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Sick of Southwest LRT? Get ready for Gateway Rapid Transit

I suppose there’s no point waiting until there’s a resolution on the Southwest LRT … . In a Strib commentary, county commissioners Rafael Ortega and Lisa Weik argue, “[W]e believe the state should invest in the next phase of federally required study for the proposed Gateway Corridor rapid transit line from St. Paul to Woodbury. … By 2030, population along the corridor is expected to swell by 40 percent (90,000 people) and the area is projected to add 61,500 jobs. Gateway Corridor rapid transit would … would provide all-day transit service on either light rail or bus rapid transit (BRT) in a dedicated guideway.”

It’s law … . Eric Roper of the Strib says, “Gov. Mark Dayton rang in Mother’s Day Sunday by giving final approval to a package of bills aimed at improving conditions for women in the workplace. … The initial cost of the [Women’s Economic Security Act] effort is expected to be about $2.46 million. About $711,000 of that will ensure contractors are meeting equal pay provisions … . Monitoring the pay equity component will have an ongoing cost of about $926,000 a year.”

Go for it … . Maya Rao at the Strib reports, “Minneapolis officials are taking early steps toward joining ­Seattle and San Francisco in becoming ‘zero waste’ cities where just about every scrap of trash is recycled. A public hearing to ban hard-to-recycle foam takeout containers is scheduled for Monday and City Hall is drafting a plan to pick up food scraps and other organic items from every home by next year, something several metro-area cities already do.”

Interesting piece by Hal Davis of the PiPress on the topic of “policing for profit”: “If a judge in a civil forfeiture case finds a bad bust, can he keep the state from seizing the defendant’s property, even if the guy pleaded guilty in a criminal case?” The state recently made it harder for law enforcement to keep seized property, but this Supreme Court case preceded that change.

The GleanFive chihuahuas have suffered death by hookah … . Also in the PiPress, Raya Zimmerman reports, “A St. Paul woman escaped a house fire through a small basement window Sunday, but five dogs died in the blaze. St. Paul fire investigator Jamie Novak cited an improperly extinguished hookah, or water pipe, as the cause of the fire.”

Also under “a tough weekend for dogs” … . The AP says, “Two puppies that were discarded in a recycling bin behind a St. Paul animal hospital were found this week, one dead and the other barely clinging to life. As the surviving dog continues to recover, police are investigating the case as possible animal cruelty … .”

Cool video of a crippled Cirrus plane landing via parachute, via the Duluth News Tribune. This is how the Duluth-made plane’s safety system is supposed to work; the incident happened in Australia. It was a demonstration flight.

Have you spent your pasta money yet?  Dave Kolpack of the AP tells us, “A  [North Dakota] company accused of falsely advertising the health benefits of its nationally distributed Dreamfields Pasta line has agreed to settle a class-action lawsuit and pay $5 million to consumers who bought the products in the last decade. … Under the agreement, consumers will be refunded $1.99 for each box of pasta bought since February 2004. It limits the payments to 15 boxes of pasta bought at any store … .”

Just when locals had visions of another Wild Stanley Cup series win, the Blackhawks beat Minnesota in Chicago 2-1 for 3-2 series lead. The PiPress’s Tom Powers laments the Wild losing an early lead, as does the Strib’s Michael Russo.

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