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Nix on the expanded Castle Doctrine, says Dayton

Strib backs St. Paul regional ballpark; high-end Jonathan Adler store to open; district settlement detailed; security option for travelers; and more.

Despite their pleasantries last week, Gov. Dayton vetoed GOP Rep. Tony Cornish’s latest gun bill. The MPR story, by Tom Scheck, says: “In his veto letter to the Legislature, Governor Dayton said he vetoed the bill because most major law enforcement agencies raised issues about the bill. Dayton said he appreciated the efforts to craft the bill to ease worries by law enforcement but said their concerns ‘must be honored.’ The bill would have given gun owners significantly more latitude to use deadly force for self defense. It would have allowed the use of deadly force with a weapon if people believe they are in imminent danger in a home, hotel room, car, boat or tent. The National Rifle Association issued a statement saying it was disappointed with Dayton’s veto.”

At the Strib, Jim Ragsdale says: “The bill, sponsored by Rep. Tony Cornish, R-Good Thunder, and Sen. Gretchen Hoffman, R-Vergas, was the top priority of the National Rifle Association and drew some DFL votes in addition to near-unanimous Republican support. The measure passed by votes of 40-23 in the Senate and 85-47 in the House. … Cornish, a Republican from Good Thunder, said the opposition stemmed from the executives of law enforcement organizations ‘not the rank and file.’ He said that the measure may take some time to become law but it will be back.” So we can gather that the cops actually in danger of taking fire were OK with the bill, is that right?

Oh, what the hey. Let’s throw in another stadium while we’re at it. The Strib editorializes in favor of a new ballpark for downtown St. Paul: “City leaders wisely want to use the property for a new regional ballpark that would be the new home for the St. Paul Saints minor-league baseball team. It’s a polluted site with limited options for reuse, but a good match for a 7,500-seat ballpark. The Central Corridor light-rail line will feed into the site. The ballpark is seen as so critical to the downtown’s economic development plans that city leaders have made the new $54 million facility their No. 1 legislative priority, Mayor Chris Coleman told the Star Tribune Editorial Board last month. … Sen. Geoff Michel, an Edina Republican, said the Saints have put their stadium proposal forward in a smart and strategic way. ‘They’ve made it bipartisan,’ he said. ‘They’ve got their local chamber leading the way. They’ve raised private funds. They’ve got a strong local partner in the city of St. Paul. They have stepped up so it almost stands in good contrast with the Vikings stadium drama. This is how to do a stadium.’ Let’s hope Michel can convince his legislative colleagues that the regional project is worthy of their support.”

Interior design junkies are apparently palpitating over news that a new high-end retail store is coming to town. At City Pages, Jessica Armbruster writes: “Soon, Uptown shoppers will be able to make their lives even more posh when modern pottery, furniture, and lifestyle store Jonathan Adler opens this month. The store is pretty, but at times pricey (while cruising through the site we found a knitted water-bottle cozy that costs over $100, but there’s also a section featuring gift ideas under $30). Items offered include furniture, pottery, knickknacks, and gifts (think Pottery Barn meets Andy Warhol).” Will my brew cellar collection of vintage Keystone Light cans fit in those knitted cozies?  

At its board meeting last night, the Anoka-Hennepin school district voted 5-1 to settle two suits against them. Steve Karnowski at the AP writes: “The Anoka-Hennepin School Board approved the settlement 5-1 at its meeting Monday evening. The district agreed to a long list of measures to help prevent and address sex-based harassment at its middle and high schools, including hiring consultants and working with federal authorities to ensure the district complies with the terms. The district’s insurance carrier will pay the six current and former students named in the lawsuits a total of $270,000, and the district will tap about $500,000 of its own funds to implement the agreement.”

Want to get out of the taking-off-the-shoes shtick at MSP? Get in line. John Welbes at the PiPress writes: “Travelers are always advised to book airline travel months ahead of time. The same is starting to hold true for applications to Global Entry, a new service to speed travelers through customs and security lines. In-person interviews for the program are already booked through April 23 at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, with customs officials weighing the possibility of opening more slots. Global Entry is ‘your ticket to get out of line,’ said David Murphy, director of field operations for U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Those accepted into the program can bypass the security lines that require you to take off shoes, or wait for an exit interview with a customs official when returning from an international trip.” And what about those al-Qaida-certified quarters you forgot in your pocket?

One stadium-related bill went pretty much nowhere Monday. Doug Belden of the PiPress reports: “Sponsor Roger Chamberlain, R-Lino Lakes, said there wasn’t time Monday to take the bill up in the Local Government and Elections committee but that he intends to pursue it even as the stadium bill getting all the attention — the one being written off the ‘term sheet’ for a downtown Minneapolis stadium unveiled last week — is expected to be introduced soon. Chamberlain’s bill would have the state issue $300 million in bonds paid back with stadium user fees and would leave any additional money to be raised by the Vikings and/or the local business community. As an incentive, it would phase out statewide business property taxes.”

Now here’s an (alleged) menace. Says Andy Rathbun in the PiPress: “A man suspected of throwing objects at cars last week in Bloomington — including a vise that struck a motorist in the face — has been arrested for the second time in three days after allegedly fleeing police in Wisconsin. Gerret Daniel Parks, 39, of Bloomington, was charged [Monday] in Polk County Circuit Court with felony fleeing police in a vehicle and remained in the Polk County Jail. Police were called at about 6 p.m. Sunday to a report of a man driving recklessly in a black sports utility vehicle on Worth Street in St. Croix Falls, Wis. While en route, police received a call from another citizen, who reported he had almost been struck by a black SUV, according to police. Parks was spotted by police driving an SUV at speeds of more than 70 mph in a 35-mph zone in the city, according to a report from the St. Croix Falls police department.”

Sally Jo Sorensen at Bluestem Prairie continues to be fascinated with GOP Rep. Mary Franson’s video comparing welfare recipients to animals in national parks: “It’s interesting to observe that amid the furor over Mary Franson’s nasty, internet-spawned ‘ironic’ comparison of feeding poor people with food stamps with feeding wild animals in national parks, there’s been little to no discussion of the ‘reforms’ in the Daudt bill that Franson used the ‘joke’ to introduce. … Even after a pseudo-apology and pulling of the Youtube from the MNGOP House caucus, Franson continued to insist that the reforms (carefully excised from the version that the Alliance for a Better Minnesota posted on its … page where people could register outrage via a petition) would increase ‘self-dependence’ which Bluestem takes to be the Franson-speak version of stalwart American virtues like ‘self-reliance’ or ‘independence.’ … her light-hearted delivery of the “ironic” bit is even more senseless and cruel, told less as a caution[ary] tale than as the imposition of the insensitive neighborhood jerk whose habitual tastelessness generates the most awkward of moment[s] at barbeques.”