The Free Press, Mankato, MN


July 12, 2014

Our View; Boaters need to stop invasive species

Thumbs down to boaters in Minnesota who do not take proper care of their boats after landing to rid them of the risk of spreading invasive species to all of Minnesota lakes.

A recent Department of Natural Resources report showed some 26 percent of all boaters were not in compliance with laws designed to stop the spread of things like zebra mussels.

The DNR has so far this year issued 169 tickets and 375 warnings to boaters who were not complying with laws. Boaters are failing to pull their boat plugs and keep them out while transporting their boat. The DNR notes this is a common violation and the violation rate is “way too high,” according to DNR enforcement officer Captain Greg Salo in a report in the Star Tribune.

The spread of zebra mussels has now gone as far one of the pristine lakes in the Detroit Lakes area.

Complying with the law is a simple task. The law requires people to clean off their boats after landing, draining live wells or other water storage and leaving the plugs out. It’s not a lot of work. It will help preserve the beauty of our lakes in Minnesota and keep them clean and clear for everyone to enjoy.

Continued gridlock is disappointing

Thumbs down to the continued gridlock on immigration reform.

The latest consequences of failing to deliver comprehensive immigration reform have been the tens of thousands of unaccompanied children coming to the country from central America. With inadequate staffing and lack of clear rules or courts to adjudicate cases, the administration is scrambling to deal with the crisis through emergency funding requests and executive policy decisions.

There had been hope of real immigration reform this year, but that hope died when congressional Republicans who were moving toward a reform package fled from any reform talk after some GOP primary voters punished reform-advocates.

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