Daily Digest: Somalia’s 9/11

Good morning and welcome to Tuesday. Here’s the Digest.

1. Dozens of people attended a vigil to honor the dead and missing in Mogadishu Monday night in Minneapolis, after a terrorist attack Saturday killed more than 300 people in Mogadishu’s central business district. Another 400 are injured and scores more missing. Members of the Twin Cities Somali-American community called the truck bombing in Mogadishu on Saturday “Somalia’s 9/11,” and said it is a major setback in the country’s recovery from decades of civil war. Many Somali-Americans with family in Mogadishu have been busy texting, calling, and checking social media to ensure their loved ones are safe. (MPR News)

2. Gov. Mark Dayton met Monday with state and regional economic development officials to put the finishing touches on Minnesota’s low key bid to attract Amazon’s new headquarters. Many details of the proposal, which is due Thursday, remain tightly under wraps, although officials say it will rely on existing state programs aimed at helping businesses, possibly along with some local financial incentives. The Minnesota team says its pitch for the $5 billion project will be sent in a day early, and Minnesota Employment and Economic Development Commissioner Shawntera Hardy aid the state is simply trying to provide Amazon with some basic information. (MPR News)

3. Dayton signed off on a federal waiver Monday allowing for Minnesota’s new health care reinsurance program. Reinsurance works like a safety net for health insurers — if an insurance company has to cover people with high medical expenses, the state will help cover part of the cost. Because of the program, non-group, individual-market health insurance rates for next year will be about 20 percent lower than they otherwise would have been, insurers say. Still, some lawmakers wanted the governor to reject the waiver because in granting it, the Trump administration cut $369 million dollars in MinnesotaCare funding. Republican lawmakers are joining with Dayton to urge the Trump Administration to restore the funding. (Pioneer Press)

4. Some highlights of fundraising among candidates for the U.S. House and Senate for the third quarter of the year:  DFL  Sen. Amy Klobuchar raised about $1.19 million, has $4.95 million in reserve. Republican challenger Jim Newberger entered the race eight weeks ago and said he had taken in about $23,000. In the open 1st Congressional District Democrat Dan Feehan raised about a quarter million and finished the quarter with just shy of $200,000. The cash balance put him ahead of Joe Sullivan (nearly $125,000), attorney Rich Wright ($98,117), former state Sen. Vicki Jensen ($7,305) and three others who had yet to report recent totals. On the Republican side, businessman Jim Hagedorn raised roughly $102,000 and had about $237,000 left to spend. State Sen. Carla Nelson entered the race after the last financial reporting deadline. (MPR News)

5. Could the International Eelpout Festival be moving out of Walker? Organizers put out a Facebook post late yesterday saying “we want to clarify that event organizers continue to explore any and all options to ensure a feasible future for the festival.” It came after Tuesday’s Beltrami County Board of Commissioners’ agenda was released last week and showed that the board will review an application for a permit to hold the event on Lake Bemidji.  “We are committed to providing a top-notch experience for our host community, patrons and event sponsors and partners. We have been in discussions with Walker officials, as well as community leaders in other potential locations, to identify the best course of action for the long-term growth, community support and sustainability of this unique event,” the organizers said. “No final decisions have been made at this juncture, as the collective effort of numerous city/county offices demands a thorough and patient approach.” Stay tuned. (Bemidji Pioneer)

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