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GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS

In its 2021 uniform crime report released Friday, Aug. 12, the state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension reported 201 murders, an 8.5% annual increase, and a 21.6% increase in violent crime. The previous murder record was set in 2020, when Minnesota had 185 murders — a 58% increase from the 117 reported in 2019.
Tomassoni, an independent lawmaker from Chisholm, was first elected to the Minnesota Legislature in 1992. He revealed his diagnosis with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS, in 2021, and continued to serve as a senator.
The Iron Range lawmaker's legacy will include a $25 million law that will help fund research of ALS, which he had for the last year of his life.
What's coming up for the Alexandria Planning Commission, the Douglas County Board of Commissioners and Pope/Douglas Solid Waste Management

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The following is a letter to the editor submitted to the newspaper by a reader. It does not necessarily reflect the views of the Echo Press. To submit a letter, send it to aedenloff@echopress.com or Echo Press, P.O. Box 549, Alexandria, MN 56308.
This is related to the action the council took on July 25 when it agreed to support a community fundraising initiative to improve parks and fields.
The project received a $200,000 loan through the city's Revolving Loan Fund Thursday night, Aug. 11.
The engineering agreement for the $8.15 million project amounted to $903,711 – a 17% increase from the cost determined in February.
Last month, the public safety department announced more state patrol troopers would patrol the Twin Cities following a chaotic Fourth of July weekend in Minneapolis that left several injured.
Primary elections typically have a significantly lower turnout than the November general election. Minnesota has had nation-leading voter turnout in its last three general elections, reaching nearly 80% in 2020.

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Several incumbent state legislators, particularly in the Senate, edged out competitors with more extreme views on COVID-19, election security and more.
The DFL- and GOP-endorsed candidates for governor easily won their respective primary contests on Tuesday night.
The Associated Press called the race for Schultz at around 10:35 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 9. With 73% of precincts reporting, Schultz had 54% of the vote, with candidate Doug Wardlow at 35%. Perennial candidate Sharon Anderson had around 12% of the vote.

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