Marisa Helms Feature Archive

Gov. Tim Pawlenty Tuesday warned high school students to show up for class or risk being denied a driver's license. Pawlenty has asked the departments of Education and Public Safety to draft new rules linking school attendance with driving privileges. The move has received mostly positive reviews from educators and law enforcement officials. But some critics say it obscures the root causes of poor attendance and dropouts. (09/07/2004)
Vice President Dick Cheney and his Democratic challenger, John Edwards, brought their campaigns to Minnesota on Monday. Cheney spoke to a group of nearly 500 supporters at the Minnesota State Fair, while Edwards spoke to thousands of supporters at an AFL-CIO Labor Day rally in St. Paul. (09/06/2004)
Not all the students heading to college this fall will be fresh-faced teens. Older students are increasingly heading back to school, and it's a market for-profit colleges are finding lucrative. (09/06/2004)
It's summer camp season in Minnesota. But for about 175 teenagers from around the state, it's not about canoeing and campfires. They're attending an unusual summer camp at the University of Minnesota's Design Institute in Minneapolis. (07/30/2004)
The Bloomington City Council has passed the first metro area smoking ban. Starting Sept. 1, 2004, all public places and workplaces in Bloomington become smoke-free. The ban would take effect in bars and restaurants next March. The council passed the ban on a 6-1 vote, after four hours of testimony and debate that stretched into the early morning hours. (07/20/2004)
Vice President Dick Cheney rallied the Republican Party faithful Saturday at the Minneapolis Convention Center. The visit was part of Cheney's Midwest campaign swing through Michigan, Iowa and Nebraska. It follows just days after President George W. Bush's rally in Duluth. (07/17/2004)
County elections officials across Minnesota say the Secretary of State has overstepped her authority, by making changes to election policy without allowing public debate or legislative review. (07/15/2004)
A California judge has thrown out the 14-year prison sentence of former Symbionese Liberation Army member Sara Jane Olson of St. Paul. A new hearing will be held to decide how much prison time she should serve. Olson pleaded guilty in 2001 to taking part in two attempts to bomb Los Angeles Police Department cars in 1975. She was originally sentenced to five years and four months in prison. That sentence was thrown out by a three-member board, and Olson was sentenced to 14 years in prison. (07/13/2004)
Security must extend from the farmer to the fork as the government works to ensure that the nation's food supply is kept safe from terrorists, Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge said on Tuesday at the University of Minnesota. (07/06/2004)
There's something about a treehouse. Up high above the world, a treehouse affords kids and adults the ability to see things from a different perspective. It can be a special, private space that says "No grown-ups allowed!" Many people create designs in their heads for the perfect treehouse, but they rarely get to build them. This summer, at the Minnesota Arboretum, local designers and architects have seen their treehouse dreams become a reality. (06/27/2004)
Mexican President Vicente Fox visits the Twin Cities Friday as part of a three state swing through the midwest. Fox will meet with Governor Tim Pawlenty and others on this first-ever visit by a Mexican head of state. He is expected to discuss trade relations between the state and Mexico, and advocate for greater protections for Mexican immigrants living here. (06/17/2004)
Politicians are the celebrities Wednesday night at an Oscars-like awards ceremony for the "worst political ads in America." The event is a fundraiser for a new non-partisan policy organization called Growth and Justice. (05/26/2004)
The price of a college education in Minnesota is going up again this fall. The University of Minnesota and the state's two- and four-year colleges are raising tuition by double digits. Despite consecutive years of big tuition hikes at the U and MnSCU, enrollments have grown to record levels at these institutions. Higher education officials say while most students are coming up with the extra cash for college, the trend toward higher tuition is not sustainable in the long run. (05/20/2004)
University of Minnesota undergraduates will likely pay 14 percent more for tuition next fall. University President Robert Bruininks proposed the increase and other budget measures to the Board of Regents Friday. Bruininks also announced a new scholarship program. Officials are calling it the largest effort in university history to raise scholarship support for students. (05/14/2004)
Members of the Minneapolis City Council will introduce a smoking ban ordinance on Friday, which would ban smoking in all bars, restaurants, and night clubs. There is little agreement among customers or business people on the proposal. (05/11/2004)