Schools cancel classes as snowstorm hits Minnesota

MnDOT

The Star Tribune’s Mara Klecker writes: “The first swing in this week’s winter one-two punch began Sunday with up to half a foot of snow falling across the Twin Cities, soon to be followed by a deep freeze. As the snow accumulated into the evening, several metro-area communities declared parking restrictions and Minneapolis and St. Paul Public Schools canceled all classes and activities on Monday. Dozens of other school districts across the state called off classes or announced delayed starts.”

In the Star Tribune, Erin Golden writes, “Gov. Tim Walz is aiming to overhaul the way Minnesota funds its schools, putting more responsibility on the state and making local referendums ‘either rare or extinct.’ As he finalizes his first budget, the DFL governor said he’s focused on reversing what he sees as a disturbing trend: a leveling off in state support for education that’s putting more pressure on local funding, and widening gaps between wealthy and poor, metro and greater Minnesota schools.”

KSTP-TV reports: “Tuesday is a big day for Native Americans in Minnesota. The House of Representatives Public Safety Committee will hold the first hearing to consider legislation to create a Task Force on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women. … [State Rep. Mary] Kunesh-Podein is proposing legislation to create a Task Force on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women. Kunesh-Podein hopes the task force will get state, federal and tribal agencies on the same page to remove barriers and help them communicate with each other and create a database to track missing and murdered indigenous women.”

From Meg Britton-Mehlisch of Southwest Publications: “We’ve heard of couch surfers, but this winter’s combination of brutal temperature lows and minimal snow appears to have created a different kind of couch athlete on Minnesota’s lakes: the couch skater. The elusive sight appeared before a lucky few Minnetonkans last week. Completing one perfect routing, a couch skater — pulled by a tractor — slide gracefully across the ice just outside of Excelsior Bay, on Lake Minnetonka.” Video included.

For MPR, Andrew Krueger says, “Temperatures in northern Minnesota dropped to near 50 below zero on Sunday morning — that’s air temperature, not counting the wind. The National Weather Service in Duluth relayed a report of 49 degrees below zero at Kabetogama in northern St. Louis County. A few miles away, a weather station near Ash Lake reported 48 below. Other morning lows included 46 below at International Falls, Babbitt, Celina, and Sea Gull Lake on the Gunflint Trail; and 45 below at Embarrass and Brimson.”

And Ron Trenda at MPR adds, “Low temps late Tuesday night and early Wednesday are expected to be in the 20s below zero in southern Minnesota, with 30s below and possibly some 40s below zero in the north. Wednesday highs will be incredibly cold … .”

In the Strib, Tim Harlow writes, “Street Smart Rental has developed what it calls a Smart Arrow Board. When a there’s a flashing arrow directing motorists to an adjacent lane, a black box affixed to the sign broadcasts the lane closure information to MnDOT’s Regional Transportation Management Center in Roseville. That information then automatically gets posted to 511, and a construction icon pops up on the map giving travelers real-time information about when and where lanes are closed. Minnesota was the first state to pilot the Smart Arrow Board widely. Last fall, MnDOT used the technology on about 20 trucks in the metro area, said MnDOT’s Director of Traffic Operations Brian Kary.”

 

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