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Letters to the Editor kr

New president

It will not be long before Biden backers will realize that “unity” has a new definition: agreeing with what  Biden believes.

His immediate signing of 20-plus executive orders is just the beginning.

I wonder what the new definition of “freedom” will be.

Pat Wallace, Aitkin

Line 3 support

A $2.6 billion project means a lot to businesses in Northern Minnesota. Now that the Line 3 Replacement Project has started, and thousands are going to work, we are already seeing the significant effect.

The project itself will support 4,200 good-paying union jobs. Even more importantly, these workers bring a need for other goods that allows companies to hire and pay employees who support them at restaurants, hotels and stores along the replacement route.

I see this everyday as I enjoy the commute between Hill City and Grand Rapids for my work. I know the stream of cars means that our local restaurants can bring back more servers and cooks. It means that the gas stations and convenience stores in our small towns can extend their hours of operation to serve the hard-working pipeliners and the many, many support jobs that come along with them.

It means that a local restaurant that was closed, completely closed, for almost three months in 2020, can find new ways to create revenue and jobs for this business. A local bar and restaurant in Hill City started a new food truck to serve the guys on the job. While this may seem simple to someone living in the metro, food trucks in rural towns of less than 500 residents, is not a common theme.

2020 has challenged us all to look at the emotional, physical and financial setbacks and try to find new resources to support our businesses and communities. This project means an opportunity for rural Minnesotans to lift themselves back up and push forward through this crisis.

There are resorts and hotels that would normally be quiet this time of year that are now filling up. After a slower than usual year for tourism, this really means something.

And the money spent in one place doesn’t just stay there. It continues to be spent and reinvested in the community.

Let’s continue to support this project as it brings real, positive change to Northern Minnesota. It took us a long time to get here but Line 3 is deserving of our support – even more now that we can see how it can lift up our community and economy.

Tamara Lowney, president and CEO Itasca Economic Development Corp., Grand Rapids

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