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Orono investment banker Scott Honour to challenge Dayton

Aaaand we have an opponent … The AP story says: “Minnesota’s slow-starting 2014 governor’s race got its first serious Republican contender on Wednesday when a successful businessman and political newcomer launched a campaign. Scott Honour revealed his plans in an email and the launch of a campaign website. A Minnesota native and investment banker who lives in Orono, Honour started several businesses and has been a prolific political donor mainly to Republicans, though he has also given to Democrats. Honour, who is not well known even among state Republicans, declined interview requests on Wednesday. He planned a round of interviews on Thursday that guaranteed a second day of media attention.”  An investment banker from Orono … not exactly another Wal-Mart Republican.

Yesterday, Hoigaard’s. Today … The Old Log. Graydon Royce in the Strib says: “The sale of the Old Log Theater in Excelsior appears imminent. The west-metro playhouse is closing its run of “Mahalia” on Sunday, and the theater will go dark for a month before opening the next production. The respite will be used for renovations to the state’s oldest professional theater, which includes a restaurant and sits on 11 acres near Lake Minnetonka. Don Stolz, who has owned the theater since 1946, said Wednesday that he and his sons are considering a bid from a potential buyer. He declined to say who the buyer is. … Others close to the deal, however, indicated that Twin Cities software developer Greg Frankenfield has the inside track.”

In the Duluth News Tribune, John Myers files a story on anti-coal activists arguing for the retirement of one of Minnesota Power’s big burners. “Minnesota environmental groups on Wednesday asked for a formal environmental review of Minnesota Power’s plans to spend $350 million to add pollution control equipment to one of four coal-burning units it operates in Cohasset. The groups, which would rather see the Boswell Energy Center Unit 4 shut down and retired, want an assessment of what impact upgrading the unit and continuing to burn coal will have on the state’s environment and human health. … The groups urged Minnesota Power to instead spend the $350 million on developing larger renewable energy projects in Minnesota.”

Another AP story says: “Minnesota has had no discussion of moving state government workers onto the state’s new health insurance exchange, said John Pollard, legislative and communications director for Minnesota Management and Budget. ‘No one that I know of has proposed or asked about doing this,’ Pollard said. … Minnesota’s State Employee Group Insurance Program has about 50,000 state and other public employees in its pool, including workers in executive branch agencies, the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system, the judiciary and the Legislature, he said. It covers about 110,000 people after dependents are added in.”

On DeSmogblog, Brendan Demelle reports: “Enbridge’s Line 2 pipeline has leaked an estimated 600 gallons of crude oil at its pump station near Viking, Minnesota. Line 2 was built in 1956 and has a history of spills. Regulators ordered Enbridge to reduce its Line 2 operating pressure in October 2010 following the company’s Kalamazoo River tar sands spill. The Enbridge Viking pump station also receives oil from the Alberta Clipper (aka Line 67 pipeline) that carries heavy crude oil and tar sands bitumen from the Alberta tar sands region south from Hardisty to Superior, Wisconsin and refineries in the midwestern United States.”

Heck, even fish need warmer weather than this to spawn. Dave Orrick of the PiPress writes: “The late spring has delayed sturgeon spawning in key Minnesota and Wisconsin waters. While not believed to be an issue for fish survival, the late spring could mean fish will be smaller heading into the winter — and the change in schedule has thrown a wrinkle into biologists’ schedules. For an angler hoping to take home a monster sturgeon, the harvest season on the Rainy River on the Minnesota-Canadian border begins Wednesday.”

It’ll be crowded next week … . Andy Greder of the PiPress tips readers to a meat deal: “Signage consists of white sheets of paper taped to the interior walls of a brick building on the University of Minnesota’s sleepy St. Paul campus. The sheets say ‘meat lab salesroom’ with arrows pointing down a hall and stairs to Room 26. In the windowless, concrete basement, employees in white lab coats fill orders for a dozen customers. Ground beef, bacon, apple brats, brown-sugar-cured hams, jerky and other meats are bagged. Quality is high and prices are low, but quantities are limited, so you gotta get there when the gettin’s good. And that would be from 2 to 5 p.m. Wednesdays, the only time the sales room is open.” No quills on the tenderloin, right?

