Plexiglass kept the candidate physically apart, leaving the sparring to a verbal back-and-forth at Monday's City of Owatonna candidate forum at the Owatonna Country Club. The Owatonna Area Chamber of Commerce and Tourism (OACCT), a co-host for the weekly event, reports "one topic ruffled some feathers and it was over transparency."

In this week's edition of the Tuesday Talk e-newsletter, chamber president Brad Meier writes, "(Owatonna City Council) Challenger Matt Durand focused many of his answers to the forum questions around the topic of community input and process transparency, something incumbents Doug Voss and Kevin Raney took exception with."

"Raney, who is unopposed in this election and Voss who is being challenged by Durand both felt the public is able to get the information on anything they are working on through the city website and public meetings. Durand countered that most read or hear about city decisions after they've taken place and he wants to promote more community engagement."

You can watch the entire forum through OwatonnaLive.com, who provides a live stream to each forum on Monday's at 12 pm through November 2, the day before the election. The forums are also co-hosted by the Owatonna Rotary and Owatonna People's Press.

Meier states, "Mayoral incumbent Tom Kuntz and his opponent Ethan Cords agreed on many of the questions, both touting economic development as a strength for them in this role. Cords commented that people want the younger generation to get involved and he's here to get involved...Kuntz highlighted his experience, having served as mayor for 16 years..."

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In other news from Tuesday Talk, "Owatonna is reporting huge industrial growth (for 2020)." The full story indicates the surge is "Fueled by massive projects like the Costco Depot, Minimizer, Daikin, and Rise Modular..." Investments have already surpassed 2019's total, and 2020 "is on track for one of the biggest years in recent memory."