State governments have a plethora of services and information available online. People want it. They need it. Pew Research finds that approximately one-third of U.S. adults reported using an app or the internet to access information provided by their state government in the past 12 months. Availability isn't enough, however, and people too often can't get to the information or services easily, based on a new report by Information Technology and Innovation Foundation. The conclusion is that citizens deserve better.
Students are heading back to school. Take a deep breath and it's a heart-warming moment — snapping of first-day photos, meeting new teachers, seeing friends again. Then exhale and fears creep in — being bullied on the bus, being approached by strangers, worrying about school violence and specifically school shootings. No place is completely safe, but schools are the safest place overall for children to be when not at home with a caring, responsible adult. National statistics support this statement. Consider a few findings from two recent, related reports:
Pulitzer Prizes for 2018 will be announced Aug. 16. The awards — 13 each year — recognize achievements in American journalism as well as literature and music. This year's announcement day also will mark a concerted effort by numerous editorial boards across the nation to draw attention to the vital role the free press (i.e. newspapers like this one) plays in our nation.
If you're thinking about skipping Tuesday's primary election, think again. Our representative form of government uses primaries for two main purposes: • to select a candidate to represent a political party for a certain race in the general election. • to narrow the field of candidates in non-partisan races to two for each seat. But there are other, less tangible reasons of equal importance.
Slowly, slowly, the Minnesota judicial system moves closer to the openness in Wisconsin, Iowa and North Dakota courtrooms. A pilot project on video and audio coverage of criminal proceedings proved successful, so the Minnesota Supreme Court this month appropriately made permanent most of the rules tested over the past 2 1/2 years.
Bills passed during the Minnesota legislative session and signed into law by the governor typically take effect Aug. 1. This year four laws had a July 1 date. Three you could consider tweaks to existing laws, but one is of particular note for parents of young athletes: Trainers now need a license.
Three crashes on Wisconsin roads killed five people over the 2018 Memorial Day weekend. Not to be outdone, Minnesota had six deaths in six separate crashes.
You can expect conditions to intensify starting this week as the season officially changes with the summer solstice. The earth is tilting on its axis, heat is rising and storms surely are ahead. Voters need to dress, prepare and act accordingly. Here's a short list to consider before heading out: • Sunscreen
A salute, a nod, a sincere "Thank you." Veterans perhaps don't expect more than these in recognition of their service, but that doesn't mean a simple acknowledgement is all we can or should provide.
Are you fed up with government? Perhaps you feel just the opposite — you're happy with the way things are going locally, across the state or around the nation. Whichever way you lean, now is the time to think about running for office. In Minnesota, the filing window for most contests (the exceptions are schools and small municipalities) began May 22 and runs through 5 p.m. June 5. Consider these reasons why you might run for the Nov. 6, 2018, election or help candidates of your choice in their bids to run now and then might run yourself a couple years from now.