Striking nurses reach tentative deal with Allina

MinnPost photo by Peter Callaghan

A deal? Jeremy Olson in the Strib says, “Allina Health and its nurses reached a tentative agreement around 4 a.m. Tuesday after a 17-hour negotiating session called together by Gov. Mark Dayton at his residence. Terms of the deal weren’t immediately available … . Nurses have rejected three prior contracts, most recently in an Oct. 3 vote. But this time their union, the Minnesota Nurses Association, will recommend the contract’s approval, according to the statement from the governor’s office.

This isn’t good. The AP says, “Minnesota’s fiscal year is off to a rocky start as state government revenues slip below projections. State budget officials announced Monday that tax collections were $97 million below their projections in the first three months of the fiscal year that began in July. That’s a 2.1 percent miss compared to the state’s budget. Minnesota officials and legislative leaders have warned that the state’s economic outlook isn’t as rosy after several years of growth.”

Funky landscaping. At MPR Brita Greene writes, “If you’ve ever seen the house featured in this story, you’ll know it. It’s near Como Park in St. Paul, and it’s actually the yard — not the house — that’s remarkable. It’s not your standard green lawn or filled with typical Minnesota flowers. Instead, carefully crafted shrubs and brightly colored sculptures create a whimsical design. The house caught the eye of independent audio producer Rob McGinley Myers, who lives in the neighborhood. He decided to introduce himself to the owner, Quentin Nguyen, and he heard a fascinating story of Nguyen’s vision and the response he’s received from neighbors.”

Another night of cleaning for the Lowry Tunnel. Hannah Weikel at MPR says, “Late-night downtown Minneapolis travelers beware: the Lowry Tunnel on Interstate 94 will close Monday and Tuesday night for cleaning. The Minnesota Department of Tranportation had delayed the closure last week due to weather. The tunnel will close in both directions … from 10 p.m. Tuesday to 5 a.m. Wednesday, weather permitting.”

Also in road news, Stribber Tim Harlow says, “On Monday, the Minnesota Department of Transportation took the first step to address safety concerns on ‘The Corridor of Death,’ [Highway 12] as it is commonly called. MnDOT is building a concrete median divider to separate eastbound and westbound traffic between County Road 112 and County Road 6, the first improvement in nearly two years on the dangerous stretch of road.”

What’s 32 years in music trends? Says Jay Gabler at The Current, “The nominations for this year’s American Music Awards have just been announced. The big headline is Drake’s record-breaking 13 nominations — but the biggest surprise might be Prince’s nomination in the Top Soundtrack category. Why is it a surprise? Because (a) Purple Rain was released in 1984, not 2016; and (b) it’s already won an American Music Award, for Best Pop/Rock Album in the year it was released .… . The nomination seems due to the chart success of Purple Rain this year: the album hit number two on the Billboard 200 in the wake of Prince’s death in April.”

Well, this was quick. Says Bob Shaw in the PiPress, “The dream was launched three years ago, the winner of a million-dollar idea contest. But now it has come crashing to the ground. The St. Paul Foundation spent $1 million on Urban Oasis, a food-oriented advocacy group that will be dissolving Dec. 31. The money is — apparently — gone. ‘We have been unable to identify a sustainable financial model for our broad vision,’ said founder Tracy Sides in a news release. Sides won the money in the 2013 ‘Forever St. Paul Challenge,’ a contest for the best idea to improve life in St. Paul. Her proposal — to promote the growing and cooking of local food in the inner city — was picked over almost 1,000 competing ideas.”

Over a pack of cigarettes. Mara Gottfried of the PiPress reports, “An employee of a St. Paul gas station was burned when an angry customer filled a 16-ounce cup of coffee and threw it in his face, police said Monday. … A young man had tried to buy cigarettes, but the clerk wouldn’t sell them to him because the customer lacked identification, said Steve Linders, a St. Paul police spokesman. The next customer in line asked for the same kind of cigarettes and the clerk suspected he would give them to the first man, so he refused to sell them to him, too, Linders said. The second man who tried to buy cigarettes became angry, yelling and swearing. The clerk, a 54-year-old man, told the angry customer to leave the store. Instead, the man went to the coffee machine, filled a large cup with coffee, threw it at the clerk and ran out, according to Linders.”

Cheryl Reeve of the Lynx had something to say about “locker room talk” The Donald says he was engaging in with TV celebrity Billy Bush. Says Tim Reynolds for the AP, “At the WNBA Finals, Minnesota Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve said the mere notion of ‘locker room talk’ further shows that women aren’t treated equally. ‘He was trying to say, “It’s what men do.” And that to me is the inherent problem,’ Reeve said. ‘It IS what men do. Let’s not have all these men stand up and say, ‘Well, we don’t do that!’ … Donald Trump’s candidacy has shined the light on so many problems that exist that I always talk about. He is the epitome of all these things. He’s not alone. It is behavior that’s been accepted for years.’”

Among the new developments in the Wells Fargo scandal: From Reuters we learn, “A group of nuns and other religiously affiliated investors have lost faith in embattled Wells Fargo and filed a shareholder resolution calling on the bank to report on the root causes of a fake accounts scandal that led to a $190 million settlement struck with regulators last month. … The resolution is one among a series filed recently at Wells Fargo, including several from other investor groups affiliated with the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility in New York. Other resolutions call on Wells Fargo to study a breakup and to split the roles of chairman and chief executive officer.”

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