Statewide: November 17, 2010 Archive
Clearwater County is looking to get out of the health care business.
The county has owned and operated a hospital, clinic and ambulance service in Bagley for decades. But county officials tell The Bemidji Pioneer newspaper that the county has been losing money on the facilities, putting a burden on local taxpayers.
Clearwater County is in the process of selling their health facilities to a Grand Forks company called Cocoon Holdings LLC. The plan is to complete the purchase by the end of the year.
Not everyone is comfortable with the sale. A group of nurses employed at the facilities say they've received little information on the pending sale or the company vying for ownership. Some nurses are concerned they may have to reapply for their jobs. One nurse told The Pioneer she's concerned that Cocoon Holdings has no ties to the community.
The company would operate the health facilities in Bagley as non-profit entities.
The sale of hospitals and clinics in greater Minnesota has become more common in recent years.
A new community journalism effort is underway in Fargo Moorhead.
The Peoples Press Project is a non-profit arm of the weekly High Plains Reader. Peoples Press is working with students at Minnesota State University Moorhead to post video of local government meetings.
Organizer Duke Schempp says the Peoples Press provides non-partisan research, education and training. One of the goals is to increase access to information and support local voices that lack access to media.
Right now the group is providing school board and county commission video, but will soon add human rights commission meetings.
So far, the videos are attracting few viewers.
Schempp is a long time local community organizer, he previously headed the Moorhead-based People Escaping Poverty Project.
Posted at 11:00 AM on November 17, 2010
by David Cazares
Filed under: Southwest Minnesota
Mark Steil, who covers Southwest Minnesota for Minnesota Public Radio News, talks about important stories on his beat during Morning Edition with Cathy Wurzer.
Mark talked about how the Prairie Correctional Facility in Appleton may reopen in more than a year now that the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has announced plans to send inmates to Colorado and Minnesota. Here's some background on the prison, which shut down because of tough economic conditions.
He also discussed the state Agriculture Department's warnings to farms linked to illegal sales of raw milk. The raw milk issue surfaced in May when the state linked an E. coli outbreak to unpasteurized milk sold by the Michael Hartmann farm.
Mark also talked about a proposal for a new fiber optic system form homes in southern Minnesota that could wire every home in Sibley County.