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Jerri Linke doesn't consider herself a political person. But there she was on Friday, at the microphone in front of close to 500 people at a town hall meeting on health care reform. "I just could not keep myself from saying my piece," Linke, a retired educator who lives in Spicer, said afterwards. "I just have been so concerned about what I'm seeing." She said she sees a 1,018-page document with no specifics about health care reform or about its cost. "Nothing is spelled out. Everything is generalities.
WILLMAR -- Mary Buckentine drove almost two hours Friday from her home in Plato to ask Rep.
WILLMAR -- More than 30 people waited in line for the microphone so they could have a chance to speak this afternoon at a town hall meeting on health care reform, hosted in Willmar by Rep. Collin Peterson of the Seventh Congressional District. Although the debate was spirited and occasionally noisy, it stayed orderly. More than 300 people packed the community room at the Kandiyohi County Health and Human Services Building for the panel discussion and question-and-answer.
WILLMAR -- A judge has agreed to reclassify the Cushman A.
WILLMAR -- The Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission will watch its pennies for the rest of the year, a move that could save up to 3 percent of the agency's budgeted spending. The measure, prompted by cutbacks undertaken by both the city and the county, was urged last month by the EDC's joint operations board. At a meeting Thursday, the board stopped short of voting to make the cutbacks official. But the EDC staff was asked to try to reduce spending over the next four months. Steve Renquist, executive director of the Economic Development Commission, called it
Sweet corn, beets, string beans and apples are piled high at the Simon Produce and Baked Goods stand at the Becker Market. It's home-grown, and harvested so recently that the earth still clings to the freshly dug carrots. Behind the table, Charalin Simon greets customers, weighs their purchases on an old-fashioned scale and bundles up vegetables, jars of jam and home-baked treats for buyers to take home. Willmar-area residents don't have to go far to find fresh food.
WILLMAR -- Continued tight management of staffing levels and expenses has helped Rice Memorial Hospital earn a net return for the first half of 2009. As of June 30, the city-owned hospital had posted a profit of $193,353. Preliminary financial results for July show the third quarter of the year also is off to a good start, said Bill Fenske, chief financial officer for Rice.
WILLMAR -- When Laura Becker opened the doors at Camille's Closet on a warm, sunny morning last week, three customers were already waiting outside. When they left 15 minutes later, one of them was wearing the cotton tropical-print shirt she'd bought at a bargain-basement price, and the shirt's original owner had earned a percentage of the sale. Everything old is new again at Camille's Closet, one of the region's few consignment stores specializing in women's clothing. Becker, the owner, says she loves what she does. "You are a retail store but you also are providing a service," she said.
WILLMAR -- Patient admissions will continue to slowly decline and profits will stagnate, according to a newly revised set of financial assumptions for Rice Memorial Hospital over the next five years. The five-year financial plan was reviewed Friday by the finance committee of the hospital board of directors. Committee members voted to recommend its approval when the full hospital board meets on Aug.
WILLMAR -- Construction on a new animal shelter for the Humane Society of Kandiyohi County started in earnest less than two months ago, but already Dawn Olson can point to where the kitten room will be, where the dogs will be bathed and where all the pet food will be stored. The building's roof is on.