Nathan Hansen has been a reporter and editor with the Farmington Independent and the Rosemount Town Pages since 1997. He is very tall.
- Member for
- 2 years 4 months
The Farmington School District got what amounts to a road map to budget cuts Monday with the presentation of a draft of a report prepared to identify potential savings. The report, prepared by accounting firm Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, focused on district-level administration. It identified from $636,000 to nearly $1.1 million in potential savings, depending on a number of factors. Those savings will not come all at once, assuming they come at all.
Doing less with less. That is how Dakota County Finance Director Matt Smith described the recommended 2011 Dakota County budget to the Dakota County Board of Commissioners this week. The recommended budget is $307.1 million, compared to the 2010 budget of about $368 million. The recommended tax levy for 2011 is $129.402 million, a .8 percent increase over this year's levy of $128.4 million. Smith said the budgets for both county operations and capital improvement program will be smaller.
The Farmington School Board will hire an outside investigator to look into whether one of its own members has been breaking the board's code of conduct. The board voted 3-1 with two abstentions Monday to take a closer look at whether Tim Burke's frequent requests for information, interaction with district employees and comments about district actions qualify as a violation of that code. The decision comes a month after an Oct. 11 meeting at which board members confronted Burke about what some have called bullying behavior and burdensome requests for information.
When we were younger and our parents asked, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" you probably said something fairly generic like, a doctor, teacher or a lawyer. Now that you understand there are so many more choices out there it's overwhelming. High school students have time to decide, make mistakes and change our minds. Rather, it is later in life where the world will eat you and spit you back out. From the time our parents were in college to now, many things have changed. Colleges are more selective, more expensive and you need more education to go further in life.
Does everyone you know seem starved for time? I work nearly every day between my two jobs. I try to fit in my graduate schoolwork around the stuff I'm doing to make a living. Sometimes I sleep five hours a night. Today my dog is sleeping next to me as I work, his tiny paws curled under him. He is not starved for time. Starved for Pup-peroni treats, maybe, but not time. All of my co-workers and friends are busier than they would like, hoping to find more time for themselves and their family. Yet this week I came across a shocking statistic indicating time-wasting is rampant.
We as a society have become increasingly accustomed to a daily onslaught of videos of people we will never actually meet. We can hardly check our e-mail or scan our Facebook pages anymore without seeing a video of a sneezing kitten, a dog running into a wall or some unfortunate guy getting whacked in his privates, a home-video favorite since well before Bob Saget was televising crotch-related tragedies for all the country to see. It can all start to feel like a bit much when you're on the receiving end. When you're on the other side, though?
A collision involving a Farmington school bus and a compact car caused considerable damage but no injuries Friday afternoon. The accident occurred shortly after 3 p.m. at the intersection of Highway 52 and 200th Street in Vermillion Township. The school bus had just dropped off its last student on the west side of Highway 52 and was turning around to pick up students at Farmington Elementary School when it was hit by a compact-type car heading southbound on the highway. There were no students on the bus and no passengers in the vehicle.
As far as Laurie Manley is concerned, pets are family, and she believes they should be treated with the same respect as any other relative. In life, and in death. Manley does most of her business at the one-year-old Heaven Scent Floral Design creating memorial arrangements for funerals. But she'd like to offer the same service to people who have lost a beloved pet. With input from customers, she can create tributes either lasting or temporary to animal companions that have passed on. The business specialty was born from Manley's experience with her own pet, an English Bulldog named Oreo.
As an assistant to the superintendent, Nancy Bjerke spent more than a decade running elections for the Farmington School District. She's retired now, but you'll still find her at the polls on Election Day. Bjerke is one member of the crew of election judges that kept things running during Tuesday's election. From setting up polling places to counting ballots to packing everything up at the end of the day, she and others like her are responsible for making sure everybody who wants to vote gets a chance to.
In the daytime, it doesn't look like much. But for two nights last weekend the patchwork construction of two-by-fours and black plastic that sprawls across Matt Philpot's backyard became the scariest place in Farmington. Philpot's creation -- he calls it the Tunnel of Terror -- is quickly becoming a Halloween tradition in his north Farmington neighborhood.