Work & Money

Reformer Radio: Marathon v. the Teamsters

BY: - May 28, 2021

Workers at the oil refinery in St. Paul Park say the plant’s owner, Marathon, has put them on a path to catastrophe. “Safety’s kinda went on the backburner.… Especially now that big corporation Marathon owns us. It’s pretty much corporate greed over safety,” said Matt Foss, a fire mechanic and rescue squad lieutenant who’s worked […]

Poor People’s Campaign push for ‘Third Reconstruction’ in America

BY: - May 21, 2021

The Rev. Dr. William Barber and Democratic members of Congress unveiled a resolution Wednesday calling for a “Third Reconstruction” to tackle poverty and the effects of low wages across the country. “This is the real question — what is the cost of inequality,” Barber said at a Washington news conference. The resolution aims to achieve […]

Minnesota’s unemployment rate fell to 4.1% in April

BY: - May 20, 2021

Minnesota’s unemployment rate was 4.1% in April, down slightly from 4.2% in March as more Minnesotans returned to the workforce. People of color are still most affected by the economic downturn, with about 8.9% of Black workers and 7.7% of Latino workers unemployed last month based on 12-month moving averages. The unemployment rate for white […]

Homeless students slipping through the cracks during the pandemic, congressional panel told

BY: - May 20, 2021

WASHINGTON — Witnesses before a U.S. House panel on Wednesday advised lawmakers on how federal relief aid can help bridge educational gaps among children who are homeless and in foster care during the pandemic. “While housing is critical, housing alone does not close the educational gap faced by students who have experienced homelessness,” Jennifer Erb-Downward, […]

Reports: Drug manufacturers and middlemen both responsible for rising prices

BY: - May 19, 2021

The world of prescription drug pricing can be bewildering — intentionally so, some critics of the industry claim.  Whether that’s true or not, several reports this year show that the supply chain’s alchemy of list prices, rebates and net prices hurts consumers. And a U.S. Senate report says drugmakers and middlemen share the blame. The […]

Biden praises Tlaib, previews Ford F-150 Lightning and touts jobs plan in Dearborn

BY: - May 18, 2021

President Joe Biden used a visit to Dearborn, Michigan, Tuesday to praised U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Detroit, for her passion defending Palestine. “I want to say to you that I admire your intellect, I admire your passion and I admire your concern for so many other people,” Biden told Tlaib. “And from my heart, I […]

Sammy’s Avenue Eatery weathered a pandemic and civil unrest and came out stronger

BY: - May 14, 2021

Sammy McDowell just wanted to be his own boss and make good food for people.  But Sammy’s Avenue Eatery became much more to the people in north Minneapolis — “like the Cheers bar” — which helped his business weather a year that’s been brutal for restaurants, small businesses and Black-owned businesses.  In an interview on […]

Federal probe of drug middlemen urged

BY: - May 11, 2021

After years of accusations in Minnesota and elsewhere, a bipartisan group in the U.S. Senate wants federal regulators to investigate whether drug middlemen and their parent companies are rigging the system to raise prices and pad their pockets. Sens. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., last month filed legislation that would require the Federal Trade Commission […]

Effort to rein in electronic pull tabs pits tribal casinos against bars, charities

BY: - May 5, 2021

A fierce debate has emerged at the State Capitol over the future of legal gambling. Minnesota tribes, which control slot machine gambling, are pushing for closer regulation of so-called electronic pull tabs, which have exploded in popularity in recent years at bars across the state.  The debate, coming in the legislative session’s closing days, has […]

With unemployment fund dry, taxes going up

BY: - May 3, 2021

Minnesota’s unemployment trust fund went from a $1.5 billion surplus before the pandemic hit to a $1.36 billion deficit today, which means payroll taxes will go up five-fold next year to replenish the fund. The base unemployment tax rate is .1% on every paycheck for all taxpaying employers, and that’s expected to increase to .5% […]

Minnesota job vacancies up, labor market improving

BY: - April 27, 2021

Job vacancies went up 14% in the last quarter of 2020 compared to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new report from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development.  “These job vacancy numbers show us there’s a lot of opportunity in Minnesota right now,” said DEED Commissioner Steve Grove. The state […]

Biden to order $15-an-hour minimum wage for federal contract workers

BY: - April 27, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden plans to sign an executive order Tuesday to raise the minimum wage for federal contract workers to $15 an hour, according to senior administration officials. The order will go into effect Jan. 30 of next year, according to a fact sheet provided by the administration. Once in place through new […]