Marisa Helms Feature Archive

The American Episcopal Church is facing a political and theological battle over homosexuality. At issue is the confirmation of a gay bishop-elect of New Hampshire, and the blessing of same sex unions. The two issues are threatening to fracture the Episcopal church during its General Convention being held this week in Minneapolis. (07/30/2003)
A Wisconsin Army reservist was buried Wednesday in his home town of Spooner, Wisconsin. Sgt. First Class Dan Gabrielson died in Iraq on July 9, when his truck was hit by a rocket-propelled grenade. His nephew -- also a reservist in the same platoon -- accompanied Gabrielson's remains home to Spooner for the funeral. (07/23/2003)
Former Dayton Hudson CEO Ken Dayton is being remembered for his charitable giving to the arts. Dayton died Saturday at the age of 80, one day short of his 81st birthday. Dayton and his wife contributed more than $100 million to several arts organizations as well as a host of other civic and cultural groups over a period of 50 years. He was the last of the five Dayton brothers to run the family's retail business and left the company's leadership in the early '80s. He is the uncle of U.S. Sen. Mark Dayton. (07/21/2003)
Leaders of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System voted Wednesday to sharply increase tuition over the next two years. (07/17/2003)
The former clinical director of the state's sexual offenders program told state lawmakers Monday night that she quit her job earlier this year because of plans to release some of the sexual psychopaths in the program. Her testimony, however, conflicted with that of the state human services commissioner. Kevin Goodno told the joint legislative committee that there are no plans to release committed sexual offenders and called such allegations "outrageous." (07/15/2003)
Rev. Naw-Karl Mua, the St. Paul pastor recently released from a Laotian prison, says he wants the U.S. government to help Hmong rebels living in the jungle. On Saturday Mua spoke publicly for the first time since his release at a press conference in Maplewood. (07/12/2003)
Welfare revisions scheduled to take effect Tuesday are on hold after a county judge blocked the state from cutting benefits to thousands of low-income families. Ramsey County District Judge Judith Tilsen halted the benefit cuts with a temporary restraining order Monday, saying she was concerned that some of the changes were being made without federal approval. (07/01/2003)
Administrators and lawyers representing many of Minnesota's colleges and universities say they don't plan to change any admissions policies following the Supreme Court's split ruling on affirmative action Monday. The court struck down a University of Michigan undergraduate admission standard that provided minority applicants an advantage simply because of their race - 20 points on a 150-point scale. (06/23/2003)
A war of words has erupted at the highest levels of state government in the wake of a newspaper article about Minnesota's sexual offender program. The article in Sunday's Star Tribune was headlined, <i>State looks to release sexual psychopaths.</i> Attorney General Mike Hatch is criticizing the Pawlenty administration for forcing early release of predators to save state money. Pawlenty chief of staff Charlie Weaver counters the article is wrong, and Hatch's claims politically motivated. (06/23/2003)
The U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge told a St. Paul audience Thursday night that safety doesn't just come from Washington, but from the efforts of states, cities and counties. Ridge delivered the keynote address at a symposium that attracted about 300 Minnesota public safety business, and government leaders. (06/20/2003)
Ten candidates are vying for the 2004 Democratic nomination for president. The first primary isn't until January, but the candidates are already in high gear raising money. Once, Democrats could count on Minnesota for votes, but many say that's no longer the case. Now Democratic hopefuls come to Minnesota looking for money. And at this point in the presidential campaign, money is everything. Candidate Howard Dean of Vermont attended a fundraiser in St. Paul on Sunday. He came not only to share his views of the presidency, but to pass the basket among the party faithful. (06/09/2003)
The cost of going to a public college in Minnesota will likely go up hundreds of dollars this fall. Gov. Tim Pawlenty is expected to sign a higher education funding bill that cuts each of the state's public university systems 15 percent. The bill that passed at the end of the regular session provides $10 million more than Pawlenty had proposed. Still, critics say the cuts are short-sighted and will lead to an erosion of quality at the state's colleges. (05/21/2003)
Concern about the spread of SARS is affecting college campuses across the country and in Minnesota. So far, three universities in the U.S. have said they do not want families from SARS affected countries to attend their graduation ceremonies. Minnesota colleges are just starting to develop their own SARS policies. Officials say while it's wise to be cautious, it's important to keep fear of SARS in check. (05/12/2003)
The latest Minnesota Public Radio-Pioneer Press opinion poll shows overwhelming approval of George W. Bush's performance as president. (05/05/2003)
The University of Minnesota's School of Music is marking 100 years of developing many of the region's foremost music teachers, performers and composers. (05/02/2003)