Kristina Medina is an Asst. Professor at St. Olaf and a native of Puerto Rico. She talked with Jeff Johnson this morning. Her parents remain on the island, while they’re okay, she has mounted an effort to get help to so many others who are not. Water is a major issue. She said there’s no electricity and, “right now you cannot find gas tanks to cook, it’s really hard to find wood because that’s not really part of the culture there to cook with wood”. Supplies are not being delivered, which Medina, says the why is still not being answered. Presidential action had to be taken to open all the ports for foreign
countries due to the Jones Act which means, “all the business that is done is those ports has to be through the U.S., which obviously, has become a huge issue right now because when you have a problem with access to basic needs and the airports are closed all you have is a port and it’s an island so you have ports everywhere so, in theory, that should be something that helps right now”. Trump opened the ports for 10 days. Medina says that’s okay but it’s not long enough. Medical aid is paramount at this time. With no real communication, it’s difficult to get accurate information. She said, “so yesterday I saw a video of truck drivers actually getting there and they were sent back home and they said just leave your name on a list and we’re going to be contacting you. But how are they going to contact them?”. Another version involves a trucking union. Medina says contacts on the island tell her there’s no communication with the government to those in areas further outside of San Juan. She said, “we want to think that people would react based on humanity and not politics but after all, things don’t change that much because of a crisis, so you’re working with the existing structure”. It will take years to help the island. Right now you can drop off goods to the Rose House at 1104 1st. St. W near St. Olaf. Leave them at the front door with a note that says Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico help
NAFRS still ponders taxing district
Whether NAFRS becomes a taxing district has been discussed off and on since the Joint Powers agreement was signed. Chair Glen Castore said that the MN Fire Chiefs association will reintroduce a bill to the Legislature. Castore explains that it provides the framework for any constituency to for a taxing district for fire/emergency services. Much like a school district. Castore said there is a growing interest to form taxing districts in rural areas due to funding and personnel. Whether NAFRS should choose to follow that path is still being debated.
Snapchat Snapcodes for Sidewalk Poetry
The City of Northfield, in cooperation with the Arts and Culture Commission has launched the Sidewalk Poetry Snapchat Snapcode app. Signs have been placed throughout Northfield where current sidewalk poetry exists. Once scanned through Snapchat, these Snapcodes, will link you to the Sidewalk Poetry application. You’ll then be able to navigate to poem locations, view images, and listen to recordings. Non-Snapchat users can also access the Sidewalk Poetry app and I’ll have a link from kymnradio.net at noon today. Press Release Snapcode Poetry. Click on that link