Michelle Griffith

Michelle Griffith

Michelle Griffith covers Minnesota politics and policy for the Reformer, with a focus on marginalized communities. Most recently she was a reporter with The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead in North Dakota where she covered state and local government and Indigenous issues.

Walz’s supreme court pick says he will recuse himself from cases involving former clients

By: - August 24, 2023

Karl Procaccini, Gov. Tim Walz’s former general counsel and appointee to the Minnesota Supreme Court, said he will recuse himself from cases that involve his former clients, which include PolyMet, 3M and Flint Hills Resources — a subsidiary of Koch Industries.  “Every judge needs to take that responsibility seriously,” Procaccini said during a Wednesday news […]

Less than half of Minnesota students meet or exceed grade level standards in reading, math

By: - August 24, 2023

Less than half of Minnesota students met or exceeded grade level standards in reading and math — proof that students are still struggling from COVID-19 pandemic learning loss that caused scores to plummet, according to the state. The 2023 state testing scores released Thursday by the Minnesota Department of Education show test scores are still […]

Walz appoints first Black chief justice, former general counsel to Supreme Court

By: - August 23, 2023

Gov. Tim Walz on Wednesday announced that Justice Natalie Hudson will be the next chief justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court, making her the first person of color to serve in the position. Hudson, who is currently a Supreme Court associate justice, will be elevated to the role after current Chief Justice Lorie Gildea retires […]

Former Senate minority leader to receive $250K salary in new U of M role

By: - August 23, 2023

Former Senate Minority Leader Melisa López Franzen will earn $250,000 per year in her new position as the University of Minnesota’s chief lobbyist at the State Capitol — more than the governor and lieutenant governor combined. This is a considerable raise from her legislative salary. In 2022, she made up to $67,550 as the Senate minority […]

Finstad fails to meet 2022 financial disclosure deadline

By: - August 17, 2023

U.S. Rep. Brad Finstad of Minnesota’s 1st Congressional District is four days past the deadline to file his 2022 financial disclosure report to the House Clerk. The southern Minnesota Republican back in May requested a 90-day extension to file his 2022 financial disclosure, and he was granted a new due date of Aug. 13, according […]

U of M hires former Senate minority leader as chief lobbyist

By: - August 16, 2023

The University of Minnesota on Wednesday announced it has hired former Senate Minority Leader Melisa López Franzen as its next chief lobbyist at the State Capitol.  Beginning Aug. 28, López Franzen will be the U’s executive director of government and community relations, where she will oversee lobbying efforts for all five of the U’s campuses […]

Minnesota moves to close case against plasma company for gender identity discrimination

By: - August 15, 2023

The Minnesota Department of Human Rights on Tuesday announced that CSL Plasma had implemented changes to prevent plasma-donating Minnesotans from being turned away because of their gender identity.  The department said it has filed a joint motion with the company to close the case because CSL Plasma has fulfilled the requirements laid out in a […]

Claims for 2021 property tax refunds due Aug. 15

By: - August 11, 2023

Minnesota homeowners and renters have four days to file their 2021 property tax refund claim.  Find out if you qualify for a property tax refund here.  Track your refund here.  The 2021 refund must be filed with the Minnesota Department of Revenue by Aug. 15. The 2022 refund is due in August, 2024. The average […]

Police association criticizes Walz for meeting with Ricky Cobb’s family

By: - August 10, 2023

The Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association sent a letter to Gov. Tim Walz, objecting to the governor’s meeting with the family of Ricky Cobb II — the man shot multiple times by a State Patrol trooper after being pulled over on I-94 in north Minneapolis. Walz met with Cobb’s family on Wednesday — about […]

Legislature creates state council for LGBTQ Minnesotans

By: - August 9, 2023

The Minnesota Legislature this year created a state council to implement “economic, social, legal and political equality” for LGBTQ residents. The new Council on LGBTQIA2S+ — lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and/or questioning, intersex, asexual, two-spirit, and more — Minnesotans will advise the governor and Legislature on bills, act as a liaison between advocacy organizations […]

Wolgamott charged with DWI: ‘I do not have an alcohol use disorder’

By: - August 7, 2023

Rep. Dan Wolgamott, DFL-St. Cloud, was charged with two DWI misdemeanors on Monday. On July 7, Wolgamott was arrested by the Minnesota State Patrol on suspicion of DWI in Kanabec County — about 50 miles northeast of St. Cloud. According to a citation issued Monday, Wolgamott’s blood alcohol concentration was .09 — above the state’s […]

Minnesota begins building new children-focused agency

By: - August 7, 2023

Minnesota is one month into a daunting task: Creating a new, 1,000-employee state agency centered on the well-being of children and families. The Legislature this year created the Department of Children, Youth and Families, which will oversee a number of children-focused state programs that have resided in other agencies, including the Departments of Human Services, […]