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Frontline health care workers reach tentative contract agreement with HealthPartners

Plus: MPR News examines Minneapolis’ whack-a-mole approach to homeless encampments; Northrop Auditorium has reopened; Minnesota lawmakers consider redesigning the state flag; Lawless Distilling closes; and more.

HealthPartners Clinic, Minneapolis
HealthPartners Clinic, Minneapolis
MinnPost photo by Peter Callaghan

Era Atre at KARE-11 is reporting nearly 1,800 members of SEIU Healthcare Minnesota and Iowa reached an agreement to protect “industry-leading” healthcare benefits from cuts or concessions, after spending 21 hours at the bargaining table with HealthPartners.

Grace Birnstengel at MPR News introduces a five-part series on Minneapolis’ lack of progress around homeless encampments: “While the city has increased its production of affordable housing during Frey’s tenure, his administration has been under much scrutiny for its zero-tolerance stance on encampments. The city has been taking a whack-a-mole approach — kicking people out of camps and throwing everything in them away, only for people to have to acquire basic necessities all over again and pitch a tent somewhere else, sometimes just blocks away.”

Christopher Snowbeck at the Star Tribune has a piece on the community meeting in Grand Rapids regarding the possible merger between Sanford and Fairview, with some University of Minnesota medical students voicing opposition while numerous residents saying Sanford offers economic stability and has delivered on previous merger promises in Bemidji.

Josh Skluzacek at KSTP-TV reports the University of Minnesota has reopened Northrop Auditorium just under three weeks after a partial roof collapse.

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KARE-11 staff is mourning the loss of Andy Trowbridge. He started as an intern in the KARE-11 sports department nearly 15 years ago, and never left, going on to produce weekend and weeknight sportscasts and the “Vikings Extra” show. Andy also worked closely with Randy Shaver as the producer of “Prep Sports Extra” during the high school football season. Trowbridge was 35.

Caroline Cummings at WCCO-TV reports Minnesota lawmakers are considering a proposal that would create a 16-member commission to redesign the state flag.

Maury Glover at FOX9 interviews artist Dan Kelly about turning the snow mounds that plows leave into works of art.

Tommy Wiita at Bring Me the News is reporting that Lawless Distilling at 2619 28th Ave. S. in south Minneapolis has announced its closure after operating for nearly 10 years.