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Minnesota House Ethics Committee hearing against Rep. John Thompson delayed

Plus: homeless encampment in northeast Minneapolis grows; how St. Paul wants to spend its ARP money; Minnesota regulators reject CenturyLink request to modify landline rules; and more.

The latest Rep. John Thompson news. The Pioneer Press’ Dave Orrick reports: “The Minnesota House Ethics Committee Friday morning inched forward in hearing a complaint against embattled Rep. John Thompson, DFL-St. Paul, under accusations that he called a Republican House member a racist and should be disciplined. … The allegations are unrelated to a whirlwind of controversy Thompson is now in the middle of over former accusations of physical violence against women, but nonetheless were being closely watched inside the Capitol. … In the end, Friday’s hearing proved anticlimactic, as Thompson asked for — and was granted — a delay so he could get an attorney.”

On a homeless encampment in northeast Minneapolis. KSTP’s Ben Henry reports: “It’s been growing in size and number of people for almost a year and city officials say it’s getting close to being removed. … Nestled near Sheridan Memorial Park, since late summer 2020, there’s been a homeless encampment in northeast Minneapolis. … Property records show the area people have been living on belongs to the city, but people living there tell 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS they have no plans of moving. … ‘What’s the point of shutting us down when you’re just going to push us down the road and it’s just going to start up again anyways?’ Shane Bennett, who lives in the homeless encampment, said about the threat of city officials removing the encampment.”

What St. Paul plans for ARP cash. The Pioneer Press’ Frederick Melo reports: “The St. Paul City Council next week will consider setting aside $5.1 million from its federal American Rescue Plan dollars for six uses, ranging from housing the homeless to police patrols. The largest allocation, $2.7 million, will help the city attorney’s office whittle down a backlog of cases in its criminal division. … The city is scheduled to receive an unprecedented windfall of $166.6 million from the American Rescue Plan’s Coronavirus Local Fiscal Recovery Fund, a pandemic relief package that was signed into law by President Joe Biden on March 11. The funds are equivalent to a year’s worth of property tax levy. … The first half of the city’s allocation, $83.3 million, arrived May 21.”

Holding the line. The Star Tribune’s Mike Hughlett reporte: “Minnesota utility regulators Thursday unanimously rejected CenturyLink’s petition to abandon or modify key landline service rules, saying it would hurt consumers who depend on hard-wired telephones. … CenturyLink, Minnesota’s largest landline phone provider, petitioned the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission to jettison two long-standing regulations covering customer service response times.”

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In other news…

Hazardous runoff:New effort aims to hold back water to slow ‘flashy’ Minn. rivers” [MPR]

Competing early Sunday morning:St. Paul phenom Suni Lee soars into Olympics spotlight as a Hmong trailblazer” [Star Tribune]

Say hello to East Bde Maka Ska:Mpls. East Calhoun neighborhood to change name” [Star Tribune]