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Frey announces new search warrant policy for Minneapolis

Plus: New Prague school district head says investigation didn’t substantiate allegations of racist taunts at girls basketball game; no agreement on replenishing Minnesota’s unemployment insurance trust fund; state Senate votes to approve audit of Southwest LRT; and more.

Mayor Jacob Frey
Mayor Jacob Frey
MinnPost photo by Peter Callaghan

A WCCO-TV story says, “Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey announced Monday afternoon a proposed policy that will significantly change the police department’s warrant and entry policy, including the prohibition of no-knock, no-announcement search warrants. ‘This is the most forward-thinking policy in the country,’ Frey said in a press conference. Frey says the proposed policy change includes applying for these types of warrants in another jurisdiction.”

In the Star Tribune, Paul Walsh writes: “The head of the New Prague school district said Monday that an investigation couldn’t substantiate allegations that its fans made loud monkey noises at a girls high school basketball game on Feb. 15 while hosting Robbinsdale Cooper High School. Announcement of the findings was met with disappointment and disbelief from the Robbinsdale school district superintendent, who accused New Prague officials of dismissing the taunting that students and staffers say was directed at the Robbinsdale team, which includes athletes of color.”

Tim Pugmire writes for MPR: “There’s still no agreement on replenishing the state’s unemployment insurance trust fund and repaying money owed to the federal government. DFL Gov. Tim Walz and top House and Senate leaders met again Monday to try to reach a deal. State officials insist that Tuesday is the deadline to act to avoid tax increases on employers. … Minnesota’s high unemployment rate and benefit payout during the COVID-19 pandemic drained the trust fund. State officials were forced to borrow from the feds.”

Josh Verges writes in the Pioneer Press: “The deadline deal that averted a St. Paul teacher strike last week featured $3,000 bonuses, 2 percent raises and modest class-size reductions, according to documents the union shared with its members. … When the district kicked off negotiations last fall, it said it could afford no more than $7.6 million in new spending over the two-year contract. Superintendent Joe Gothard wouldn’t discuss details of the final agreement but said in an interview Tuesday that the district ‘stayed at our financial parameters.’ Union President Leah VanDassor said on the night of the deal that actually, the district ‘moved off’ of its wage parameters.”

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Also at MPR, this from Matt Sepic, “A state appeals court ruled Monday that Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey is not required to employ a minimum number of police officers. In August 2020, a group of Minneapolis residents, including former council member Don Samuels, sued the mayor and City Council alleging they failed to follow a charter provision that requires at least 17 officers per 10,000 residents. … A three-judge panel says the charter requires the City Council to ‘continuously fund’ a police force of a minimum size, but there is ‘no clear duty under the charter for the mayor to continuously employ’ that minimum number.”

The AP reports: The Minnesota Senate voted unanimously Monday to approve an audit of a more than $2 billion light rail line that’s been marred by delays and huge cost overruns since the transit project broke ground in 2019. The bill allocates $200,000 to the Legislative Auditor’s office to conduct a special review of the Southwest Light Rail Transit project, which is shaping up as one of the most expensive public works projects in state history. The audit will include evaluations of project costs and overruns, changes to the project schedule, the qualifications of project management staff and quality of construction, among other criteria.

This at KMSP-TV, “A 2-year-old boy is in critical but stable condition Monday morning after he was shot in the face in Minneapolis. According to Minneapolis police, officers were called to the 1500 block of Lasalle Avenue in Loring Park just after 4:30 a.m. Monday on a report of a child bleeding from the face due to a stabbing or gunshot.  Officers arrived and found the 2-year-old boy with a gunshot wound to the face.  … MPD says officers were provided ‘limited information as to how the gunshot wound occurred.’”

Says Melissa Turtinen for BringMeTheNews, “One neighborhood in Minnesota has made it on the list of top 100 places to live in the United States, according to 2022 rankings published by Niche. The Mac-Groveland neighborhood in St. Paul came in at No. 47 on the national ranking and No. 1 in Minnesota.  No other Minnesota cities made it in the top 100 for the national ranking.”

The AP reports: “A Grafton (Wisconsin) dentist has been convicted of health care fraud for breaking patients’ teeth and then claiming they needed crowns in an insurance scam. U.S. Attorney Richard Frohling announced that a federal jury on Thursday convicted 61-year-old Scott Charmoli of five counts of health care fraud and two counts of making false statements related to health care matters. He faces up to 60 years in prison when he’s sentenced in June.”

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