The Glean Uh, now they’re talking a fresh $3.38 million? Frederick Melo of the PiPress reports: “St. Paul will make $3.38 million in improvements this year to Prince Street, a narrow Lowertown road that runs by the Central Corridor maintenance site to the Lafayette Bridge area. For drivers coming off U.S. 52 or Warner Road, the street is seen as an important access point for the future Lowertown regional ballpark that opens in 2015. But some city officials question why the improvement costs were not factored into the estimated $54 million price tag for ballpark construction. City Engineer John Maczko took tough questions from the St. Paul City Council on Wednesday, April 24, regarding the resolution to fund the Prince Street improvements.”

Jim Anderson of the Strib gets into the background check failures in the case of Nhan Tran, the Oakdale spree shooter: “Tran, 34, who faces six felony charges — including a count of second-degree murder in the death of Devin Aryal — was found to be mentally incompetent last month by a court-appointed psychologist. Yet he was able to clear the background check that enabled him to buy a gun from a federally licensed dealer. … There is no such court record, no documented red flags, for Tran relating to mental illness or a propensity for violence. And aside from a 2006 speeding ticket, no criminal record, either. None of the 18 restrictions on the state gun purchase permit, which set into motion the background check when he bought the gun, applied to Tran.”

Comments (6)

  1. Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 04/25/2013 - 09:34 am.

    When It Comes To an “Investment Banker” Running for Governor

    my default perspective is that Mr. Honour’s goal, if he were to be elected, would be to rearrange MN tax policy and reduce regulation in order to maximize income for himself and those like him, and enable entirely new forms of not-quite-Ponzi schemes by which to extract wealth from unsuspecting investors,…

    investors who are, by government law and government policy, then forced to pursue such investments because teacher’s and state employee pension programs (among others) will have been “privatized.”

    Unlike Tim Pawlenty who always seemed to be working on behalf of people like Mr. Honour and others in very top of the income scale,…

    Mr. Honour will be working on his OWN behalf,…

    to impoverish the poor and middle class citizens of Minnesota (most of us) in order to pad his own pockets.

    Despite whatever pattern of dishonest Republican (but I repeat myself) set of smokescreen issues he throws up to hide his true agenda,…

    his time as governor, if he were to win election, would be about “me, me, me,”…

    as opposed to Gov. Dayton, whose governorship is clearly about helping those in need, and rebuilding our state to recover from the damage done by Pawlenty, et al.

    For these reasons, Mr. Honour, who no doubt sees his ability to accumulate wealth as proof of his ability to “manage” the state,…

    and who would be completely unable to comprehend what’s wrong with managing it strictly on behalf of himself and the fabulously wealthy,…

    would, from the very start, appear to be a VERY POOR choice as governor.

  2. Submitted by RB Holbrook on 04/25/2013 - 09:45 am.

    Scott Honour

    Yet another successful businessman who “knows how to get things done” thinks he can jump into the Governor’s chair, take charge, and change everything. I have news for you, pal: that’s not how things work in the real world. A business is accountable only to its owners, but government is accountable to all citizens. Things don’t “get done” because everyone has a voice. Private equity funds have the option of shutting down a business if they don’t like what’s going on. Government doesn’t work that way. The Governor can try to get laws changed or passed, but the Legislature–the other representatives of the citizenry–don’t have to play. One can call that the problem, but it’s an inherent feature of a representative democracy.

    The real problem might be that the campaign for an election to be held in November 2014 is considered “late starting” in April 2013. We just finished the last one!

  3. Submitted by Arito Moerair on 04/25/2013 - 10:01 am.

    downtown St Paul

    I’m sad to say it, but downtown St Paul might cease to exist without government spending.

    • Submitted by Logan Foreman on 04/25/2013 - 01:18 pm.

      Most cities of rural MN

      Would not exist without aid from the state.

    • Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 04/25/2013 - 02:13 pm.

      Some of Us Clearly Don’t Understand

      Where the majority of the income in Minnesota is produced, and where it is spent. The Red/Blue divide in Minnesota is very much like that in the nation,…

      the income is produced and the taxes extracted primarily from the “liberal” areas,

      then redistributed to the “conservative” areas whose residents forever proclaim their independence and decry all those big city folks who live off the government.

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