Viewpoints

Mon
24
Mar

Time to become Mr. Clean

As my sister-in-law handed over her cleaning supplies, I felt as if I had inherited Brooks Robinson’s mitt. I held the tools of a master, and couldn’t have felt less worthy.

Mon
24
Mar

New gift tax sparks questions for taxpayers

As part of a campaign to educate taxpayers on confusing, challenging and emerging tax issues, the Minnesota Society of Certified Public Accountants offers important reminders related to Minnesota’s new state gift tax.
The new tax, effective July 1, 2013, and included in 2013 tax filings, collects 10 percent of a taxpayer’s cumulative lifetime gifting exceeding $1 million. Minnesota is only the second state in the country to enact a state gift tax.

Thu
20
Mar

Spring Cleaning: recycling, donating, and composting

It’s that time of year again, cabin fever is setting in and residents are getting the ‘spring cleaning’ itch. If you have the ‘throw it out’ mentality, please, instead, rethink possible ways to reuse or recycle unwanted items. Beside curbside recycling, drop-off recycling is an option for paper, metal, glass, plastic and other products at the Environmental Center in Woodbury, 4039 Cottage Grove Dr. Items accepted include:

Thu
20
Mar

Keeping an eye on water

Low White Bear Lake water levels and low groundwater volume have alerted local residents that one of our most precious resources needs watching.

Thu
20
Mar

Beware of tax-related ID theft, other scams

Whether you’re expecting a refund or owe money to Uncle Sam, tax season marks a good time to become familiar with tax-related identity theft and other scams. The U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration estimates 1.6 million Americans were victims of such theft in the first six months of 2013, an increase from 1.2 million in all of 2012.
Don’t let this happen to you. Be on alert for these common scams:

Thu
20
Mar

Water, water everywhere, but not a drip in the sink

The Land of 10,000 Lakes actually contains more than 12,000 lakes and 92,000 miles of streams and rivers. In addition, Minnesota boasts an abundance of ground water resources.
Fresh water supplies such as these are essential to our quality of life in many ways. Water is a necessity for human health as well as the health of crops, livestock and other living organisms. Water is also required to produce energy and manufacture countless products. Although freshwater is plentiful in Minnesota, it is not limitless. Conservation efforts today will help ensure a future with abundant water resources.

Tue
18
Mar

Spring tips for official clean water

Spring is a challenging time for our lakes, rivers and wetlands.  Snowmelt and rain wash many pollutants into these water bodies.  Because the ground is still frozen, water cannot be absorbed or infiltrate the ground. Instead rain and melting snow act like a water hose, washing the landscape free of sand, salt and debris.

Mon
17
Mar

What Were They Thinking?

There is a column appearing in major newspapers entitled “News of the Weird.” The stories are about people who do amazingly stupid things which cause us to think, ‘what were they thinking?’ Often these stories involve lawsuits, crimes, lawyers and judges. Here are a few recent stories in the media that involve people in the judicial system.

Fri
14
Mar

Focus needs to be on families, businesses

Thu
13
Mar

Infrastructure, Springbrook Nature Center are priorities

As the 2014 Legislative Session convened Feb. 25, a main focus of this short session will be passing a bonding bill for much needed construction and repairs for our buildings, roads, and bridges. There are other issues at hand that I will also address, and I am confident about this legislative session.

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