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Environmental group calls for new PolyMet review in light of plan changes

Plus: heavy trucks violating ban from Lowry Tunnel; IRS shuts down Ely outfitter; Mille Lacs named America’s best bass lake; and more.

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

Has PolyMet altered the deal? The AP’s Steve Karnowski reports (via the Pioneer Press): “An environmental group says the design for the proposed PolyMet copper-nickel mine in northeastern Minnesota has changed in significant ways that require regulators to conduct a fresh environmental review of the revisions. … WaterLegacy says changes in the mine’s tailings basin and wastewater treatment facilities, and a new disclosure of how much water would be pumped from the mine, obligate federal and state agencies to take a closer look — a move that could cause further delays in an already long process. The group was making the request in a letter Thursday to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and other agencies. ”

These thoughtless mother … truckers. The Star Tribune’s Tim Harlow reports: “Drivers of semitrailer trucks, over-the-road buses, delivery trucks and vehicles weighing more than 9,000 pounds have apparently missed the memo about staying out of the Lowry Hill Tunnel. … Since Sunday when the Minnesota Department of Transportation reconfigured the lanes inside the tube by putting all traffic on one side and slimmed traffic lanes to 10 feet wide, large vehicles have been banned from driving through. Yet, a few trucks an hour have passed through, said David Aeikens, a MnDOT spokesman. … On Tuesday, a truck struck overhead lighting and damaged electrical equipment, leading to a 90-minute shut down of the right lane, Aeikens said.”

Brother, canoe spare a dime? The Duluth News Tribune’s John Myers reports: “Ely’s oldest operating canoe-outfitting business has been shut down by the Internal Revenue Service for nonpayment of taxes, with equipment and canoes apparently seized by the government. … An IRS notice on the door of Wilderness Outfitters notifies potential customers of the closure and warning people to stay away. … Reached by phone Wednesday morning, owner Gary Gotchnik told the News Tribune that he hoped to resolve the issue and reopen the business quickly. But it’s not clear how that might happen.”

Mille Lacs is all about that bass. At least, according to Bassmaster magazine: “Minnesota’s state motto is ‘Star of the North,’ which seems appropriate seeing Bassmaster Magazine has crowned the state’s second largest lake as the best bass fishery in the nation based on the recent release of the publication’s 100 Best Bass Lakes rankings. Mille Lacs Lake, a 132,516-acre natural lake located 100 miles north of the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, soared to the No. 1 spot after months of research unveiled its unbelievable production of smallmouth bass. Mille Lacs was ranked No. 6 in the nation last year.”

In other news…

Cool Q&A with a small DC outlet: “Sen. Al Franken talks poverty in D.C. and America” [Street Sense]

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Amazing how a decade flies by: “Hecker could move to halfway house as early as next week” [Star Tribune]

Losing affordable housing: “The last week in Lowry Grove: Another mobile home park shutters” [MPR]

St. Cloud liquor stores getting ready for Freedom Sunday: “Liquor businesses adapt to Sunday hours” [St. Cloud Times]

Perhaps of interest to you: “Four local podcasts led by queer folks, Indigenous women and women of color that say ‘we are here’ ” [TC Daily Planet]

Investors process B-dubs leadership change: “Will Marcato’s Influence Be Bad for Buffalo Wild Wings?” [The Motley Fool]

Interesting defense: “Defendant in LeMond ‘cybersquat’ suit issues denial, blames ID thief” [Star Tribune]