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Storm on track to bring more snow, headaches Tuesday


MPR’s Paul Huttner writes: “Our February in April forecast is on track as expected so far. The lead waves brought lighter snow. The main event is still on track as we look forward into Tuesday. NOAA’s NAM 3 km resolution model captures the lull in snowfall, then the main event moving in before Tuesday morning rush hour. There’s no way to sugar coat it, Tuesday AM rush looks like an April mess.”

Springtime for tow trucksMeanwhile, writes the Star Tribune’s Pat Pheifer: “Crash after crash clogged metro area freeways in the Twin Cities long after the evening rush hour should have ended Monday night. It was all courtesy of a snowfall that caused slick roads, poor visibility and temperatures more reminiscent of late February than the second day of April. The snow was expected to continue through Tuesday evening, with totals reaching anywhere from 6 to 10 inches across southern Minnesota.”

Well, we’ll see how this plays out. Says Frederick Melo in the PiPress, “Facing allegations he entered a voting booth to help an elderly Hmong resident vote for him, St. Paul City Council Member Dai Thao formally entered a plea of not guilty Monday to the three charges against him. Thao, who ran for mayor in November, was represented by attorney Joe Dixon at the Ramsey County Law Enforcement Center in downtown St. Paul.”

MyPillow in Mar-a-Lago. Says Jennifer Brooks for the Strib, “President Donald Trump spent Easter weekend in Florida with political allies — including Minnesota pillow entrepreneur Mike Lindell. Lindell, founder of Chaska-based MyPillow, joined the president and other supporters for dinner Saturday. While other guests at the Florida estate reportedly spent the weekend pressing the president to take a harder stance on issues like immigration, Trump and Lindell focused on softer topics. ‘The President shook my hand and told me, ‘You are doing a great job, Michael.’”

Well, the sketches sure look good! Says Tim Nelson at MPR, “Downtown boosters on Monday unveiled prospects for reimagining the Minneapolis riverfront around the city’s historic post office. The plans centered on a so-called ‘design studio’ featuring the work of University of Minnesota architecture students, who looked at how the city could work around the nearly century-old Art Deco post office to reconnect the central business district with the Mississippi.” But let’s imagine they’re walking in an April sleet storm.

Polaris penalized. Where’s Mick Mulvaney when a company needs him? Says another MPR story, “Minnesota-based Polaris Industries received 150 reports of fires tied to its RZR recreational off-road vehicles, including one that resulted in the death of a 15-year old, before disclosing the hazards, the Consumer Product Safety Commission said Monday. That reporting failure, together with a failure to quickly disclose defects on some of its Ranger off-road vehicle models, led to a $27.25 million civil penalty, the agency said in a statement.”

Showdown over nuclear costs. For Green Tech Media, Emma Merchant writes, “Bills working through both chambers of the Minnesota legislature would grant the state’s largest utility, Xcel Energy, approval for nuclear facility cost recovery before the money is spent. Currently, the utility commission uses rate cases to analyze returns after the utility shells out. … While varied in their policy implications, all of these state cases have spurred debates about whether large-scale nuclear — which has proven itself to be very costly — should receive monetary support or subsidies, and in what form. In the first days of 2018 the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission killed a proposal from Energy Secretary Rick Perry to buoy nuclear (and coal) power plants. Another resilience proceeding is now underway at FERC to assess what benefit, if any, these plants should receive.”

50 miles. Says the AP, “A Winona man is accused of leading police on a chase in a stolen semi that went on for 50 miles through at least seven Minnesota communities. A criminal complaint charging Michael Kronebusch with assault with a dangerous weapon and fleeing from police says he rammed the semi into squad cars at least twice during the pursuit early Saturday morning. Authorities say the 42-year-old defendant was wearing a blue face mask and hat during the chase which reached speeds of nearly 70 mph. … The complaint says officers used a stun gun on the man to eventually pull him out of the semi and arrest him.”   

Electrolux impact. The St. Cloud Times Anna Haecherl writes: “1,800 jobs gone. $102.6 million in labor income lost. And a $670.1 million decline in economic output. That’s the total estimated impact of the ripple effect from Electrolux’s planned 2019 closure of its St. Cloud freezer manufacturing plant, according to an Emergency Economic Impact Analysis by the School of Public Affairs Research Institute (SOPARI) at St. Cloud State University in conjunction with University of Minnesota Extension Service.”

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