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U of M Law School gets record gift to fund Center for New Americans

Plus: Wyoming police threaten drunk drivers with Justin Bieber; employees of medical marijuana facility accused of smuggling; faster security lanes coming to MSP airport; and more.

University of Minnesota Law School
University of Minnesota

Shannon Prather and Faiza Mahamud of the Star Tribune report, “A record-setting $25 million gift to the University of Minnesota Law School will help fund the school’s Center for New Americans, which has filed lawsuits on behalf of immigrant families and has dispatched attorneys and law students to the airport in the wake of President Donald Trump’s efforts to bar immigrants from seven majority-Muslim nations. The Minneapolis-based Robina Foundation, founded by former Honeywell president and board chairman James Binger, announced the award Monday afternoon. It is the single largest philanthropic gift in the law school’s 129-year history.”

Seventeen and holding. Julio Ojeda-Zapata of the PiPress says, “Minnesota’s lineup of Fortune 500 companies at the end of 2016 numbered 17, a figure that is unchanged from 2015, with their positions on Fortune’s annual list more or less holding steady. The biggest shifts: Inver Grove Heights-based CHS agriculture cooperative dropped to 84 in the lineup, from 69 last year. Eden Prairie-based C.H. Robinson logistics and supply-chain specialist rose in the ranking to 208 from 255, and the Minneapolis-based fraternal benefits organization Thrivent Financial rose to 318 from 333.”

No. No! Anything but that! Says Richard Chin in the PiPress, “Need to sober up? How about watching Justin Bieber dance? A Tweet from the Wyoming, Minn., police department during last night’s Super Bowl threatened to submit people arrested for drunken driving to forced viewings of Justin Bieber doing the ‘shimmedy sham-sham shimmedy shake.’ The tweet said that drunken drivers being hauled to jail would have to watch Bieber’s T-Mobile commercial that aired during the big game in which the pop star did his version of celebratory end zone dances while dressed in a tuxedo.”

It’s not just us and Washington. For GeekWire, Monica Nickelsburg reports, “Seventeen states — in addition to Washington and Minnesota — are asking the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit not to undo a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO), which brought Trump’s travel and immigration ban to a grinding halt Friday. … Hawaii also filed a request to join Washington and Minnesota as a plaintiff in the lawsuit, which claims Trump’s executive order is unconstitutional and violates immigration law. That request was denied, for the sake of the appeals process, but Hawaii will join the amicus brief instead.”

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Huh? For MPR, Tom Scheck says, “The Wright County Attorney’s office has brought felony charges against two former employees of Otsego-based Minnesota Medical Solutions, saying they smuggled concentrated marijuana oils out of state to aid their parent company. According to the complaint filed Monday, Ronald Owens, who worked as security director of Minnesota Medical Solutions, and Laura Bultman, the company’s former chief medical officer, conspired in December 2015 to transport 5.6 kilograms of concentrated marijuana oils from its Otsego, Minn. facility to New York because parent company Vireo Health was struggling to meet a production deadline for facilities licensed in New York state.”

Can we just keep our shoes on, please? MPR’s Tim Nelson tells us, “The Twin Cities airport plans to spend more than $1 million to make a time-consuming and sometimes awkward part of the screening process more streamlined. The Metropolitan Airports Commission on Monday approved the purchase of so-called automated security lanes that promise to increase the capacity of passenger screening by as much as 40 percent, using automatic bin dispensers and conveyors. The new system, recommended by the Transportation Security Administration, is expected to be in place for summer travel season. Occupying the center four lanes of the south checkpoint in Terminal 1, the equipment will feature rows of five stations, each with a bin dispenser so people can fill bins without waiting as long for a spot. The loaded bins move on roller belts into X-ray inspection, as passengers head to their own screening. The system also separates out bins that need extra inspection.”

Mark it: 362 days to goBen Goessling at ESPN writes, “The ‘Bold North’ theme of Super Bowl LII reflects a community trying to rebrand itself around its active populace, nationally-renowned parks system, vibrant theater scene and 17 Fortune 500 companies, rather than the hot dish-and-lutefisk cliches that are often attached to the state. A metropolitan area with a strong education system and unemployment rate below 4 percent is nonetheless losing young people and is hoping to seize on the momentum of upcoming events at U.S. Bank Stadium such as the Super Bowl and 2019 NCAA men’s Final Four to introduce itself to a larger audience.”