Lawmaking time, fighting racism in Twin Ports, Beargrease alternative emerges

State Legislature Reconvenes

Gov., legislators share goal to get Minnesotans back to work

MPR News: Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican legislative leaders agree that job creation will be their shared priority for the 2012 session, which gets underway Tuesday.

DFL leaders: Our Minnesota agenda

DFL: “Jobs are our priority. Our state does not want distractions” (Star Tribune)

Our view: Minnesota Legislature back at it

Duluth News Tribune: “On Tuesday, they return, Minnesota’s 67 state senators and 134 House members; they get back to the task for which they were elected: lawmaking. They didn’t do it so well last year when a budget battle reinforced partisan divides and led to the state’s longest-ever government shutdown.”

Dayton to Vikings: Metrodome site is only option this session

Star Tribune: “Gov. Mark Dayton told the Minnesota Vikings on Monday that the only workable site this year for a new stadium is the Metrodome, apparently bringing the team’s long search for a new home back to where it started.”

Legislators hope for short session

Capitol Chat: “Part of the reason a short session is predicted is so those running for re-election can campaign. And with new district maps to be released Feb. 21, that could speed things up even more as lawmakers feel the need to check out their new districts.”

Local leaders ask state for more flexibility

Ground Level: “Leaders from Minnesota’s cities, counties and school districts have banded together to plead for more flexibility from the state to let them try new ways of delivering local services.”

Local officials, legislators prepare for new state session

The Faribault Daily News reports that mandate reform is a pressing issue. “More than 85 percent of Rice County’s activity is mandated by the state — and after trimming staff consistently for nearly four years, resources are now strained because while mandates remain in place, funding does not.”

Dill’s bill on Minnesota wolf season gets first hearing Thursday

Ely Echo: “Just as the state begins to take over management of Minnesota’ wolf population, a local lawmaker will be holding a hearing in St. Paul. Rep. David Dill (DFL-Crane Lake) has put together a bill to allow wolf hunting and trapping seasons starting this year.”

Legislative session will start with a bang

MinnLawyer: “Rep. Tony Cornish, R-Good Thunder, introduced a bill that will enhance penalties for assaulting or causing the death of a prosecuting attorney and a bill that will authorize county attorneys to carry firearms on duty. Both will be discussed in a house floor session Thursday afternoon.”

Big Story Blog: What will Minnesota’s 2012 Legislature deliver?

More Legislative news from MN Today.

Also on MN Today

St. Croix bridge bill clears Senate

MPR News: “The U.S. Senate Monday night passed a bill authorizing a replacement for the aging Stillwater lift bridge over the St. Croix River. The bill, sponsored by DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar, passed the Senate with no debate under a procedure known as unanimous consent that is used for legislation considered uncontroversial.”

Franken responds on internet piracy bills

“If we don’t protect our intellectual property, international criminals – as well as legitimate businesses like payment processors and ad networks – will continue to profit dishonestly from the work these Americans are doing every day,” wrote Sen. Al Franken. “And that puts these millions of jobs at serious risk.” (Capitol View)

Twin Ports coalition launches anti-racism campaign

Duluth News Tribune: “A new anti-racism campaign focusing on what white people can do to help reduce racial disparities in the Twin Ports will make its public debut today.”

Tim Pawlenty, Mitt Romney’s attack dog

Washington Post: “Belatedly, Pawlenty has found his venom sac. And on Monday morning, he poured it on Newt Gingrich during a conference call with reporters.”

Rep. Ellison: Time to get corporate money out of politics

Rep. Ellison writes in HuffPo: “Saturday marked the second anniversary of the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission Supreme Court decision. This decision allows corporations to use their general treasury funds to pay for political advertisements that expressly call for the defeat or election of a candidate.”

Sleep-malady drugs now in short supply in Twin Cities

Star Tribune: “The sudden shortage is disrupting the lives of hundreds of patients.”

Bilked by agent, family loses nest egg

Forum of Fargo Moorhead: “On a dairy farm in Barnes County, Keith Radke’s parents toiled for 25 years to save for retirement and send their son to college. They were proud, frugal people who paid their bills on time and skipped vacations to milk the cows, he said.”

Canceled Beargrease opens door for revival of another sled-dog race

Duluth News Tribune: “The cancellation of this year’s John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon has prompted two Gunflint Trail businesses to revive the Mail Run Dog Sled Race, which was an annual event along the Gunflint Trail in the late 1970s before the Beargrease began.”

New reports cast doubt on bio-cremation process, Cloquet Council votes ‘no’

Pine Journal: “Reasons cited by Councilors for voting against the bio-cremation resolutions ranged from disputed scientific evidence regarding proper operational standards and the possibility that prions could be released into the sanitary sewer system (if inadequately treated) and from there into Lake Superior.”

Norman County East now waits for Ulen-Hitterdal’s decision to merge programs

Forum of Fargo Moorhead: “Faced with dwindling enrollment that threatens to wipe out some sports by attrition, the Norman County East School District will look to a partnership with neighboring Ulen-Hitterdal to bolster its ranks.”

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