Met Council fences in homeless encampment in Minneapolis

BY: - May 8, 2020

The Metropolitan Council began installing a fence around a Minneapolis homeless encampment Thursday to prevent it from growing as local officials try to figure out how to manage the numerous health and safety risks homeless people face amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The number of tents — now surpassing 70 — has been steadily growing on […]

House poised to pass $208 million COVID-19 economic aid package

BY: - May 7, 2020

The Minnesota House is poised to approve a $208 million COVID-19 response package on Thursday, spending $100 million on housing assistance, $55 million on small business loans and $27 million for broadband access.  The plan from the majority DFL caucus also includes $26 million to increase pay for personal care attendants who often work with vulnerable […]

DeVos finalizes sexual assault rules that critics say ‘roll back the clock’

BY: - May 6, 2020

WASHINGTON — U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos finalized rules Wednesday that the administration says will improve due process in campus sexual assault cases, but that critics warn could discourage victims from coming forward. The new regulations expand rights for people accused of sexual misconduct on college campuses and make other changes to federal regulations governing schools’ obligations to […]

Minnesota reports 728 new COVID-19 cases and 30 deaths

BY: - May 6, 2020

Minnesota saw a spike in the reported number of COVID-19 cases between Monday and Tuesday as testing ramps up, with 728 new cases for a total of 8,579 patients. The state reported that 93,232 Minnesotans have been tested, an increase of more than 5,000 from the day before. The jump in positive cases Tuesday is […]

Federal funding for Brainerd Lakes, other small airports scaled back

BY: - May 6, 2020

Brainerd Lakes Regional Airport will receive $4 million in federal stimulus funding instead of the $18 million it was allotted last month, the Star Tribune reported Tuesday. As the Reformer previously reported, Brainerd Lakes Regional Airport was set to receive far more than busier Minnesota airports — like those in Duluth and Rochester — under […]

JBS Worthington plant reopens with reduced staff after COVID-19 outbreak

BY: - May 6, 2020

JBS USA, one of the largest meat processing companies in the country, reopened its Worthington pork processing plant Wednesday, after being forced to temporarily halt operations last month because of a COVID-19 outbreak. The reopening of the plant comes a week after President Donald Trump issued an executive order compelling meat packing plants to stay […]

State Senator says campgrounds should reopen because there are homeless encampments

BY: - May 6, 2020

State Senator Justin Eichorn, R-Grand Rapids, deleted a tweet Tuesday featuring a video of him standing in front of tents pitched along a busy street in St. Paul to make the argument for Gov. Tim Walz to reopen campgrounds. “As you can see behind me, we’ve got a nice little tent city set up here,” […]

JBS pork processing plant in Worthington

Trump’s critics warn his order to keep meatpacking plants open imperils workers

BY: - May 5, 2020

WASHINGTON — Democratic senators are accusing President Donald Trump of putting workers at risk by ordering meat and poultry processors to remain open during the COVID-19 pandemic. Senate Democrats — including Catherine Cortez Masto, Bob Casey, Sherrod Brown, Chris Van Hollen Sen. Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin are asking Trump to amend an executive order he signed […]

National Guard will fly over Minnesota hospitals Wednesday to honor essential workers

BY: - May 5, 2020

Fighter jets with the Minnesota National Guard will fly over the state Wednesday around 11 a.m. to recognize essential workers on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic. “These flyovers are our way of showing solidarity for those who have stepped forward to serve during this pandemic,” Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, adjutant general of the Minnesota […]

Minnesota faces sudden $2.4 billion budget deficit in COVID-19 fallout

BY: - May 5, 2020

Minnesota budget officials announced a $2.4 billion deficit Tuesday, a stunning reversal of the state’s fiscal picture from two months ago before COVID-19 sent shockwaves through the global economy. Minnesota Management and Budget Commissioner Myron Frans, MMB Economist Laura Kalambokidis and Budget Director Britta Reitan presented a grim and expedited accounting of the massive hit […]

Minnesota reports 617 new COVID-19 cases and 27 deaths

BY: - May 5, 2020

Minnesota saw a spike in the reported number of COVID-19 cases between Sunday and Monday as testing ramps up, with 617 new cases for a total of 7,851 patients. The state reported that 88,009 Minnesotans have been tested, an increase of more than 2,000 from the day before. Testing slowed slightly compared to the week […]

Lawyers and conservative activists suing Walz administration have been at it for decades

BY: - May 5, 2020

Libertarian lawyer Erick Kaardal has filed a lawsuit on behalf of a coalition of small businesses challenging Gov. Tim Walz’s executive order that declared some businesses essential and others not.  The policy is a cornerstone of Walz’s strategy to combat COVID-19 by keeping Minnesotans out of places that are most likely to serve as disease […]