PolyMet formally applies for copper-mining permit

In the map above, PolyMet’s proposed Northmet mine site is circled in purple and the processing plant at Hoyt Lakes circled in orange.

PolyMet pushes forward. The Star Tribune’s Josephine Marcotty reports: “PolyMet Mining Corp. has formally applied for a permit to dig for copper in northeast Minnesota, the first of its kind in state history and a key turning point in the decades-long battle to establish a new but environmentally risky kind of mining in northeast Minnesota. … And addressing a critical question that has hung over the project for years, the company specified how much money it would offer as financial insurance against future pollution and reclamation costs: $12 million for the first year of construction, $44 million for the second, and $197 million for the third.”

Minnesotans love them some voting. MPR’s Caroline Yang writes: “Nearly 416,000 Minnesota residents have already cast their ballots for next week’s election. … The early votes are pouring in as the state holds its first presidential election with no-excuse absentee voting. Voters previously had to provide a reason to cast a ballot ahead of time.”

Well, if you’ve got nothings to hide … Public Record Media’s Mike Kaszuba reports: “Since that flight, the drone has been used on a limited basis, according to records and other information obtained by St. Paul non-profit Public Record Media (PRM).  According to the sheriff’s office, the limited use of the drone to date is a product of agency policies that govern the operations of the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). … The sheriff’s office appears to have tread lightly into what is an evolving legal area. Its current drone policy restricts operations to search and rescue missions, and prohibits use for surveillance activities, or for targeting a person based solely on characteristics such as ‘race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, disability, gender or sexual orientation.’  The sheriff’s office added that data collected by the drone that is not related to a criminal investigation is destroyed after 30 days.”

Speaking of cameras … MPR’s Matt Sepic writes: “Twin Cities civil rights leaders are speaking out against the St. Paul Police Department’s new body cam policy, as officers in part of the city start wearing them next week. The St. Paul NAACP supported the city’s efforts to get the devices. But the group now says police need to change the rules about how they’re used. … St. Paul police officers in the city’s western district will start wearing body cameras on their uniforms next Wednesday. Patrol officers are taking part in the 60-day test along with SWAT team members, traffic cops and K-9 officers.”

In other news …

Nice: “New Metro Transit app allows paying fares with smartphones” [Star Tribune]

Oh, well, all is forgiven then: “CEO Tim Sloan: Wells Fargo will hire back workers fired ‘inappropriately’” [Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal]

MSP 10th best: “These Are the 30 Best and Worst U.S. Airports” [Fortune]

Great roundup of the new Native cuisine movement, which is centered right here in Minnesota: “What is Native American Cuisine?” [Gastropod]

One walleye between 19 and 21 inches, or one longer than 28 inches: “DNR Announces Mille Lacs Lake Winter Fishing Limits” [WCCO]

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