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 promises thorough investigation of State Patrol’s fatal shooting of Ricky Cobb

By: - August 2, 2023

Gov. Tim Walz on Wednesday made his first public comments regarding a State Patrol officer shooting and killing Ricky Cobb II during a traffic stop in Minneapolis on Monday. Walz released a statement on social media, saying that he offered his condolences to Cobb’s mother. “I assured her that a swift, thorough investigation has already […]

Corporate lobby group announces former House speaker as next CEO

By: - August 2, 2023

The Minnesota Business Partnership — a lobbying group representing the state’s largest corporations — announced Wednesday that former Republican House Speaker Kurt Zellers will be its next CEO. Zellers, who served as House speaker in 2011 to 2012, will assume his new role on Sept. 1. He will replace current CEO Charlie Weaver, who before […]

Minnesota implements new Native American history requirement for K-12 teachers

By: - August 1, 2023

Minnesota teachers renewing their license must now undergo training about Native American history and culture. The Legislature passed a law this year requiring training for K-12 teachers about the “cultural heritage and contemporary contributions of American Indians, with particular emphasis on Minnesota Tribal Nations,” in order to renew their license. The requirement goes into effect […]

The Minnesota Legislature made historic investments in child care. It’s not enough.

By: - July 27, 2023

Gov. Tim Walz and Democratic lawmakers have been pushing an ambitious goal since taking control of state government last year— make Minnesota the best state in which to raise children.  Lawmakers argue their investments in early learning and child care this past legislative session did just that. “This budget is about making Minnesota the best […]

Walz highlights teacher shortage on statewide workforce tour

By: - July 21, 2023

Gov. Tim Walz on Wednesday asked a group of Savage 4th graders attending summer school a question: “How many of you think you’d like to be teachers someday?” No one raised their hands. “Awe, c’mon — it’s so fun!” Walz said. A few students tentatively put their hands in the air. The unenthusiastic response was […]

Wolgamott on suspected DWI: ‘I take full responsibility for my actions’

By: - July 20, 2023

Rep. Dan Wolgamott, DFL-St. Cloud, on Thursday apologized for his behavior and arrest on suspicion of driving while impaired on July 7. In a statement to the Reformer, Wolgamott said he takes “full responsibility for my actions, and I ask for your forgiveness.” “I wholeheartedly apologize to my family, my friends, my colleagues, and my […]

Walz announces departure of state’s longest-serving budget commissioner

By: - July 12, 2023

Gov. Tim Walz on Wednesday announced that Minnesota Management and Budget Commissioner Jim Schowalter is stepping down effective Aug. 14.  In a statement, Schowalter said he would “start a new chapter” after finishing this year’s budget cycle, which saw a record $17.5 billion surplus. “I couldn’t imagine a more important role or time to serve […]

Here’s what you need to know about your rebate check, other credits from the Legislature

By: - July 11, 2023

The Legislature passed multiple measures this year to give money back to Minnesotans, the first of which is set to go out in a few months. The Department of Revenue provided an update this week with some key details. Lawmakers passed a broad tax rebate for most filers; a new child tax credit and expanded […]

Minnesota DFL legislator arrested on suspicion of DWI

By: - July 10, 2023

Rep. Dan Wolgamott, DFL-St. Cloud, was arrested by the Minnesota State Patrol on Friday for suspicion of driving while impaired in Kanabec County — about 85 miles north of St. Paul. Wolgamott, who is serving his third term in the House, was booked into the Kanabec County Jail on suspicion of fourth-degree DWI.  Kanabec County […]

Legislature reduces misdemeanor sentence by 1 day, with big ramifications for some immigrants

By: - July 3, 2023

The Minnesota Legislature passed a new law that reduces the maximum sentence for a gross misdemeanor from one year to 364 days in prison — a change that seems tiny but will greatly impact the lives of some immigrants. The one-day change could be the difference between an immigrant in Minnesota paying a fine and […]

Light rail audit: Met Council failed to enforce construction contracts, costing millions

By: - June 28, 2023

The Metropolitan Council bungled oversight of the construction of the Southwest Light Rail by failing to enforce its agreements with its contractors, adding hundreds of millions of dollars to the project’s cost and causing further delays, according to a report by the Office of the Legislative Auditor released Wednesday. The Southwest Light Rail line so […]

Minnesota to receive over $650 million to expand broadband access

By: - June 26, 2023

Minnesota will receive over $650 million to expand access to broadband thanks to the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Act, which should make a major dent in Minnesota’s effort to provide high-speed internet to all Minnesotans who want it. The state has set a goal of universal access to high-speed internet by 2026. The allocation from the […]