Child care union vote, synthetic drug suit tossed, Dayton 2014

Dayton orders union vote by child care providers

Gov. Mark Dayton issued an executive order this morning allowing for roughly 4,300 daycare providers in Minnesota to decide whether they should join a union (MPR News). The governor also stressed that even if a union is authorized, membership would be voluntary. The election will be conducted by the state Bureau of Mediation Services (AP).

“There is nothing in Minnesota law that provides the governor with the power to do the thing that he says he’s going to do,” said Sen. David Hann, R-Eden Prairie, who chairs the Senate health and human services committee.”And I think the real question for us is, what do you do with a governor who won’t follow the law?” (Pioneer Press)

The Big Story Blog: High cost of child care

Minnesota ranks as one of the costliest states in the nation when it comes to child care. We’ll look at the issues today surrounding how much child care costs in Minnesota and why. Join in.

Also on Minnesota Today

Judge tosses Duluth head shop lawsuit

A Hennepin County judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by Duluth’s Last Place on Earth and two other Minnesota synthetic drug retailers challenging a state law that bans certain versions of those drugs (Duluth News Tribune).

Gov. Dayton says he’ll run again in 2014

“Eight years, I think, is what it’s going to take to really streamline state government, make it more efficient to bring it up to the standards my family set in the past. I’m very fortunate to have the job. I love the job. I work very hard at it” said Dayton (KARE11).

Duluth police want Occupiers out this weekend

After two months of eating, sleeping and occupying the space in front of Duluth city hall, protesters are being told to leave or they will be assisted out by Duluth police (Northland News). Authorities declined to say if they will crackdown on OccupyMN protesters in Minneapolis.

Study: Fewer Minnesotans Ready to Retire

New data shows the number of Minnesotans who believe they are ready to retire is falling, but metro-area workers are not as anxious about their finances as other areas surveyed in the nationwide study (Fox9).

Secretive Cargill heir passes away

Cargill MacMillan Jr., secretive heir to the Cargill family fortune, passed away Monday at age 84, according to the Palm Spring Arts Museum, where MacMillan was a long-time benefactor. Although the cause of death is unknown at this time, he was in declining health (Forbes).

Contributions to Barack Obama by ZIP code

It probably wouldn’t surprise you that contributors in the metro area have given the most money to the re-election campaign of Barack Obama, so we decided to slice the data a little differently for this map (MinnPost).

Congressional wealth: How the Minnesota delegation stacks up

Three members of the MN delegation have an average net worth of more than $1 million. Sen. Franken, Rep. Bachmann and Rep. Cravaack top the MN delegation in wealth (Capitol View).

What a transmission control center looks like

Back in August, I had a chance to visit MISO’s St. Paul region transmission control center, where engineers and analysts monitor and manage the Upper Midwest’s electricity grid 24-7 (Midwest Energy).

Jon Stewart’s surprise when Bachmann sounds nearly reasonable

This is a Daily Show clip that you don’t see often: In appraising the latest GOP debate, Jon Stewart had a few semi-agreeable things to say about the foreign policy remarks of candidates he frequently mocks, Michele Bachmann and Rick Santorum (The Atlantic).

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