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Vaping on the rise among Minnesota 11th-graders

Plus: Minnesota teen Zach Sobiech’s life inspires movie; fugitive emu captured in Benton County; staff shortage in Minnesota prisons; and more.

E-cigarettes, also known as vapes, are battery-operated devices that heat nicotine-laced liquid to generate an aerosol that users inhale.
REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

Says Katie Galloto for the Strib, “The number of students vaping in Minnesota high schools is soaring. A new survey of students by the state’s Health Department shows that more than a quarter of Minnesota 11th-graders reported vaping at least once in the last month — a 54% increase from 2016, when the survey was last administered.”

For BringMeTheNews, Adam Uren says, “A big screen movie all about the inspirational life of Minnesota teen Zach Sobiech is shaping up, with Neve Campbell announced in one of the leading roles. Deadline reports that the ‘Scream’ star will play Zach’s mom Laura Sobiech, who wrote a book about her son’s battle with pediatric bone cancer called ‘Fly a Little Higher: How God Answered a Mom’s Small Prayer in a Big Way’. The movie ‘Clouds’ is based on that book, following Zach as he battles his second bout of Osteosarcoma, which ultimately claimed his life at the age of 17.”

For MPR, Andrew Krueger says, “Authorities in central Minnesota’s Benton County reported late Sunday that they’ve apprehended a wayward emu. … The Benton County Sheriff’s Office had reported Saturday night that the emu — a ‘habitual runaway,’ authorities said — was missing in the Foley area. … ‘Runaway fugitive emu has been located. We completed our questioning and released him to his owner,’ the sheriff’s office reported Sunday night in a Facebook post. ‘This emu has been placed on house arrest in attempts to avoid a repeat of this situation.’”

In the PiPress, Ryan Faircloth reports, “Minnesota prisons are coping with a chronic staff shortage by frequently asking — and often forcing — workers to pull double shifts. While prison officials say it’s necessary to cover vital posts, some officers say it contributes to burnout among the department’s ranks. The Minnesota Department of Corrections shelled out nearly $12.3 million for more than 262,000 hours of overtime in fiscal year 2019, according to DOC data.”

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Stribber Janet Moore writes, “The number of people departing from the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport is expected to grow from 18.5 million passengers to about 27 million over the next two decades. As more people opt to fly, airport planners and an enormous 29-member advisory panel, packed with tenant, business, tourism, government, passenger and community representatives, will try to suss out what trends will stick and how the airport will need to evolve.”

Also in the Strib, Dee DePass says, “About a week after Lamppa Manufacturing moved into a new plant, the owners realized the Iron Range company needed even more space. The city of Tower, 90 miles north of Duluth, had built the new space and was looking for a tenant for the other half of the building. After a rush of phone calls, city officials stopped their search. So within a month, the maker of high-efficiency wood furnaces and sauna stoves went from a cramped former creamery building to 9,000 square feet. … Now, city contractors will soon convert the second half of the building to Lamppa’s specifications. And by the end of the year, the company is hopeful it can ramp up production from a few hundred of its technologically advanced furnaces to perhaps thousands.”

In The Week, we learn, “South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) are still going after Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) in a continuation of the most recent Democratic presidential debate. Both candidates appeared on CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday, where they maintained their support for a public option in their health care plans. Neither were satisfied with the Warren campaign’s response efforts to clarify how the senator plans to pay for Medicare-for-All, either. Both Buttigieg and Klobuchar reiterated they are wary of any plan that would kick people off their private insurance. … Klobuchar, for her part, also said her plan, which also includes a non-profit public option, would ‘build’ rather than ‘trash’ ObamaCare. 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Amy Klobuchar says ‘it is not’ good enough that Elizabeth Warren is reviewing revenue options following criticism of her plan to pay Medicare for All.”