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Minnesota unemployment rate drops to 7.7% for July

Plus: George Floyd mural vandalized; Minneapolis sued over policing levels; St. Paul schools to close for Election Day; and more.

Photo by Rob Lambert on Unsplash
Unemployment down. KARE’s Dana Thiede reports: “The employment picture appears to be brightening a bit in Minnesota, with the state jobless rate dropping to 7.7% in July, down from 8.6% one month earlier. … New numbers released Thursday by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) show that 32,500 new payroll jobs were added last month on a seasonally adjusted basis, a jump of 1.2%.”

Ugh. WCCO reports: “The famous mural painted at the intersection where George Floyd was killed was covered with a tarp Wednesday night. … A witness says a vandal went to 38th Street and Chicago Avenue in south Minneapolis earlier this week and sprayed black paint over Floyd’s eyes and face. … Residents chased him out of the area and are now trying to find artists to restore the mural.”

Not enough cops in Minneapolis? The Star Tribune’s Liz Navratil reports: “A group of Minneapolis activists has sued the City Council and Mayor Jacob Frey, saying efforts to defund the city’s police department are contributing to violence in the city. … The suit, brought Monday by eight Minneapolis activists, cites an increase in shootings and homicides, as well as the vandalism of the Fifth Police Precinct as evidence that ‘Minneapolis is in a crisis.’ … [Attorney James V.F.] Dickey alleges the city is operating below the level of officers mandated by the City Charter.

Since there are polling places inside schools. The Pioneer Press’ Josh Verges reports:St. Paul Public Schools students will be learning from home on Election Day, even if the district returns to in-person classes by then. … The school board on Tuesday approved a late change to the district’s 2020-21 calendar, joining a growing number of districts that are keeping students out of school on Election Day for safety reasons.”

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Interesting story on Minnesota’s Red Lake and Indigenous-led land management from … uh … clothing manufacturer Patagonia. Nick Martin writes: “A walleye is a precious thing. Between two-to-three feet long, sporting a pair of fins and a green and yellow shimmer, a walleye is a thing of beauty as it swims through a northern lake. … It’s also a delectable dish, whether grilled, smoked or sautéed. … But the walleye is more than a morsel. It’s the centerpiece of a centuries-old fishing and food production industry. It’s the backbone of a sovereign nation’s economy. It’s the childhood memories of summers spent standing on the sunbathed shores of Red Lake, rod in hand, waiting for a nibble. And it all exists today because a tribal nation made it its responsibility not only to catch, fillet and sell the fish, but to protect them and the water they swim in for generations to come. … The Red Lake supports not just the walleye, perch and crappie that share its waters, but the land beyond its reach. The earth, much like the lake itself, is rich with life and abundant in towering lowland trees, such as ash, maple and basswood. And there, living beside them all, are the citizens of the Red Lake Nation.

In other news…

Breathing room:Delta Air Lines to continue blocking middle seats through 2021” [KSTP]

Moving to more distance learning:Roseville schools makes changes to plans ahead of new school year” [KARE]

Big plan:Indoor Tiny House Community For Homeless Planned In Minneapolis” [WCCO]

Plate mail can’t block viruses:Minnesota Renaissance Festival cancels 2020 season, citing coronavirus pandemic” [Pioneer Press]

20% Theatre lowers the curtain:Mpls. theater — home to nonbinary artists — to close after 15 years” [MPR]