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Minnesota House votes down bill to pay for Chauvin trial security

Plus: Frey announces repeal of Minneapolis’ indoor bar restrictions; Google announces plans to open office in Rochester; South Dakota attorney general charged with three misdemeanors for killing man with his car; and more.

Derek Chauvin booking photo
Derek Chauvin booking photo
Minnesota Department of Corrections/Handout via REUTERS

For MPR, Brian Bakst writes: “The Minnesota House rejected a bill Thursday that seeks to create a state fund to reimburse police departments from outside Minneapolis if they’re called in to help prevent civil unrest around the upcoming trial of Derek Chauvin. …The security funding measure had stalled out due to a lack of support earlier in the week, but police organizations urged lawmakers to try again. The coalition of sheriffs, police chiefs and police officer union members said the safety fund  bill provided ‘an opportunity to work together, and policing in the coming months will be harder without its passage.’ Nevertheless, the bill failed by a vote of 71-63, with seven DFLers joining all Republicans in opposition.”

Related. Sarah Mearhoff writes for the Forum News Service: “Immediately after the lawmakers voted down the bill, House Majority Leader Ryan Winkler, DFL-Golden Valley, motioned to reconsider, to loud protest by lawmakers who were voting remotely due to the coronavirus pandemic. House Speaker Melissa Hortman, DFL-Brooklyn Park, upheld Winkler’s motion, reviving the bill. Winkler promptly then tabled it, again to many vocal protests.”

At KSTP-TV, Kyle Brown says, “Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey announced on Thursday that he is repealing an emergency regulation that closed indoor bar areas amid steadily declining COVID-19 infection rates in Minneapolis. In a statement, Frey’s office cited ramped up vaccination efforts, four straight weeks of COVID-19 positivity rates below 5% in Minneapolis and no new outbreaks in bars or restaurants over the past week as reason enough for dialing back Emergency Regulation 2020-17, which he signed in late July.”

In the Star Tribune, Liz Navratil writes: “The latest gauge of public opinion over a plan to replace the Minneapolis Police Department revealed a deeply divided city, with nearly 100 speakers at a public hearing Thursday offering passionate and competing views. The City Council invited the public to sound off on its latest plan to ask voters in November whether they want to create a new public safety department. But the beginning of the three-hour hearing was dominated by opponents, who said the proposed charter amendment was vague and didn’t do enough to fix the problems that led to the killing of George Floyd last May. … As the hearing progressed, more people began speaking in favor of the new proposal, saying past efforts to change the department haven’t done enough to stop police from using force on people of color or protesters raising concerns about brutality.”

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For MPR, Matt Sepic reports,A couple from Rochester, Minn., wanted on federal arson charges connected to last spring’s riots that followed the police killing of George Floyd, was apprehended in Mexico, the U.S. Attorney’s office in Minneapolis said Thursday. Jose Angel Felan Jr., 34, is accused of setting fire to a Goodwill thrift store, 7 Mile Sportswear and Gordon Parks High School along University Avenue in St. Paul on May 28, 2020. Court documents also say Felan was ‘captured on video in temporal and physical proximity’ to fires set at a Napa Auto Parts store and Speedway gas station nearby, though he is not charged with setting those fires.”

Says the Star Tribune’s Christopher Snowbeck, “Technology giant Google announced Thursday it plans to open in Rochester the company’s first office in Minnesota, a development that company officials said will bolster an ongoing partnership with the Mayo Clinic. Located at Collider Coworking in the Conley-Maass-Downs building in downtown Rochester, the space is scheduled to open later this year.”

For KARE-TV Julie Nelson reports, “There are nearly two million podcasts floating around Apple’s iTunes and Spotify ready for you to download right now. … Ironically, it is the fact there are so many podcasts, so many voices vying to be heard that gave Father Mike Schmitz from the diocese of Duluth, the idea to create another one. … He decided others might be feeling the same way, so he pitched an idea to multimedia Catholic publisher, Ascension. ‘I went to Ascension, the publisher, and said would you be open to this idea of just me reading the Bible in the course of one year with a little bit of commentary? And they said, ‘We’ve been wanting this for years we just didn’t know when or who,’ he said.”

At The National Review, Kevin Williamson writes, “Crime, homeless encampments, riots, crime, loopy left-wing government, crime, litter, violent protests, imperious left-wing activists seeing off mainstream liberal Democrats, boarded-up shops downtown, a vicious social-media-driven politics of personal destruction, crime, crime, and crime, to say nothing of the crime — today’s Minneapolis is where Minnesota Nice turns into Minnesota Nasty. Let’s talk about the crime first. Everybody does. … Robberies, assaults, thefts, carjackings, and the like are up across the city.”

Says an AP story, “South Dakota’s Republican attorney general was charged Thursday with three misdemeanors for striking and killing a man with his car last summer, avoiding more serious felony charges in a case that raised questions about how the state’s top law enforcement official first reported the crash. Jason Ravnsborg could face up to 30 days in jail and up to a $500 fine on each charge: careless driving, driving out of his lane and operating a motor vehicle while on his phone. … Nick Nemec, [Joseph] Boever’s cousin, said Thursday he was ‘disappointed, but not surprised’ at the charges.”