Chlorine leak at Prairie Island, Bachmann’s next move, fracking rush is on

Prairie island nuclear plant declares alert due to chlorine leak

Republican Eagle: “Operators at Prairie Island Nuclear Generating Plant declared an alert at 3:53 a.m. today after workers discovered sodium hypochloride, commonly known as chlorine bleach, leaking from a tank in the screen house. The chemical is used to treat water that is brought into the plant for cooling.”

Bachmann’s next move

Voters assess Bachmann’s future in 6th District

MPR News: “Michele Bachmann’s decision to drop out of the contest for Republican presidential nominee brought mixed reviews from her constituents in Minnesota’s 6th Congressional District.”

Saint Cloud Times: “Kay Wolsborn, a political scientist at the College of St. Benedict and St. John’s University, said: ‘It’s all about redistricting at this point. ‘Everything’s on hold to see: What are the demographics of the district she would run in?’ Steven Schier, a political scientist at Carleton College in Northfield, agrees. ‘The lines have to be drawn in the right way for her to stay in the House,’ Schier said. ‘She needs a reliably conservative district in order to win.'”

New York Times: “‘There seems to be a pretty widespread sense that Bachmann has been giving serious consideration to not running,’ said Larry Jacobs, a political science professor at the University of Minnesota, based onhis conversations with Republican figures around Mrs. Bachmann’s Stillwater base.”

The maps right now

AP: “The Minnesota GOP plan would keep all eight of the state’s members of Congress in their current districts, while the DFL’s plan would make significant changes. Most controversially, it would put Minnesota’s only two female representatives — Republican Michele Bachmann and DFLer Betty McCollum — in the same district. A McCollum aide has criticized that proposal as ‘bizarre.'”

Fracking fights

Winona County Board to decide on ‘fracking’ moratorium next week

Rochester Post Bulletin: “Questions linger among concerned citizens, even as applicants argue that all the county’s requirements have been met.”

The rush is on!

Jim Riddle: “With five more sand mine applications submitted to Winona County, it is clear that the sand rush is on. … Let’s slow down and be thoughtful. It is in all of our best interests.”

Bluffs, frac sand mines and taxes

Joe Morse: “Protecting the Winona county bluffs consumed much time and energy from staff, citizens and elected officials in recent years. How could frac sand mines affect the bluffs so important to the county’s identity? The unanswered questions mount up.”

Also making news on MN Today

Why Best Buy is going out of business…gradually

Forbes: “Electronics retailer Best Buy is headed for the exits. I can’t say when exactly, but my guess is that it’s only a matter of time, maybe a few more years.”

Foley’s deal with private company for security put on hold

Saint Cloud Times: “A plan by Foley leaders to save money by having the city patrolled by a private security company has been blocked by the Peace Officers Standards Training Board on the advice of the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office, according to an announcement by the city Wednesday night.”

State GOP: New day, old troubles

Politics in Minnesota: “A number of difficult questions remain about the state of GOP finances. Last week’s revelation that the party is likely on the hook for more than $2 million in unpaid bills — roughly twice as much as previously thought — coupled with the resignation of Secretary/Treasurer David Sturrock, further complicated matters. Many activists would like to see a full-blown audit of the books so that there’s confidence moving forward regarding the exact state of the party’s finances. But as Republican National Committeeman Jeff Johnson, who helped lead an internal review of the books, pointed out at Saturday’s gathering, outside audits aren’t free. “It won’t be cheap,” he warned.”

Former Strib editor stood on principle, and larger than life

Eric Ringham: For the generation of young reporters and editors who entered the journalism business during Watergate, Chuck Bailey was the perfect editor in chief. He came from the East Coast and brought with him an air of old money. He could wear a bow tie and make it work.

8th District DFL congressional field narrows with Fanning out

“As much as I don’t like it, and as much as I think voters don’t like it,elections keep starting earlier and earlier. And it’s getting more and more expensive. … We just came to the conclusion that we didn’t have the resources to make it work by the February caucuses,” Daniel Fanning told the Duluth News Tribune.

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