Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Paul Strain said his family supports his college career, emotionally at least. But when it comes to money, he told U.S. Sen. Al Franken Monday, he needs to look for federally supported programs.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota legislators face a dilemma: Can they spend money from a tight budget to eliminate poverty by 2020? If they spend money now, Rep. Carlos Mariani, DFL-St. Paul, said, more people would go to work and the state's economy would improve. But since lawmakers are not likely to start many new spending programs in light of a several-billion budget deficit, Rep.
ST. LOUIS PARK, Minn. - Amy Klobuchar needed to outfit her apartment when she moved to Washington as a U.S. senator. So the Minnesota Democrat headed to a nearby store "looking for cheap furniture" and bought an assemble-it-yourself "fake antique" cabinet. "It smelled weird" when she removed it from the box, she said. However, it began to become pungent as her first Washington summer began to heat up.
ST. PAUL - A Minnesota Administration Department opinion tightens the state open meetings law. The opinion by Administration Commissioner Sheila M. Reger indicates that the Metro Gang Strike Force Advisory Board violated state law when a Minneapolis police official sent an e-mail to all board members about a statement he wanted to issue to the Minneapolis-based Star Tribune.
ST. PAUL - National economists say the recession technically is over, but Minnesota economic leaders say workers have not felt an improvement. A report released Thursday showed 10,300 Minnesota jobs disappeared last month, for a total of 120,300 in the past year. The August job loss wiped out a 7,700 job gain reported a month earlier. At the same time, the Department of Employment and Economic Development reported unemployment fell 0.1 percent to 8 percent in August, the second straight month joblessness dropped.
ST. PAUL - A group fighting sexual abuse by Catholic clergy wants people who have been abused as far back as the 1960s to contact law enforcement officials as more allegations surface about a brother who taught in several Upper Midwest schools. Bob Schwiderski of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests on Tuesday called on anyone who may have been abused at a church retreat along the St. Croix River north of the Twin Cities to contact law enforcement authorities and his organization.
FALCON HEIGHTS, Minn. - Karen Dvergsten reflected on the meaning of 4-H amid noisy sheep at the Minnesota State Fair. It is more than the literal meaning of 4-H: head, heart, hands and health. "It is very important for building a work ethic," the Roseau County woman said.
ST. PAUL - Minnesota leaders are bracing for a fiscal fallout as federal policymakers debate health-care reform proposals costing $1 trillion. Most state governments, including Minnesota, faced huge deficits as they wrote new budgets this year.
ST. PAUL - Don't plan to attend a health-care reform meeting with U.S. Reps. Tim Walz and John Kline standing side by side. Kline's office questions the real reason for the Walz invitation for a joint public meeting. "That we received his invitation on the same day it was released to the press leads me to question if there was ever a good faith intent on Mr. Walz's behalf," Kline spokesman Troy Young said.