Water main repaired; I-694 will remain closed through weekend

The GleanWell, that’s progress. The Pioneer Press’ Mary Divine reports:The water main that broke Sunday morning in Oakdale and forced the closure of part of Interstate 694 has been replaced and only one resident remains without water, city officials said Wednesday morning. … A lengthwise crack in the 12-inch pipe resulted in a leak of more than 1.5 million gallons of water and created a massive washout that is expected to keep I-694 between Minnesota 36 and Interstate 94 closed through the weekend. … A city spokeswoman said the city’s repairs are on track to be completed by Friday. … Shawn Nelson, utilities superintendent, said crews are still trying to determine the cause of the crack.”

Minnesotans pretty OK with their taxes. For MPR, David Montgomery writes: “…[APM Research Lab’s] survey did try to gauge whether Minnesotans thought they were getting their money’s worth, asking: Do Minnesotans feel like they’re getting a good value for Minnesota taxes they pay? … Minnesota collected about 9 percent of the state’s economy in state taxes in 2015, not counting federal taxes, those from local governments, or earnings from investments. … That’s the 11th highest share of the economy of the 50 states. … But the Ground Level survey of 1,654 Minnesota adults found a majority of believe ‘government in Minnesota is providing a good value for the taxes you pay.’ 

Sounds extreme, but this is really crappy behavior. The Star Tribune’s Paul Walsh reports: “Residents of a large apartment building in downtown Minneapolis are under orders to surrender their dogs’ DNA in a campaign to crack down on poop left on the property, an enforcement strategy that is gaining around the country. … Management of the Soo Line Building, an apartment complex with 250 or so units in the heart of Minneapolis, sent letters this fall to residents directing them to turn over a sample of their dogs’ chromosomes for storage with BioPet Lab in Knoxville, Tenn.”

Really interesting profile of Minnesota’s first ISIS recruit. MPR’s Mukhtar Ibrahim writes: “Abdifatah Ahmed’s life in Minneapolis seemed carefree — a clean-shaven family man obsessed with selfies, shooting hoops at a local basketball court and pumping iron at an Uptown gym. … Below the surface, though, Ahmed, faced a well of problems, and by late 2013, they were closing in. … Earlier, he had called an ex-spouse ‘in tears’ because an ex-wife from another state was seeking to collect child support, which may have sent Ahmed, then 33, into a tailspin. … By November 2013, he’d flown to London to meet up with friends and shake off the pressure. It seemed to work. Later in the month, while still in London, he’d called a loved one to say he wanted to return to Minneapolis, but first had to change his ticket. … But Ahmed, also known as Abdirahmaan Muhumed, never returned. Instead, he would turn up months later in Syria where he became the first Minnesotan to fight for ISIS, and one of the first to die.

In other news…

Was undermining capitalism:‘Santa’ drops $1,000 on shoppers from fourth floor, gets kicked out of Mall of America” [Star Tribune]

Festivus sounds better every year:Minnesota escapes national Christmas tree shortage, but you might pay more” [Star Tribune]

The year in tears and memories:Which Minneapolis & St. Paul restaurants opened and closed in 2017?” [City Pages]

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