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U.S. Rep. McCollum introduces bill to ban mining near Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness

Plus: Walz unveils details of $2 billion state bonding package; 30,000 Comcast Xfinity customers to get refunds; Minnesotans now have right to use electronic monitoring devices in most senior care facilities; and more.

Rep. Betty McCollum
Rep. Betty McCollum
MPR’s Dan Kraker writes: “Minnesota Congresswoman Betty McCollum introduced legislation Wednesday to permanently ban copper, nickel and precious metals mining across more than 200,000 acres of the Superior National Forest in northeastern Minnesota. The bill would forbid new mining operations within the watershed of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, including a project proposed by Twin Metals Minnesota, which last month submitted plans to state and federal regulators to open an underground copper-nickel mine outside Ely, and just a couple miles from the southern edge of the BWCA.”

This from Jessie Van Berkel of the Star Tribune: “DFL Gov. Tim Walz unveiled the final phase of a $2 billion state bonding package Wednesday, laying out the details of an ambitious public works plan that Republican lawmakers immediately criticized as bloated and costly. The money would pay for a record number of local projects around the state, from repurposing a monorail track as a walkway at the Minnesota Zoo to repairing a sea wall and lakewalk in Duluth.”

At WCCO-TV, Reg Chapman reports, “More than 30,000 Minnesota Comcast Xfinity customers will receive refunds or debt relief as part of a settlement with Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison. It all stems from a 2018 lawsuit accusing Comcast of overcharging their customers. … Comcast Xfinity is accused of overcharging consumers for cable TV packages. ‘Comcast hid the full price that people had to pay. Comcast promised gift cards as a perk for signing up that they never delivered. Comcast charged customers for equipment and services the customers never signed up for’, Ellison said.”

In the Strib John Ewoldt and Nicole Norfleet say, “It will be the largest expansion in the history of Rosedale Center. And it will cost twice as much as the most recent renovation of the mall that included the 2018 opening of the Von Maur store. Rosedale’s operator, Jones Lang LaSalle, this week laid out new and more expansive details about a plan to add a ‘lifestyle center’ with apartments, hotels and offices to the region’s third-largest mall. The project will cost about $200 million, Lisa Crain, the mall’s general manager, said Wednesday.”

From the Star Tribune’s Chris Serres: “Now, after years of legal wrangling, state law is finally clear: Minnesotans have the right to use electronic monitoring devices in most senior care facilities, provided they notify the facility and obtain consent from residents being monitored. Effective this month, nursing homes and assisted-living facilities across the state are required to inform residents of their right to use the cameras.”

KSTP-TV reports: “Prospective homebuyers in Minneapolis will now get information on a house’s energy efficiency before they decide to buy it. The city of Minneapolis said it’s similar to knowing the miles per gallon of a car. Sellers already have a Truth in Sale of Housing evaluation, and that document will now also include an energy disclosure report showing the home’s “energy score.” The higher the score, the more efficient and resilient to weather extremes the property is.”

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For FOX 9, Bisi Onile-Ere reports: “The Nook in St. Paul’s Macalester-Groveland neighborhood is known as a small place with big burgers and one-dollar bills. ‘It’s kind of one of those, you put up a dollar bill and it says that you were here,’ said Michael Runyon, a co-owner of The Nook. Runyon says it’s a tradition that began a decade ago by a regular named Maggie who was moving overseas. … The basement ceiling and walls became littered with cash as customers literally left their mark. Now, those dollars will soon be making a difference. … restaurant staff recently spent hours removing more than $6,000 dollars from one side of the room. The money will be donated to the Alzheimer’s Foundation.”

For The Week, Matthew Walter writes, “The winner of Tuesday night’s Democratic primary debate was Sen. Amy Klobuchar…  Klobuchar will not receive the credit she deserves in large because her performance was not meant to appeal to the vast majority of people commenting on these debates. The question is not whether I and my colleagues find Klobuchar likeable. … It is whether she appeals to moderate Democrats who think that former Vice President Joe Biden is too old to run for (much less serve as) president, which is to say, the most important segment of the Democratic primary electorate.”

For The Nation Joan Walsh says, “I’m on record saying that Klobuchar won the December debate. And some of what made her shine there was evident in Des Moines. Unlike the other women in the race, Klobuchar seems to have some kind of Teflon that means she can attack other candidates without hurting herself—Warren, Harris, and Gillibrand have all paid, in different ways, for going on the offensive. But when Klobuchar demanded that Bernie Sanders ‘show how you’re going to pay for things,’ it underscored that she hadn’t asked about how to pay for the military action she supports.”

This also from WCCO-TV, “Early forecasts show that Minneapolis could get close to a foot of snow to start the weekend, at the end of what has been a week with multiple winter storms. Now Busch Beer is announcing a ‘Busch Snow Day.’ From now to mid-March, Busch will track snowfall in Minneapolis. For every inch of snow that falls until the first day of spring, customers are eligible to receive a dollar off Busch products via rebate, up to $30 in savings.

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