Stribber Chris Riemenschneider reports, “One of the most familiar voices on the local radio dial, Mary Lucia announced on air Wednesday afternoon that she is taking a leave of absence from 89.3 the Current. A candid open letter posted on the station’s website says she’s making the hard decision after she was harassed by a stalker at both her work and home.” Too many creeps with nothing better to do.
Shades of Rick Scott’s Florida. Todd Richmond of the AP says, “A Wisconsin board has banned its employees from working on global warming issues on state time in what’s become a bitter feud between a Republican board member and Earth Day founder Gaylord Nelson’s daughter. The three-member Board of Commissioners of Public Lands voted 2-1 on Tuesday to institute the ban on its nine employees, with the lone Democrat on the board casting the dissenting vote. Republican State Treasurer Matt Adamcyzk proposed the ban, saying he’s upset that the board’s executive secretary, Tia Nelson, worked on global warming issues on board time years ago.”
If only the airport would pay more. The KMSP-TV story says, “A new report released by the Center for Popular Democracy says there’s a disproportionately high poverty rate for the East African communities in Minnesota, and that Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, the largest employer of those workers in the state, can help. According to the report, 63 percent of Somalis in the state are living below the poverty line, and the poverty rate for the Ethiopian community jumped 25 percent since 2000. The Center for Popular Democracy contends $15 hourly wages at the airport ‘would have a dramatic impact on the workers and the growing East African population in our state.’”
Also from KMSP: “The Freeborn County sheriff and Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension are investigating the discovery of human remains off the shoulder of Interstate 90 near Albert Lea, Minn., and are asking the public to help identify a ring found with the remains. … . The ring is 10-karat gold, shaped like a class ring and has a large red stone. A pair of shoes was also found with the remains, but Sheriff Kurt Freitag said the shoes were so worn, a photo would not be useful. The shoes were made by the Mario De Gerard shoe company.”
Check those Wild tickets real close. WCCO-TV says, “Police are warning fans to be cautious so their enthusiasm doesn’t turn them into victims as the Minnesota Wild clinched a spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs Tuesday night. Police arrested a Minneapolis man who is accused of purchasing a few Minnesota Wild tickets on Ticketmaster, and turning them into dozens of counterfeit ones. Officers are withholding the suspect’s name as they search for more victims.”
You know it’ll be good when the conservative Daily Caller runs a news story on Gov. Dayton’s bonding bill … complete with sinister union component lurking within. Writes Connor Wolf: “Following the release of a new statewide jobs plan Tuesday, the Minnesota chapter of the AFL-CIO announced its adamant support. … Andy Burns, the executive director of the state Libertarian Party, notes that though he is not certain, he would not be surprised if the bill is designed to benefit unions. ‘If you are a betting man I’d say the unions will likely get something out of this.’ Burns also went onto argue that the projects being proposed in the jobs bill would also be better handled through private industry. ‘Government doesn’t create jobs,’ Burns declared.”
Speaking of the Gov, Kyle Potter of the AP says, “In an effort to ease concerns about his plan to create 50-foot buffer zones along Minnesota waterways, Gov. Mark Dayton started lining up more money this week to reimburse farmers. The governor set aside $20 million in his proposed bonding bill unveiled Tuesday to buy up swaths of cropland from farmers. He also tasked his cabinet to seek out hundreds of millions of dollars through a federal program that pays farmers in 10- to 15-year contracts for instituting buffers, his office said.” Throw in a new pickup and you’ve got a deal.
Heavy-advertising Safelite autoglass is taking flak from the state Commerce Department. In the Strib, Dave Phelps says, “Safelite Group, based in Columbus, Ohio, claims Commerce Commissioner Michael Rothman is trying to drive the company out of Minnesota with regulatory decisions that ban the company from doing business with one and possibly more key insurers in the state. But Rothman said his department’s actions are consumer-driven and were prompted by complaints about Safelite’s domination in the glass repair marketplace.”
There’s a traffic jam on Gitchee Gummie. Sam Sanders of NPR reports, “Huge ice chunks stacked some 8 feet deep on Lake Superior have left 18 freighters stuck. The U.S. and Canadian Coast Guards have gotten involved, sending Canadian icebreakers and American vessels to to help the ships break free from Whitefish Bay. … That ice has gotten packed pretty densely. ‘Whitefish Bay is 100 percent covered with ice that is three feet thick’, said [Mark Gill, director of Vessel Traffic Services for the U.S. Coast Guard at Ste. Saint Marie, Michigan]. ‘The ice in Lake Superior has pressed up against this firm ice edge in Whitefish Bay and has started to roll up on itself, and it’s created a roughly 35 square mile field of ice. Some of the chunks that have come out of Lake Superior are pickup truck-sized.”
At City Pages, Alex Lauer thinks filmmaker Bill Pohlad may have a bona fide hit on his hands. “Last September, Pohlad attended the Toronto International Film Festival for the world premiere of his second directorial effort, Love & Mercy, a biopic on Beach Boys leader Brian Wilson. The stakes were high, as the festival has a reputation for being a testing ground for potential award-winners. … No one knew if Brian Wilson was going to show up to support the film, but he did. No one knew if the movie would stand out among hundreds of others, but it did. No one knew how the audience would respond. The film received a standing ovation.”