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Judge OKs punitive damages in Minneapolis tenant suit

Plus: black unemployment in Minnesota; General Mills moving into pet food; Minnesota’s out-sized contribution to Team USA; and more.

The GleanSometimes those lies come back to bite you. The Star Tribune’s Randy Furst reports: “A Hennepin County judge has revealed new details about how two major landlords tried to deceive the city of Minneapolis in a ruling that will allow more than 5,000 tenants to seek punitive damages. … Landlords Stephen Frenz and Spiros Zorbalas could be forced to pay tenants, many of them low income, up to $500 million in damages if the two men lose a class-action lawsuit under a court order issued Wednesday. … In blunt language, Judge Mary Vasaly wrote that Frenz lied to the city attorney’s office by claiming that he alone owned rental properties, even as he had signed a secret deal in which Zorbalas remained an owner.

An in-depth look at black unemployment, and what people in Minneapolis are doing right. The New York Times’ Natalie Kitroeff and Ben Casselman report: “A tight labor market alone can’t undo a legacy of unequal school funding, residential segregation or the disproportionate rate of incarceration for black Americans. Nor can it reverse the gradual shift of well-paying jobs from inner cities to mostly white suburbs. Studies have found that discrimination in hiring and pay persists even in good economic times, making parity an elusive goal. … ‘It’s not microwaveable,’ said Louis King, who runs a training program in Minnesota that aims to put minority workers into construction and health care careers. ‘You don’t press a button and it suddenly changes.’

General Mills is going to the dogs. CNBC’s David Faber and Lauren Hirsch report: “General Mills is moving into the pet food business with a deal to buy Blue Buffalo Pet Products for roughly $8 billion in cash. … General Mills’ offer price of $40 per Blue Buffalo share represents a premium of 17.2 percent to Blue Buffalo’s closing price on Thursday. Blue Buffalo’s shares surged more than 16 percent on Friday morning, while General Mills shares fell 3.5 percent.”

You’re welcome, America. In the New York Times, Pat Borzi writes: “Practically the entire population of Minnesota was functioning on about four hours of sleep on Thursday. And happy to be doing so. … From Warroad, the little town near the Canadian border with a lengthy Olympic hockey heritage, to the Twin Cities and farther south, lights stayed on well into Thursday morning as the United States women’s hockey team, with seven Minnesotans on the roster, beat Canada, 3-2, in a shootout for the gold medal to end 20 years of Olympic frustration. … It capped a whirlwind 48 hours of Minnesota success at the Pyeongchang Olympics. It began with Lindsey Vonn, who learned to ski as Lindsey Kildow on the slopes of Buck Hill in the Minneapolis suburbs before moving to Colorado as a teenager, taking bronze in the women’s downhill.”

In other news…

Enough of this:St. Francis calls off school due to alleged threat” [Star Tribune]

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PSA:I-35W weekend closures on tap for early March in Minneapolis” [MPR]

Did not realize this happened so often:Brad Dokken: Two more crazy antler encounters” [Grand Forks Herald]

One less reason to fly them:Sun Country has ‘streamlined’ Surly beer right off its flights” [City Pages]

So proud:Afton’s Jessie Diggins selected U.S. flag bearer for closing ceremony” [Pioneer Press]