Author

Max Nesterak

Max Nesterak

Max Nesterak is the deputy editor of the Reformer and reports on labor and housing. Most recently he was an associate producer for Minnesota Public Radio after a stint at NPR. He also co-founded the Behavioral Scientist and was a Fulbright Scholar to Berlin, Germany.

Longtime Twin Cities activist and journalist Mel Reeves has died at 64 after battle with COVID-19

By: - January 6, 2022

Mel Reeves, a prominent Twin Cities activist and community editor at the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder, died Thursday after being hospitalized with COVID-19. He was 64 years old. Reeves covered police brutality, labor and social justice issues for the Spokesman-Recorder, the oldest Black-owned business in Minnesota, off and on for nearly three decades. “Mel was a great […]

Minneapolis mayor plans to address violence through boosted enforcement, officer recruitment

By: - January 5, 2022

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey and incoming Interim Police Chief Amelia Huffman say they’re increasing enforcement and focusing on recruiting new police officers to address the high rates of gun violence and armed robberies that have gripped the city for more than 18 months. At a news conference Wednesday, Frey called the surge in homicides, shootings, […]

Reformer Radio, rent control and zoning issues: 2021 in review

By: - December 30, 2021

This year was both incredibly challenging and rewarding. I started a podcast that brought our reporting to your ears. I helped cover two criminal trials of police officers and the issues at the center of a critical, off-year election for the Twin Cities and the state. And I continued digging into housing and labor issues […]

Minneapolis pushes back date for employees to return to office to Feb. 14

By: - December 28, 2021

Minneapolis city employees found out on Tuesday they will be able to work from home until Feb. 14, about a month longer than expected. The delay comes after some city workers voiced concerns about being required to return to the office as the highly contagious omicron variant drives up COVID-19 cases across the country. City […]

Twin Cities donors gave 15 people $1,000 a month in yearlong guaranteed income experiment

By: - December 23, 2021

It had been years since Pamela Bidear had a regular income when she began receiving $1,000 a month in October 2020. Bidear fled her native Cameroon in 2017 amid political turmoil that left her husband dead. She traveled to Nigeria, Ecuador, Mexico, California and Texas before finding refuge in a shelter for asylum seekers in […]

Minneapolis city workers must return to office next month while council will continue meeting remotely

By: - December 22, 2021

Hundreds of Minneapolis city employees will be required to return to the office part-time beginning Jan. 10, even as the city remains under a state of emergency because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the city council plans to meet remotely through at least mid-February. The move has angered some workers, who say the risks of […]

Gov. Tim Walz and family test positive for COVID-19

By: - December 21, 2021

Gov. Tim Walz announced Tuesday that he and his wife, Gwen, tested positive for COVID-19 on Monday following a positive test result from their teenage son. “Thankfully, my son has mild symptoms and Gwen and I have no symptoms,” Walz wrote in a statement. “My son is vaccinated, and Gwen and I are vaccinated and […]

Minneapolis rent control advocates call for 3% annual cap with inflation considerations

By: - December 20, 2021

Campaign leaders of the successful rent control ballot initiative in Minneapolis say they want the city council to pass a policy similar to the stringent one St. Paul voters approved in November: a 3% cap on annual increases on all properties throughout the city. In one significant divergence from St. Paul, however, leaders of the […]

Rural Minnesota hit hard by high cost of propane

By: - December 9, 2021

PINE COUNTY — The cost of propane hasn’t been this high in nearly a decade, up more than 60% from last year alone, forcing consumers to spend hundreds of dollars more this winter to heat their homes. “I remember when the prices were good, and you could buy a lot and just have it,” said […]

Brooklyn Center passes $1.3 million in new public safety initiatives, freezes 3 police vacancies

By: - December 7, 2021

After three hours of heated debate occasionally interrupted by Zoom bombers and questions from city council members on Robert’s Rules of Order, Brooklyn Center leaders unanimously approved a budget on Monday that freezes three vacant police officer positions to help pay for $1.3 million in new public safety initiatives. The vote comes just 36 hours […]

Second U.S. case of omicron detected in Minnesota

By: - December 2, 2021

The second U.S. case of the omicron variant of COVID-19 was reported in Minnesota on Thursday, leading the governor to ask residents to renew their efforts to slow the spread. “This news is concerning, but it is not a surprise,” Gov. Tim Walz said in a statement. “Minnesotans know what to do to keep each […]

Brooklyn Center leaders divided over police budget as trial of former officer Kim Potter begins

By: - November 30, 2021

Around midnight on the night before the start of the manslaughter trial of former police officer Kim Potter, Brooklyn Center city leaders found themselves at an impasse over their police department’s budget and how to fund the reforms they’d agreed to make nearly seven months previously. Mayor Mike Elliott proposed during a special city council […]