Minnesota’s uninsured drops to 5.9 percent

REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

Healthy numbers: Glenn Howatt at the Star Tribune notes the number of uninsured Minnesotans dropped to a record low in 2014 under the Affordable Care Act’s individual insurance mandate: “Since last November, more than 325,000 Minnesotans have signed up for health insurance using the state’s MNsure exchange. The vast majority landed in the Medical Assistance or MinnesotaCare state-run programs, which now cover one out of every five Minnesotans.”

While Minnesota is considered a haven for refugees, Maja Beckstrom at the Pioneer Press reports we can expect very few Syrians: “One reason is that the Minnesota pipeline already is full of people forced out of other countries by older international conflicts. Minnesota has resettled about 2,000 refugees annually over the past five years, 90 percent following family members who already settled here, called ‘family reunification cases.’ The majority of these are Somali and ethnic Karen from Myanmar.”

KARE-TV reports Brian Rhett Johnson, employed as a Hennepin County deputy, has been charged with stalking a woman he met on a dating website: “After being contacted by the victim Apple Valley Police contacted Johnson, who said he was aware the victim told him to stop contacting her. The officer attempted to read him a letter advising Johnson he could be guilty of stalking but the defendant refused to listen, saying it was his ‘first amendment right’ and that he could say anything he wanted to the victim.” After he contacted the woman through Facebook again, Apple Valley Police arrested Johnson at his residence in Blaine.

Ben Gotz at the Minnesota Daily shares the harrowing story of former Minnesota Gophers tight end Ben Utecht struggling with long-term memory after multiple concussions and the LearningRx Brain Training Center in Savage that’s trying to help: “The holidays have become a hard time for Utecht. While his family sits around a table reminiscing, he can often only stare blankly ahead. The repeated injuries to his brain have crippled his long-term memory. ‘Oftentimes, I just sit there and have no recollection of what people are talking about,’ Utecht said. ‘It’s just completely gone, like a blackboard’s been wiped clear. No matter how hard I try, nothing jumps. Nothing comes out.'”

Your score will look a lot better if it’s only 15 holes. Steve Brandt at the Star Tribune has an update on restoring flood-damaged Hiawatha golf course in Minneapolis and the problems the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board is facing: “‘The underlying assumptions about this project have changed drastically,’ area park Commissioner Steffanie Musich said, labeling the degree of groundwater pumped from the course already ‘shocking.’ She drew scattered boos from some golfers when she pledged that the course would remain a park, even if golf can’t be maintained.

In other news…

Found: Person who sent John Oliver 12 bobbleheads of former Timberwolves point guard Jonny Flynn. [Star Tribune]

Funeral of family killed in murder-suicide in Lake Minnetonka home will be Sunday. [Star Tribune]

Courts for tuj lub being constructed at Keller Regional Park in Maplewood. [KSTP]

“The lesson of Minnesota is that the chasm in incarceration rates is deeply tied to the socioeconomic chasm between black and white America.” [The Atlantic]

Minnesotans rank No. 2 in study of ‘happy’ states. [Pioneer Press]

Shoplifter caught with pork in pants. [LaCrosse Tribune, h/t Bob Collins]

In other grocery news: Target to test a junk food-free check-out lane. [Star Tribune]

Sen. Rand Paul‘s pre-debate regimen includes a stop at Big Red:

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Comments (3)

  1. Submitted by L.A. Krahn on 09/16/2015 - 02:12 pm.

    Uninsured vs underinsured

    And the percentage of UNDER-insured Minnesotans is…? Rising exponentially?

  2. Submitted by Pat Berg on 09/16/2015 - 03:05 pm.

    Rand Paul’s shopping stop

    Looks like they cleared out the shoppers and filled up the shelves. (Can’t have Rand Paul encountering empty shelves and racks the way the rest of us do at Tar-jhay!)

  3. Submitted by Brian Krause on 09/16/2015 - 04:10 pm.


    I like “Big Red”, but in my days working downtown I preferred the term “Red Army” on the days when all the Target people had to wear red (it’s a funny sight). The reference to the omnipresent institution of a deceased totalitarian state is just a convenient, and fitting, coincidence.

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