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Legislature retains law firm for suit against governor

Plus: downtown Minneapolis buildings see wave of renovations; family of Jamar Clark sues police; St. Paul police watch “Zootopia” during bias training; and more. 

Minnesota State Capitol
MinnPost photo by Corey Anderson

The legal showdown between the Legislature and the governor took another slow tick forward. MPR’s Brian Bakst reports: “A Minneapolis law firm has been formally retained to represent the Legislature in a possible lawsuit against Gov. Mark Dayton. … A contract signed Friday covers the scope and hourly cost of the Legislature’s legal representation. The firm Kelley, Wolter and Scott will charge lawmakers half its normal hourly rate for the work, but that still ranges from $90 an hour for paralegal time to $325 for principal attorney Doug Kelley.”

Reports of downtown Minneapolis’ death may have been exaggerated. The Star Tribune’s Nicole Norfleet reports: “It’s hard not to notice the taped-off corridors and the men and women in hard hats and neon vests in the office buildings of downtown Minneapolis and St. Paul these days. … Just as motorists encounter construction on Twin Cities roads in the warmer months, a similar flurry is happening in the cities’ most-trafficked office towers. … The office market has changed dramatically in recent years. Tenants are more concerned about amenities and resources in a building rather than how tall it is, said Reed Christianson, a partner at Transwestern.”

The next phase of the Jamar Clark case is under way. The Star Tribune’s Libor Jany writes: “The family of Jamar Clark, a black man whose shooting death by Minneapolis police in 2015 set off weeks of protests, has filed a federal lawsuit against the two officers involved alleging excessive use of force. … The lawsuit was filed this week in U.S. District Court and names the officers — Mark Ringgenberg and Dustin Schwarze — as defendants. William Starr, one of two attorneys who filed the lawsuit on behalf of Clark’s father and trustee of his estate, James Clark, declined to comment.”

Not as silly as it sounds. KMSP’s Maury Glover reports: “More than 800 employees of the St. Paul Police Department recent went through their annual equity training. … This year, they turned to an animated movie from Hollywood to talk about some serious issues they face every day. … Zootopia, which was released last year, won an Oscar for its handling of subjects like prejudice and bias. Now the animated metaphor for race relations could help police in the real world see those same issues in a new light.”

In other news…

So much for the whole “dominion over all the earth” thing: “Megachurch pastors ordered to restore shoreline after clearing trees along Mississippi” [Inforum]

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Well, when you caucus with Republicans … “DNC bigwig Rep. Keith Ellison threatens rebel N.Y. state senators with ‘flyswatter’ for breaking ranks” [NY Daily News]

Congrats to Derick Prelle, formerly of KKR Capstone’s retail and consumer operations group: “Mills Fleet Farm names new CEO” [Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal]

Sunny news from Rochester: “Rochester Public Utilities announces new solar program” [Rochester Post Bulletin]

Sweet: “Minneapolis Cookie Cart expanding to St. Paul storefront” [Star Tribune]