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U.S. House report criticizes USDA and meat industry over pandemic response

Plus: North Minneapolis residents divided over the Blue Line Light Rail extension project; Minnesota hospitals experiencing a shortage of contrast dye used in CT scans; Richfield a “no” on No Mow May; and more.

Ground beef is separated into one pound cuts as it makes its way down a conveyor belt to be packaged at a meat processing facility.
Ground beef is separated into one pound cuts as it makes its way down a conveyor belt to be packaged at a meat processing facility.
REUTERS/Alex Gallardo

The Associated Press is reporting the U.S. House’s Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis report reveals meat companies pushed to keep their plants open even though they knew workers were at high risk of catching the virus. Democratic Rep. Jim Clyburn, who leads the subcommittee, said USDA officials and the industry prioritized production and profits over the health of workers and communities as at least 59,000 workers caught the virus and 269 workers died.

Henry Pan writes at the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder that North Minneapolis residents are divided over a Blue Line Light Rail extension project that would extend beyond Target Field 12 miles north to Brooklyn Park, with stops in Crystal, Robbinsdale and Minneapolis along the way.

Beth Hawkins at the 74 Million takes a long view of the coming repercussions of this year’s Minneapolis teachers strike.

Rebecca Omastiak at KSTP is reporting that Minneapolis City Attorney Jim Rowader will not seek a second term. Rowader’s last day in office will be Monday, May 23.

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Paul Walsh at the Star Tribune is reporting that a group of weather experts were involved in a crash on Interstate 90 on Wednesday afternoon. Martha L. Llanos Rodriguez, who prepared weather forecasts for the metropolitan Mexico City area and contributed to the creation and operation of the severe weather early warning system for the 21 million people who live in or near Mexico City, did not survive the crash.

Michelle Wiley at MPR News says Minnesota is one of many states being hit with a shortage of contrast dye used in CT scans at hospitals. While hospitals aren’t canceling procedures, health care leaders say the shortage is creating some anxious days.

According to Alicia Eler at the Star Tribune, members of the northeast Minneapolis arts community are divided over the now-open “The Art of Banksy,” a touring exhibit not authorized by the English street artist. Concerns relate to high ticket prices and its opening just prior to Art-A-Whirl, which could take away potential business from local artists with studios nearby.

The city of Richfield, unlike neighboring Edina, will not be participating in No Mow May, via Hometown Source.