Rep. Peterson's Newsletter 8/14/2015

Sunset in Marshall

Dear Friends,

This week I visited the Moorhead Rotary Club at the historical Hjemkomst Center to update members on issues currently being debated in Congress. Afterwards, I was interviewed by Valley News Live and continued to meet with folks who attended the Rotary Club event. I also went to Alexandria to visit with the Minnesota Association of Realtors. My staff aides visited with the Detroit Lakes and Fergus Falls National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association chapters and attended a groundbreaking ceremony on a new housing project in Thief River Falls. This week marks the 80th anniversary of the Social Security Act, an important piece of legislation that continues to provide support to our nation’s seniors.



Congressman Collin C. Peterson
Minnesota 7th District

Moorhead Rotary Club

On Tuesday I traveled to the Hjemkomst Interpretive Center and spoke to the Moorhead Rotary Club to update members on what is going on in Congress. Issues discussed ranged from the grid-lock in Congress, how to deal with the Water of the United States rule, transportation funding, and Farm Bill implementation. It was great to see so many Rotary Club members come out and participate in this event.

Click here to view coverage of the event by KVRR in Fargo-Moorhead.

Valley News Live

Following the Moorhead Rotary Club event, I answered questions from Chris Berg with 6:30 Point of View on Valley News Live. Click here to view the full interview.

National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association

On Monday, staff aide Allison Myhre met with the Fergus Falls chapter of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE), and on Wednesday, met with the Detroit Lakes NARFE chapter. At both meetings the group discussed issues related to federal retirement benefits, U.S. Postal Service postal reform legislation, federal workforce issues, and the Office of Personnel Management data breach. I support our public employees and believe they are a group of dedicated women and men who provide important services to people throughout our country. It's important that we treat them fairly so we can recruit and retain a top-quality workforce that Americans need.

Housing Groundbreaking Ceremony

Photo credit to the Thief River Falls Times

My staff aide Wally Sparby attended a housing groundbreaking ceremony in Thief River Falls on Friday. With growing job opportunities, Western Minnesota has a greater need for additional housing and infrastructure in order to foster economic growth in local businesses.

Minnesota Realtors

On Wednesday, I visited with the Minnesota Association of Realtors in Alexandria to talk about current issues facing the housing industry including tax policies and agriculture property issues. The EPA’s Waters of the U.S. rule continues to create confusion for homebuilders, developers and the entire housing industry. At a time when we need to be building more homes in the 7th District, this sweeping rule will have significant adverse effects on real estate development, and I will continue to fight against regulations that just don’t make sense for Minnesotans.

Support for Native American Schools

This week the Minnesota Congressional delegation sent a letter to the Department of Interior in support of the Bug-O-Nay-Ge-Shig high school, which serves students from the Leech Lake area. The school has fallen into severe disrepair over the years, and it is our hope that the Department of Interior will take these considerations into effect and address the needs of this school so that the students of Leech Lake can have access to the same standards of education that we find throughout Minnesota. I commend Representative John Kline for leading this effort, and I hope we can exact some change in this matter.

Social Security’s 80th Anniversary

As Social Security celebrates its 80th anniversary today, this is a good time to note the program’s accomplishments while finding common ground on ways to strengthen this program for the future.

For 80 years, Social Security has protected the lives of our nation's senior citizens and provided an economic lifeline to millions of workers. Social Security provides benefits to more than 60 million people, 150,000 of whom reside in Minnesota’s 7th Congressional District. Today a majority of seniors receive over half their retirement income from Social Security. It provides 90 percent or more of retirement income for almost one-third of retired beneficiaries.

I strongly oppose any potential efforts in Congress to privatize or turn Social Security into a voucher program. I will continue to fight to protect those benefits for retirees and work to ensure that the program is there for future generations.

Two 7th District Music Icons Pass Away
Jimmy Jenson

I was saddened to learn about the passing of Jimmy Jenson, better known as the “Singing Swede.” Jimmy played music for audiences for more than 60 years and started out in the Fargo-Moorhead area. He began in the late 1940s with the “Minnesota Woodchoppers” and went on to record Scandinavian humor in seven albums. He purchased a supper club in Alexandria in the 1960s where he made his home. In 2005, Jimmy was inducted into the “Mid-America Hall of Fame.” He passed away at the age of 84.

Lynn Anderson

Grammy Award-winning female country singer Lynn “Rose Garden” Anderson passed away on July 31, 2015 at the age of 67. Anderson was born in Grand Forks, ND in 1947. Lynn performed at the very first WE Fest in 1983, the largest country music and camping festival on the North American continent held in Detroit Lakes, MN. The festival draws around 50,000 concert-goers a year.

Lynn got her start performing on the “Lawrence Welk Show”. Her weekly song spots on that variety show gave her the publicity necessary for a Columbia Record contract and her signature song “I Never Promised You a Rose Garden” in 1971. 

Lynn’s mother Liz, also a female country music star and award-winning songwriter, hailed from Roseau, MN.

Discovering the 7th

Located near MN Highways 23 and 67 in Granite Falls, the Yellow Medicine County Historical Society and Museum came about after the local Historical Society gathered artifacts for a pioneer display in 1949. In 1967, a new building was built for the museum along the Minnesota River. Today, visitors can see artifacts and tools used in Yellow Medicine County including farm tools, bones of an ancient bison, and military uniforms and guns from WWI.

This Week in American History

On August 10th, 1846, the Smithsonian Institute, a group of museums and research centers administered by the U.S. Government in Washington, D.C., was created. In accordance to a will by an English scientist named James Smithson, more than $500,000 of his wealth was used to create a museum, library, and a program of research after President James Polk signed Congressional legislation to do so. Today, the Smithsonian is composed of 19 museums and galleries including the National Zoo and the National Portrait Gallery. Visitors who plan to travel to Washington, D.C. can click here to find out more information.

Anna Norgard (FERGUS FALLS)
2015 Congressional Art Competition