News

Tue
04
Mar
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Family with Benson ties fights to make medical marijuana legal

For one Minnesota family, the current session of the state Legislature has one issue before it that rises above all others: Will the state approve the sale and use of medical marijuana?
Among those waiting anxiously to see what the state Legislature will do are Mick and Marlys Boone of Benson. They have a seven-year-old granddaughter who suffers from debilitating and frequent epileptic seizures. The chemicals in medical marijuana have proven to be the one drug that provides hope for Greta Botker to have a better life.
Greta is the daughter of Maria and Mark Botker of Clinton; Maria is a 1994 graduate of Benson High School and the daughter of Mick and Marlys Boone. The Botkers also have two other daughters, Emma and Lora.

Fri
28
Feb
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Humane Society of Swift County gets reservation dogs

The Humane Society of Swift County has received several dogs in a new push to re-home animals from the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

The animals were picked up this past weekend and went to foster homes in the Benson area.

Nonprofit organizations in Southwest South Dakota have secured funds to help address the dog overpopulation problem at the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.
The organizations say the money will cover the costs of spaying, neutering or relocating dogs to shelters in South Dakota, Colorado, Wyoming and Minnesota.
Lakota Animal Care will have a spaying and neutering clinic at the reservation for Tuesday and Wednesdays, which will continue twice a month through the year.

The group also plans on relocating the first 40 dogs to Minnesota shelters, the Humane Society of Swift County among the receivers.

One of the "Rez Pets" that was adopted:

Wed
26
Feb
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Blocked Benson crossings lead to tickets for BNSF

For more than 20 minutes last Thursday frustrated drivers sat at Benson’s three downtown intersections as a Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) train sat motionless, blocking the crossings. The extended blockage earned the engineer a ticket.
As one startled driver waited, she was shocked to see a young person fed up with waiting crawl beneath the idle train to get to the other side.
Benson Police Chief Ian Hodge says Thursday’s ticket was the fourth BNSF has received in less than a year for blocking the three downtown crossings for an extended period.
State statute says that, “No railway corporation shall permit a public road or street crossing a railroad track to be closed for traffic by a standing car, train, engine, or other railroad equipment, or by a switching movement which continuously blocks a crossing for longer than 10 minutes. This subdivision does not apply to cities of the first class, which regulate obstruction of streets by ordinance.”

Wed
26
Feb
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Swift County committs $50,000 toward a veterans home in Monte

Swift County is committing $50,000 toward a proposed veterans home to be built in Montevideo.
At their meeting Tuesday, Feb. 18, the board of commissioners voted unanimously to commit the funds though they won’t be needed for perhaps three to four years. The amount matches pledges already made by Lac qui Parle and Yellow Medicine counties.
A delegation from Montevideo and Chippewa County met with the Swift County commissioners to ask for the financial support. They have already committed $3 million to the $33.01 million project.
The delegation was seeking Swift County support as they prepare to head to St. Paul to meet with members of the state Legislature in hopes of getting the project included in the state bonding bill. They also need Gov. Mark Dayton’s backing.

Sat
22
Feb
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Armed robbery suspect shot by Swift County deputy

Armed robbery suspect shot by Swift County deputy

Early Saturday morning the Appleton Police department and the Swift County Sheriff’s office stopped a vehicle that matched one reported to have been driven by a suspect involved in an armed robbery that just occurred in Morris.

The vehicle was found in rural Swift County near 200th Avenue and 70th Street SW, several miles northeast of Appleton near U.S. Highway 59 shortly before 1 a.m.  During the traffic stop, a Swift County deputy sheriff shot the suspect. The suspect was the only person in the vehicle and the only person injured at the scene, the sheriff’s department reports.

Fri
14
Feb
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Students will be in class into first week of June

The bitter cold and blizzard conditions that marked January led to four days of school being cancelled.
January 6 the high only reached a minus 11 degrees after a low of a minus 24 degrees. With the National Weather Service forecasting bitterly cold windchills, Gov. Mark Dayton order all state schools closed. Windchills fell to a very dangerous 52 below zero that day in Benson and 57 below in the Glenwood area.
January 16 winds gusting 50 mph created blizzard conditions throughout western Minnesota, reducing visibility to the front end or a vehicle at times. Multiple cars went into the ditches along area roads.
January 22 bitter cold and blowing snow led to schools being closed.
January 27 schools were closed with blizzard conditions reduced visibility, caused drifts to form across roads and dropped windchills to a minus 45 degrees.

Thu
13
Feb
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February trying to make the record books for cold

It’s not a record you want to see broken, but one that just may be by the time this winter season is finished.
The winter of 2007-2008 holds the local record for the most days with below zero temperatures at 61. But already this winter the area has recorded 55 days below zero putting it in a tie for fifth place with the winter of 1996-1997 and only 6 days behind the record.
Even though western Minnesota is forecast to have highs in mid to upper 30s, with lows teens and 20s this week, the National Weather Service (NWS) is forecasting much colder temperatures by the weekend. Below zero days are forecast to return by Saturday and linger into at least the middle of next week. If the current forecast proves accurate, the area should be in a tie for second place by next Tuesday at 59 days below zero.
But then forecasts are educated guesses.

Tue
11
Feb
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Cold causing water pipes to freeze - 10th Street South problems today

by Reed Anfinson, Editor and Publisher

****The City of Benson has experienced a water main break on 10th Street South. Repairs will start on the break today  at 12pm and will take 2-3 hours. Residents affected will be those on 10th Street South from Kansas Avenue to Homewood Avenue.

Tue
11
Feb
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Organic Transition Cost Share program deadline is Friday

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) reminds growers of the February 14, 2014 deadline to apply for the 2013 Minnesota Organic Transition Cost Share program.
The program helps farmers who are transitioning their land or livestock to certified organic status. It reimburses part of the cost to work with a USDA-accredited organic certifying agency during the transition period, which typically lasts 36 months. Certifying agencies visit farms and verify that the farmers’ practices comply with federal organic regulations.
In addition, farmers can request reimbursement for soil testing costs and registration fees to attend an organic education conference in Minnesota or a neighboring state.
Farmers transitioning to organic can receive a rebate of 75 percent of these eligible costs. The maximum payment is $750 per year for three years or until they achieve organic certification, whichever comes first.

Tue
11
Feb
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Group seeks solutions to child care needs

Providing families with affordable, reliable, and flexible day care is a substantial challenge in many rural communities around Minnesota.
When a community can’t provide the day care services families need, they will look for jobs and homes in communities where the services are offered.
When families in rural Minnesota can’t find day care services that meet their needs, Minnesota loses part of its potential workforce as one parent is forced to stay at home with a child.
To address the day care challenges facing rural western Minnesota, First Children’s Finance and the Southwest Initiative Foundation have teamed up for a program called Greater Than Minnesota. It builds on the themes that:
 - Greater Minnesota is greater than the sum of all its parts.
- Greater Minnesota is greater than the challenges it faces.
- Greater Minnesota has dreams for its children that are greater than the status quo.

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