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Legislators have medical-marijuana deal cops don’t hate

No pot-smoking, but clinical trials; Edina homelessness; Mariucci needs U facilities bucks?; a Chinese spy with Minnesota roots; and more.

marijuana plantsCreative Commons/Guilhem Vellut

The AP says there’s a “new compromise” on getting medical marijuana to the suffering that “is unopposed by law enforcement.” It would be small-scale clinical trials, not involving smoking. That’s a pretty big come-down from what advocates wanted, but the bill does guarantee the med-mal will be available even if the feds don’t approve the trial. 

Tom Scheck at MPR saw this coming earlier in the day: “Police and prosecutors say they’re open to a compromise on medical marijuana but remain firmly opposed to efforts to allow patients to smoke it. Law enforcement groups told the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday that they might not oppose marijuana extracts like oils or pills for treatment, but they don’t want to see the creation of 55 marijuana dispensaries, as allowed in the bill.”

Homeless … Edina? Mary Jane Smetanka of the Strib says, “A seemingly unlikely location — Edina — has been chosen as the place to build the first apartment building for homeless young people in the western suburbs. Local churches are working with Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative of St. Paul to convert a TCF Bank building near Southdale into a 39-unit apartment building with space for counselors who would help homeless youths finish school and find jobs.” I hope they get food chits for The Galleria.

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Does the U really need another sports-spending initiative? Also in the Strib, Amelia Rayno says, “The University of Minnesota already has big goals for athletic venue upgrades. This spring, it’s looking to add one more building to its to-do list: Mariucci Arena. The university is considering an $8 million renovation of Mariucci that could potentially include a smaller ice sheet, better sight lines and increased seating.” How about wider nets?

Shocking …Mike Creger of The Forum News Service says, “Ships are still being escorted with ice breakers on Superior, so the clump of those seen coming into Duluth on Wednesday will likely be repeated in coming days. Nine upbound ships were just north of Whitefish Bay on Wednesday afternoon, headed to ports west.” One expert says he wouldn’t be surprised if there was ice on Superior in June. 

This sort of thing will only grow as the year’s go by …The AP says, “One of the most popular songs of all time, Bob Dylan’s ‘Like a Rolling Stone,’ is going to auction this summer. Sotheby’s is offering a working draft of the finished song in Dylan’s own hand for an estimated $1 million to $2 million. … The draft is written in pencil on four sheets of hotel letterhead stationery with revisions, additions, notes and doodles: a hat, a bird, an animal with antlers.” It’s not exactly The Gettysburg Address. But it’s up there.

Fascinating New Yorker piece on how China recruits U.S. spies. The elusive local angle? The spy profiled is a University of Minnesota engineering grad.

Protect the beasts who serve …Paul Walsh of the Strib says, “Protective vests are being donated to the four-legged protectors of citizens and visitors in Hennepin County. The eight vests, designed to counter gunfire and stabbing attempts, are being issued for dogs on the roster with the Sheriff’s Office. The donation is from the nonprofit Vested Interest in K-9s of Massachusetts.”