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5 things to know today: In-person classes, Voting turnout, Wanted man, Local races, Diversion Project

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Fargo Public Schools COVID-19 Instructional Plan Committee meeting screenshot taken on Nov. 2.

1. With plans for more in-person classes, Fargo school officials ask for city, state help to slow virus spread

Members of the committee that decides what Fargo's K-12 instruction should look like during the COVID-19 pandemic set forth a timeline Monday, Nov. 2, to phase in more in-person learning while saying that state and city officials are not doing enough to prevent the virus' rapid spread through the community.

Superintendent Rupak Gandhi said keeping students in face-to-face classes should be a priority for government officials, and for the community. If positive cases inside schools begin mirroring county-wide statistics, then buildings will have to close and students will have to return to distance learning.

“I wish we had that support at city and state levels because it should be a priority,” said Gandhi, who sits on the Fargo Public Schools COVID-19 Instructional Plan Committee. “I feel that schools are not valued in our community. Even if schools were to go distant, our community around us continues to be open, allowing people to go out. I would openly advocate that we try to keep schools open by shutting down everything in our community.”

Read more from The Forum's C.S. Hagen

2. High early voting turnout could ease pressure on poll sites in Cass, Clay counties


Voters line up to cast their ballots on Monday, Nov. 2, at the Clay County Courthouse in Moorhead. David Samson / The Forum

Voters were lined up outside of the door of the Clay County Courthouse on Monday, Nov. 2, to cast ballots in the Nov. 3 general election, which is drawing attention for the number of people voting early.

Those voting in Moorhead on Monday appeared to be doing so under a process that allows people to apply for an absentee ballot, fill it out, and submit it to election officials at the courthouse all in one visit.

Clay County Auditor-Treasurer Lori Johnson said that about 1,954 absentee ballots had been submitted in that way as of Monday afternoon.

Read more from The Forum's Dave Olson

3. Fargo police seek help in finding man wanted for attempted murder

Nathanael Benton

Fargo police are asking for the public's help in locating Nathanael Ray Benton, 23, Fargo, who was charged Monday, Nov. 2, with attempted murder for allegedly shooting someone in the head.


According to Fargo police:

An arrest warrant was issued for Benton on Monday after he was charged in Cass County District Court with one count of attempted murder.

Benton is accused in a court complaint of shooting an individual in the head with a firearm on or about Sunday, Nov. 1.

Police said they have reason to believe Benton is armed and poses a threat to public safety.

Read more

4. McFeely: Five other interesting races to watch on Election Day

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U.S. Rep Collin Peterson, left, and former Minnesota lieutenant governor Michelle Fischbach. (Submitted photos)

It's all about the presidential race to most Americans. As it should be. Whether the United States chooses President Donald Trump or challenger Joe Biden will determine much about our future.


But the top of the ticket isn't the only game in town this Election Day.

Here are five interesting local races on which to keep an eye Tuesday, Nov. 3.

Read more from Forum columnist Mike McFeely

5. Come flood or drought, Fargo could be well protected within matter of years

The scale model of the Red River control structure includes gates that will control the flow of water into the Fargo-Moorhead diversion channel during extreme floods. Photo courtesy of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

With the Fargo-Moorhead Area Diversion project finally receiving certainty after a "monumental" settlement with upstream opponents last week, Fargo City Commissioners also approved funding Monday night, Nov. 2, for a project on the other end of the spectrum.

The commission OK'd its local share of $2.5 million needed for a partnership with the state to continue planning and to possibly start construction next year of the Red River Valley Water Supply Project in case of a drought.

Commissioners also heard more details about the settlement that will end lawsuits and allow final permits for the estimated $2.7 billion flood diversion project.


Read more from The Forum's Barry Amundson

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