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Total COVID case count in Minnesota surpasses 1.5 million

Plus: Director Spike Lee on George Floyd; the Ramsey County Board of Commissioners seeks a 1.5 percent salary increase; General Mills is selling the Helper and Suddenly Salad brands; and more.

A positive COVID-19 test result seen at a mobile testing site.
A positive COVID-19 test result seen at a mobile testing site.
REUTERS/Octavio Jones

Via WCCO: Health officials in Minnesota reported another 1,522 virus cases on Wednesday, pushing the state’s total positive case count over 1.5 million since the onset of the pandemic. According to the Minnesota Department of Health’s data, there have been 1,500,556 cases of COVID-19, including 71,881 reinfections since March of 2020, along with 12,610 deaths.

Matt Sepic at MPR News talks with high school English teacher Marcia Howard who is leading a protest occupation at George Floyd Square: “The only thing that seems to change anything in the city of Minneapolis is collective action. We’re not burning down Lake Street. We’re not walking down University Avenue. We’re standing in place, in situ, where a Black man was lynched in public. And we’re saying we’re not moving.

In related news, Minneapolis will be unveiling a commemorative street sign at 38th and Chicago — where Floyd was detained and killed — naming it George Perry Floyd Square. Floyd’s brother and aunt will attend along with City Council President Andrea Jenkins, from KSTP.

Charles Hallman at the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder interviewed Oscar-winning writer/director Spike Lee, who was in town for VeeCon 2022. Lee on remembering George Floyd: “Here I am in Minnesota where our brother George Floyd was taken from us. I can’t remember all the names now. Think about the long line of Black and Brown brothers and sisters murdered by police, and then what happened in Buffalo [on May 14 when 10 Blacks were killed inside a local supermarket].”

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Frederick Melo at the Pioneer Press is reporting the Ramsey County Board of Commissioners will host a public hearing on June 14 on their proposed 1.5 percent salary increase for 2023. The new salaries would be $99,052 for six of the seven county board members and $102,149 for the county board chair.

Brooks Johnson at the Star Tribune has a report that General Mills is selling the Helper and Suddenly Salad brands for $610 million as the food giant lessens its position in the boxed-meal category it helped create. The divestiture is part of the Golden Valley company’s “accelerate” strategy to put more focus on high-growth brands, categories and regions.