunities we have with that property and what it's going to take to use the property for some commercial use," said John Hamilton, co-owner of Hamilton Enterprises East, LLC, which bought the building for $60,000. "We're sort of open to suggestions and ideas ... we're looking forward to using input from the community. It's a community building, it's been in the community for years."
It's not easy being a manufacturer these days, with President Trump vowing to eliminate or renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, and House Speaker Paul Ryan pushing for a Border Adjustment Tax on imports. In a nutshell, NAFTA eases trade barriers among the United States, Canada and Mexico. The Border Adjustment Tax, common in other countries, but new to the United States, would stop companies from deducting the cost of imports from their revenue, which now enables them to lower their overall tax burden.
With the nighttime temperatures dipping below freezing this week, area gardeners may want to consider protecting the perennials that are starting to shoot up, said Linda Perrine, Master Gardener program coordinator. That means leaving winter mulch and dead leaves in place to protect outdoor plants for a few more weeks, or even putting that mulch back if you already removed it, she said. It's all part of the spring balancing act: Remove the mulch too soon and risk frost damage to the plants; leave the mulch too long and risk problems with mold.
DFL Sen. Kent Eken of Twin Valley has done his part to help the residents of Detroit Lakes pay for an expensive new wastewater treatment plant, with some help from his Republican colleague Sen. Bill Ingebrigtsen of Alexandria. Together, the two helped pass legislation in the Senate raising the state grant cap to $17 million from $7 million, specifically for Detroit Lakes. Funding still needs to be approved by the House.
In a move that would impact Detroit Lakes and other small Minnesota cities, U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), has introduced bipartisan legislation to boost the number of doctors able to work in rural areas. The Conrad State 30 & Physician Access Act would allow more international doctors to remain in the U.S. after completing their residency, under the condition that they practice in underserved areas, such as rural communities.
Veterans will have the chance to receive some free services, including free legal advice, at an April 26 Stand Down from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Kent Freeman Arena at the Becker County Fairgrounds. Services will include free meals, help with VA benefits, free clothing (military surplus for homeless veterans), help with housing and public benefits, information from the state DMV, chaplaincy aid, and employment assistance, said Lauri Brooke, veterans service officer for Becker County. "We've budgeted $1,000 for it," she told the Becker County Board on Tuesday.
It would be almost comical if it weren't so tragic for all involved: Since 2008, Level 3 sex offender Robert Thomas Baca has bounced around a half dozen times between prison and supervised release in Detroit Lakes. He made it to California once, Montana once, Pelican Rapids once, and most recently to the Brandy Lake area. Now he is heading back to prison again, after his latest abortive attempt to flee the area.
Becker County Transit will start Saturday bus service May 6, serving people in a roughly 5-mile radius of downtown Detroit Lakes from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Rides will cost $1.50 each way, just like they do during regular weekday hours of 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., but rides will be free the first Saturday, so people can check out the new service, said Becker County Transit Director Ryan Damlo.
Sometimes it's easy to forget how far this country has come when it comes to getting rid of its garbage. It wasn't until the 1970s that city and township dumps were closed down and cleaned up, including those in Becker County. Up until then, anything went. Barrels of arsenic were accepted as a revenue source and thrown in local dumps along with everything else. Old-timers have fond memories of shooting rats at those township dumps, or hunting for antique bottles in rural dumpsites.
Easter falls on wildly different dates from year to year. It falls on April 16 this year, but last year it fell on March 27. And the year before that it was April 5. The year before that it fell on April 20. So what gives? Does it take a mathematical genius to figure it out? Well, yes, actually. At least if you're trying to figure it out in your head.