Candidates for Minnesota governor talk rural issues

GOP gubernatorial candidates Woodbury Mayor Mary Giuliani Stephens (center left) and Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson (center right) talked before a rural issues forum. DFL candidate Chris Coleman (right), former mayor of St. Paul, talked with Reed Anfinson of the Center for Rural Development.

Candidates for governor from both political parties gathered Friday to address pressing issues in rural Minnesota, including a shortage of workers, housing and health care.

The location: A Bloomington hotel, which seemed to encapsulate the perceived short shrift given rural communities in the state’s political dialogue.

Candidates are hustling to win support at Feb. 6 precinct caucuses, where attendees will have a chance to select their choice for governor in a nonbinding straw poll. Caucusgoers will also begin the process of choosing delegates to their state conventions in June, where the parties will endorse candidates for governor.

With DFL Gov. Mark Dayton not running for re-election, the race is wide open and contested on both sides.

Republican and DFL candidates both pledged solidarity with greater Minnesota, albeit from diametrically opposing viewpoints.

Republicans Jeff Johnson and Keith Downey said the state needs to impose fewer burdens on builders and health insurance companies to free up companies to meet the needs of rural residents.

“You can’t build low cost housing in Minnesota anymore,” said Downey, a former Republican lawmaker from Edina who also previously served as chairman of the state Republican Party. Downey blamed government regulations on developers for driving up the cost of much needed housing in rural communities.

DFL Reps. Paul Thissen, Tina Liebling and Erin Murphy, U.S. Rep. Tim Walz, former St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman and State Auditor Rebecca Otto said the state needs to spend money on housing, child care, health care and other rural needs.

Thissen said when he arrived at the Legislature in 2003, government solved a deficit by reducing aid to local communities and child care subsidies, cuts that have hurt rural communities the most, he said.

Mary Giuliani Stephens, the Republican mayor of Woodbury, promised to tailor solutions to individual communities, like a parent with her children: “I will not do a one-size-fits-all for greater Minnesota. We are one state and one family. But even in my family my children different,” she said.

Coleman advocated for rural broadband internet access: “How are you going to attract families when you have to drive around in your car to get cell coverage so your kid can do his homework?” he asked.

Johnson, the lone Republican on the Hennepin County Board, said greater Minnesota residents should have more health insurance options like low cost catastrophic coverage with high deductibles: “Who am I to say they shouldn’t be able to do that?” he asked.

Walz touted his experience representing one of the nation’s biggest agriculture producing congressional districts: “Not theoretically representing rural Minnesota but actually representing rural Minnesota,” he said.

Otto cited a set of policy plans she’s released, including two years of tuition free college she said would help provide businesses with the workers they need in greater Minnesota.

Reed Anfinson, who owns two rural newspapers and sits on the board of the Center for Rural Policy and Development, which sponsored the forum, was mostly unimpressed with what he called “platitudes” of the candidates.

“With each generation people in the metro get farther away from having a tie to greater Minnesota,” he said.

Anfinson said what rural communities most desperately need are people after decades of population stagnation and loss.

Swift County, where he publishes the Swift County Monitor-News, has lost one-third of its population since its peak in the 1950s, he said.

“We need people creation,” he said.

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Boyfriend linked to death of missing MN woman

EDINA, Minn. – Investigators in Arkansas say an Edina woman listed as missing is dead, and her boyfriend, who she met on the internet, is responsible.

Documents filed by the state police in Little Rock, Arkansas indicate while Joseph Porter is officially charged with possessing a stolen vehicle, he is also implicated in the murder of 27-year-old Minnesota resident Cristina Prodan. Prodan was reported missing from her Edina condominium January 5 by her mother.

CRISTINA PRODAN: Missing from Edina, MN – 5 Jan 2018 – Age 27

— CRIMEWATCHERS (@Kimster_CW) January 17, 2018

Documents in Pulaski County Circuit Court detail how the couple met on Facebook, and Porter soon moved to Edina to live with with Prodan to embark on what can only be described as a violent relationship. Edina Police were called to the couple’s residence a number of times on domestic violence reports, including one where Prodan says Porter raped her. She filed an order of protection, which Porter broke, and the two resumed their relationship before Prodan disappeared. Porter’s whereabouts were also unknown.

Investigators contacted Porter’s mother, Arlie Porter, who reportedly told them that in December her son had said he was going to kidnap Cristina, drain her bank accounts and empty her safe deposit box, and take her where no one would ever find her.

The case apparently began to turn when investigators located a residence in Jacksonville, Arkansas owned by Richard Crawford, the legal husband of Joseph Porter. Federal agents went to the trailer January 10, and found Porter suffering from serious burns to his face, hands and body. Both Porter and Crawford were detained for questioning and a warrant was obtained to search their residence. Inside investigators found numerous personal items belonging to Cristina Prodan.

During questioning Crawford reportedly told detectives that Porter confided he and Cristina had gotten into a heated argument and that she was not alive when they left Minnesota. Crawford said Porter had driven to New Orleans, where he doused Cristina’s body with gasoline and set her on fire. It was while doing this that Porter reportedly burned his hands and face.

Investigators subsequently learned that police in New Orleans had recovered a burned body on January 6. The body was found just a quarter mile from where a vehicle that Porter was in possession of was stolen.

Joseph Porter is being held with no bail in Pulaski County, Arkansas, but no official murder charges have yet been filed in Cristina Prodan’s death.

