Author

Christopher Ingraham

Christopher Ingraham

Christopher Ingraham covers greater Minnesota and reports on data-driven stories across the state. He's the author of the book "If You Lived Here You'd Be Home By Now," about his family's journey from the Baltimore suburbs to rural northwest Minnesota. He was previously a data reporter for the Washington Post.

Minnesota farmers received $1.5 billion in federal payments in 2021

By: - February 6, 2023

If the USDA subsidies that went to farmers in Marshall County, Minn., were distributed equally to the entire population there in 2021, every man, woman and child would have received a check for $6,000.  Instead, the $54 million in subsidy payments were divvied up among the county’s roughly 1,000 farmers, with the largest receiving hundreds […]

Bill would sharply curtail turtle harvesting for profit

By: - February 1, 2023

Minnesota is one of just a handful of states allowing wild turtles to be harvested, sold and exported for profit.  But that could change this year if the DFL-controlled Legislature succeeds in passing a total ban on the practice that’s been decades in the making.  “Turtles are one of the most vulnerable species in our […]

Start low and go… fast? How to tax weed in Minnesota

By: - January 30, 2023

Last week’s budget-palooza in St. Paul revealed a small but potentially significant rift between Gov. Walz and the DFL-controlled legislature on the topic of marijuana policy. In announcing their legalization bill, DFL legislators proposed taxing cannabis sales at 8% on top of the existing state sales tax of 6.5% (the sales tax is higher in […]

Seven facts about abortion in Minnesota

By: - January 25, 2023

This week the state Senate plans to take up a bill that will codify stronger protections for abortion and other reproductive health care rights into state law. The bill has already passed the House, and is considered a top legislative priority for the new DFL trifecta in St. Paul. Abortion rights are currently protected here […]

What Minnesota can learn from legalization in other states

By: - January 19, 2023

The marijuana bill making its way through the Legislature is in many ways a uniquely Minnesotan approach to legalization. But the experience of other states looms large in the debate, with both supporters and opponents citing outcomes elsewhere as evidence in favor of their position. With nearly a decade of legal weed experience behind them, […]

Minnesota’s snowmobile season off to an unusually lethal start

By: - January 11, 2023

At least six people have died in Minnesota snowmobile accidents in the first two weekends of 2023, already tying the number of people killed in such incidents across the entire 2021-2022 winter season.  The unusual cluster of fatalities began on the evening of December 31, when a 52-year-old Zimmerman man died after rolling his sled […]

CEO pay ratios in Minnesota: What the latest data show

By: - January 10, 2023

CEOs at Minnesota’s biggest public companies — including Target, Best Buy and 3M — continue to earn hundreds of times more than their employees, according to pay ratio data filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. As in 2020, when the Reformer last analyzed these figures, retailer Target shows the largest pay disparity, with CEO […]

DFL marijuana bill a Minnesotan twist on legalization

By: - January 6, 2023

This week DFL lawmakers rolled out the 243-page marijuana legalization bill they hope to pass in the current legislative term.  The measure shares many similarities with legalization frameworks already in place in the 21 other states that have allowed recreational marijuana use since the first measures passed in Colorado and Washington more than a decade […]

A cancerous year

By: - December 27, 2022

I was extremely excited to start working at the Reformer this summer. A small independent newsroom, punching above its weight, dedicated to telling stories others wouldn’t? Sign me up! Then, I got cancer.  It’s fine, all things considered. It’s a type of lymphoma that’s highly curable, and I’m in the middle of chemotherapy that will […]

Analysis: What marijuana regulators could learn from Minnesota’s municipal liquor stores

By: - December 20, 2022

Last week the State Auditor’s office released its annual report on the finances of Minnesota’s 212 municipal liquor operations. The local government-run establishments, which include both bars and liquor stores, made $37 million in profits in 2021 on a record $424 million in sales. Close to two-thirds of those profits — $23.1 million in total […]

Cook County festival aims to capitalize on its world-class dark skies

By: - December 9, 2022

Cook County, Minnesota is holding its annual Dark Sky Festival this weekend. The county boasts the darkest night skies in Minnesota and indeed the entire eastern U.S. In 2020, the nearby Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness was designated an International Dark Sky Sanctuary by the International Dark-Sky Association. Cook County wants to capitalize on that […]

MN children’s hospitals facing severe bed shortage, pediatricians warn

By: - November 22, 2022

There are just two pediatric intensive care beds available in the entire state of Minnesota, per the latest data from the Department of Health.  The other 142 beds are occupied mostly by children suffering from a variety of respiratory ailments, including RSV (respiratory syncytial virus) and influenza. Pediatricians are warning that pressure on the childrens’ […]