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The Daily 5: Oranges in Mantorville, West Concord pool, Wheel of Fortune, Rochester Public Schools budget, police reform

A rundown of the morning's headlines.

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Oranges in Mantorville? PPP fraud linked to local loan

Mantorville is known for a lot of things -- its history as a stagecoach stop, its haunted opera house and the famous Hubbell House restaurant.

However, the Dodge County community, population 1,197, is not known as a tropical paradise and certainly not as a place to grow oranges.

That’s why a Paycheck Protection Program, or PPP, loan to support an “Orange Grove” in the heart of the small Minnesota town has become a prime example of unidentified groups or entities using fake farms to collect hundreds of small loans.

Read the full story by Jeff Kiger and Nora Eckert here.

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West Concord raises nearly half a million to refurbish pool, park

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Glenda Andrews, center, the West Concord pool manager, paints the inside of the pool with the help of volunteers, from left, Donavan Dahlen, 18, Devon Henrichs, 19, Mary Devroy, and Lynn Haltvick, all of West Concord, Tuesday, May 25, 2021, in West Concord. Community members in West Concord have come together to raise nearly half a million dollars for upgrades to Memorial Park, including a new sports court, water slide and pool bath house. (Joe Ahlquist / jahlquist@postbulletin.com)

When West Concord kicked off a fundraiser to upgrade and refurbish the town's Memorial Park , many in the community might have been forgiven for shaking their heads in disbelief.

The project seemed a tad overly ambitious.

After all, raising nearly half a million dollars seemed like an incredible sum for a city of 780 or so people. More modest efforts, like funding a slide for the park pool, had sputtered in the past. This was a way more ambitious project. Would it fare any differently?

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Read the full story by Matthew Stolle here.



Red Wing native wins $20,700 on 'Wheel of Fortune'

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Red Wing native Chris Newman on Wheel of Fortune. The episode aired May 18. (Submitted photo)

Tuning into “Wheel of Fortune” on weeknights was a family tradition growing up for Chris Newman.

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“I don’t know how it happened, but we just started. Automatically at 6:30, it’s time to watch 'The Wheel,'” Newman said.

The 32-year-old Red Wing native, who moved to Hawthorne, Calif., eight years ago, spent those evenings with his family imagining himself up on the stage, spinning the giant wheel and guessing the letters to the puzzles. Even after he moved, he would call his mom if there was an interesting puzzle in the latest episode.

Read the full story by Erich Fisher here.


Today's weather


Pandemic shows some effects in Rochester Public School's upcoming budget

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Rochester Public Schools

Rochester Public Schools has received funding to help weather the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, but it's still facing a deficit due to rising expenses.

On Tuesday, the School Board reviewed the proposed budget for the 2021-22 year. It shows anticipated revenue of roughly $330 million, and anticipated expenditures of $430 million. However, most of that difference can be attributed to the district's building projects.

The district is anticipating a 1% increase in state aid. RPS Finance Director John Carlson clarified, however, that the district could receive as much as a 2% increase. The board is expected to review the budget again during its next meeting on June 1.

Read the full story by Jordan Shearer here.


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George Floyd's family lobbies Biden for U.S. police reform on anniversary of death

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Gianna Floyd, daughter of George Floyd, along with other family members and lawyers, raise fists and say his name while facing reporters at the White House following their meeting with President Joe Biden in Washington, U.S., May 25, 2021. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

A year after his killing sparked a national reckoning over U.S. racial injustice, George Floyd's relatives met on Tuesday with President Joe Biden at the White House and with lawmakers on Capitol Hill to urge passage of police reform legislation in their loved one's name.

Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man who died in handcuffs with his neck pinned to a Minneapolis street under a white police officer's knee, become the face of a national movement against police brutality and bias in the U.S. criminal justice system.

His dying words, "I can't breathe," have echoed as a slogan in street demonstrations that convulsed the United States and the world last summer in the midst of the coronavirus epidemic.

Read the full story here.


Andrew Link has been the Digital Managing Editor at the Post Bulletin since 2021. He first joined the PB as a photographer in 2015. Readers can reach Andrew at 507-281-7427 or alink@postbulletin.com.
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