The city of Duluth has struggled this year to fill openings on its police force. "This is the first time I can remember that we've come to the end of the year where we haven't been in a hiring freeze and where we didn't have enough candidates that we wanted to hire," said Duluth Police Chief Mike Tusken. He had authorization to bring four more officers onboard than the six he brought to the force this year, but Tusken said the pool of applicants simply wasn't strong enough.
Back when Rice Lake was a township rather than a city, local politics rarely attracted much attention, but Tuesday's election revealed an active and engaged local electorate, as three candidates vied for two city council seats. "Back when we were a township, we were lucky if we got 30 people to vote (for township supervisor seats). Now, we're getting 2,100 to 2,300 (votes in a city council race)," said John Werner, mayor of the young city.