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Ramsey County commissioner’s nonprofit owes $160k to contractors, thousands in taxes


Commissioner Blake Huffman
Commissioner Blake Huffman
For the Star Tribune, Greg Stanley writes: “Ramsey County Commissioner Blake Huffman’s housing nonprofit is behind again on property taxes and also owes three contractors more than $160,000 for construction and design work dating back to 2017, according to six liens filed against the nonprofit over the past five months. Huffman said Thursday that he is shutting down the nonprofit and working to sell off its assets and pay its debt. … But records show that the nonprofit, Journey Home Minnesota, has been dogged by past-due payments for more than a year. Contractors last summer were threatening to walk off the nonprofit’s construction sites in Arden Hills, Vadnais Heights and the North Shore”

TC Jewfolk reports: “A Nazi-themed Sweetheart’s Dance proposal that was posted on a Minnetonka High School senior’s Finstagram page quickly went viral on Thursday afternoon leaving school district officials scrambling to get answers to angry parents. … The student’s Finsta account was deleted, but apparently started a new one, in which the bio reads: ‘I apologize for my stupid mistake. There was no intent to offend anyone. Dm me if you would like to discuss anything.’ … TC Jewfolk has independently confirmed that both students are seniors.”

In the Pioneer Press, we get this from Josh Verges, “Last May, police at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport intercepted a UPS package containing 18.3 pounds of marijuana addressed to the East Side home of Vang Xiong and his wife, May Yang. It was the seventh large package shipped to their home from California in five months, according to a recent filing in U.S. District Court. Local and federal agents delivered the package that day and then searched the house. They found small marijuana plants, 13 guns, a money counter, multiple cellphones, documentation of a California marijuana grow operation, … a drug ledger notebook and $30,839 in cash in a safe, which also contained 10 of the guns.”

MPR’s John Enger reports: “Reports of flu cases are coming into Minnesota’s health department from all corners of the state. In its weekly update on flu activity released Thursday, the state Department of Health announced that influenza activity is now considered widespread. Since the official start of the flu season in October, more than three dozen schools have experienced flu outbreaks. The predominant virus that is circulating is expected to cause less severe illness than the strain that put nearly 6,500 Minnesotans in hospital last year.”

Says KFGO-TV: “Wisconsin-based retail chain Shopko Stores is closing stores in North Dakota and Minnesota. The company has filed for bankruptcy protection, citing excessive debt and ongoing competitive pressure. It says it will close 38 more stores nationwide, after last month announcing plans to close about 40 of its more than 300 stores across the country.”

Says Jim Buchta for the Star Tribune, “Zillow’s footprint on the real estate scene in the Twin Cities is about to get a whole lot bigger. This fall the company plans to launch Zillow Offers, which aims to streamline the selling process by making sight-unseen cash offers to sellers who want to avoid the hassle of getting their house ready to sell. The Twin Cities is among five markets that will launch this fall, including Miami, Portland, Nashville and Orlando. Zillow Offers first launched in Phoenix last year, and has since opened up shop in Las Vegas, Atlanta, Denver, Charlotte and Raleigh.”

In the New York Daily News, Rachel DeSantis writes, “There is another side of Bob Dylan — caretaker. Dylan got a special shout-out this week in the obituary of his aunt Irene Goldfine, who died Monday at age 95. The iconic singer, who typically keeps his life shrouded in secrecy, was thanked, along with his younger brother David, for caring for her. ‘Irene was the life of the party and the last to leave and was known for her cooking,’ her obituary in the Star Tribune wrote. ‘Thank you to her nephews David and Bob for always taking extra good care of her.’

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