© 2018 KARE-TV

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Searching For Apartments For Rent Edina?

Are you searching for apartments for rent Edina? If so, there are many factors that you need to consider before renting out the best apartment in the area. There are more than 162 active apartments for rent in the area at this moment. Most of these apartments will spend an average of 65 days on the market before being rented out to the right customer. Some of the best neighborhoods to rent out a house in Edina are Linden Hills, Armatage, Fulton, and Lynnhurst. There are many things to consider when choosing the best apartment in the area. Here are important tips that you need to consider when choosing the best apartment in the region.

Your credit score history will play an important part when renting a house in Edina MN. There are many landlords who look for a good credit score of the renter when renting out the apartment. It is true that some landlords will place little emphasis on the credit score history of the renter, but all landlords don’t think along such lines. That is why it is important to take care of your credit score when renting out an apartment in the area.

Your budget plays an important part when renting out a house in Edina. Financial experts recommend that you don’t spend more than 28% of your monthly income on the rental of the apartment. This should include the utility bills too. Hence, you should allocate a budget according to your monthly income and stick to it when shopping for the best apartment in the region. Make sure you evaluate the neighborhood before agreeing to sign the document. It is better that you visit the community during different times of the day to get a feel of the neighborhood before renting out the house. Do you feel safe? Is the neighborhood quiet? You can get a better feel for the neighborhood by visiting the place in the evening or during a weekend. Those are the times where most of the neighbors will be in their homes. These are important things to consider when renting out a house in Edina MN.

Most renters forget to get renter’s insurance when moving into an apartment in the area. They think that the landlord’s insurance will cover their belongings too. But this is not the actual case. In fact, the landlord’s insurance won’t cover your personal belongings during a natural disaster. That is why you need to get a renter’s insurance from a local insurance provider before moving into the apartment in MN. Renter’s insurance is not that expensive as most of you would think. You can easily get renter’s insurance for $25 a month for a $50,000 cover. These are important factors to look for when choosing the best apartment in the area.

In conclusion, searching for a suitable apartment in MN is not an easy task. There are numerous factors to look for when doing so. The above read offers information on what to look for when searching for apartments for rent Edina.

Moving Into Edina Apartments

Before you can move into Edina apartments, you need to do some research on the matter. There are plenty of nice places to live, but there are those that you want to avoid. Don’t waste your time by using the tips here to weed out the bad apartments.

You want an apartment that has favorable reviews. You can use websites that have listings on them to look for reviews, or you can find them on third party sites of some kind. Either way, you want to find reviews that tell you more about the place before you spend your money on it. You don’t want to move in only to find out that you hate it and don’t want to live there. All too often do people barely do their research and they find out too late that they didn’t get what they paid for.

The price of apartments should be something you look into carefully. You want to know that you are getting a fair deal and that you’re not paying too much. One other thing to watch out for are apartments that are super cheap. They may be that way because they have a lot of problems and the complex has trouble getting people to rent from them. If a place is too highly priced, then you may find that it’s because you get more amenities. Either way, find what you can fit into your budget and go with that instead of what you can barely afford.

When you’re moving into a new place you’re going to have to pay a lot of money up front to get into it. There are, however, some places that have a good deal that you can get if you move in with them. For instance, an apartment complex may have a move in special where you don’t have to pay a security deposit. You want to find deals if you can, but don’t get suckered into renting a bad apartment with a bad reputation just because it’s a cheaper price for you to move into than other places.

It’s easy to find a place to live in Edina. If you want to live in Edina apartments, you should use the guide you just went through. Then, it shouldn’t take you that long to get what you need. Anyone can find an affordable place that’s nice if they look hard enough.

Four Edina MN Restaurants Serving Up Great Food And Good Times

It is back to Edina MAN because I have four more restaurants to tell you about. You are going to know where to take the family for a nice meal for sure. This city near Minneapolis is charming, and there are 80+ restaurants there to choose from. Rest assured, the four names I’m giving you are in the top tier when it comes to places to eat. It is time to discover four more restaurants in Edina MN that you and your family will enjoy.

Pizzeria Lola seems to be a very special restaurant in Edina. It is certainly one of the top ranked establishments, but it is something else I noticed that made me say that. On a top travel site that groups restaurants into categories, Pizzeria Lola seems to be on each list for the city of Edina. Also, it’s not just a top ranked restaurant. It is actually #1. Located on Xerxes Avenue South, Pizzeria Lola not only serves up the best pizza in town but short ribs and great dessert options, too.

Red Cow is up next, and it is located on West 50th Street. Can you tell that this is a place to get a good burger? In fact, you have all kinds of great options. Have you ever had a breakfast burger before? This establishment also serves up pulled pork, and that’s always a favorite of mine. However, if I am at a burger joint, I’m going to order up a burger, what about you?

George and the Dragon is the next restaurant, and that is a cool name for a place to eat. Located on West 50th Street, George and the Dragon serves up some unique eats. For example, lumpia and battered green beans are on the menu. The establishment also features pretzel bread, fish and chips, bangers and mash and a lot of other great menu items.

Town Hall Station is on Valley View Road, and it is known for its beer, tacos and much more. Reviews mention that it is a pub but an upscale pub. Whether you pick Town Hall Station or one of the other three restaurants I have mentioned, you will enjoy your meals for sure. Take your time, as Edina MN seems like a very peaceful and relaxing place to be. Each place of interest you visit in Edina MN should be an adventure, and that includes the places you eat.