Minnesota News Briefs: Lawmakers prepare for special sessionMinnesota News
-- It's expected a special working group will meet at the Capitol early this week to begin preparing for a special session on flood relief planned for later this month.
(St. Paul, MN) -- It's expected a special working group will meet at the Capitol early this week to begin preparing for a special session on flood relief planned for later this month.
Willmar State Senator Joe Gimse says they're still waiting for a final damage number. Top lawmakers have indicated the special session will likely deal with assistance to local governments for repairing flood-damaged infrastructure -- but probably not individual assistance for homeowners and businesses. The federal government denied a request for that assistance but Governor Dayton has appealed.
Funeral services are this afternoon (1pm) at First Lutheran Church in Marshall for Drake Bigler, the infant son of Southwest Minnesota State University men's basketball coach Brad Bigler. The five-month-old boy was killed when a drunk driver hit their SUV. Brad Bigler and his wife Heather's grandmother were also badly inured in the crash. A "Pray For Bigs" social media campaign has been launched in support of the Bigler family. Prosecutors have charged 38-year old Dana Schoen of Starbuck with criminal vehicular homicide and DWI. Many voices are being heard after a family tragedy in southwestern Minnesota. The "Pray For Bigs" social media campaign has been launched in support of Brad Bigler and his family.
U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (DFL-Plymouth) is among those condemning a shooting in suburban Milwaukee which claimed the lives of six people on Sunday. What police call an "act of domestic terrorism" happened in a Sikh temple. The gunman, described as a white male in his 40's, was killed by police in a shootout outside the temple. Klobuchar issued a statement late Sunday saying: "The freedom to worship is a cherished right in America, and no one should have to fear for their safety in a temple, church, or their place of worship. Authorities think the man who shot the worshipers is an Army veteran and a former white supremacist.
Today's court date has been postponed until September 27th for Minnesota Vikings star running back Adrian Peterson because prosecutors need more time to review evidence and conduct interviews. Peterson is accused of pushing an off-duty police officer at a Houston nightclub about a month ago after authorities say he refused to leave at closing time. Peterson's lawyer says his client didn't resist arrest and the officer hit him in the face for no reason. Peterson is expected to rejoin the team at training camp in Mankato.
An engineering team from the University of Minnesota was instrumental in helping develop the parachute that helped NASA's rover "Curiosity" land on Mars early this morning. Professor Graham Candler says because the mass that landed on Mars is bigger than anything NASA had done before, the size of the parachute had to be increased and there were problems with that which needed to be overcome. Candler says the planet's thin atmosphere is what makes it so challenging to land the rover on Mars.
A central Minnesota man died over the weekend while scuba diving in an Otter Tail County lake. Fifty-one-year-old James Reardon of Pierz was reported missing by a friend Saturday afternoon. They were diving on Lake Seven near Vergas. The body of Reardon, an experienced diver, was found about 20 minutes after deputies and the water patrol arrived.
In a summer of sweltering heat and humidity, another warm weather record has been tied in Minnesota. Weather officials say a cool air blast out of Canada put an end to more than a month of 80-degree highs around the Twin Cities. The string of 39 straight days, which ended Saturday, ties a Twin Cities mark set back in 1916 but comes a few days short of the record in St. Cloud. Back in 1921, the central Minnesota city saw 43 straight days of 80-degrees or better.
A Belle Plaine man died in an auto accident over the weekend. The State Patrol says 58-year-old Marvin Schreiner died when his SUV was hit by a car which had crossed the median of Highway-212 in Glencoe. Both the driver and passenger in the car were injured but should recover.
A special task force commissioned by Governor Dayton is recommending a different approach to combat bullying in Minnesota schools. Co-chair Walter Roberts says the task force heard over and over in listening sessions around Minnesota that there needs to be a more comprehensive approach. He says zero-tolerance policies are a "very simple to enforce, but they're not a very intelligent way to respond to really all of the things that happen with kids." Roberts says the task force heard that bullying is not just a "kid problem" -- that how adults relate to each other is also a factor, plus the role-model messages they send to students.
A lot of Minnesotans felt a stiff breeze heading into last weekend. The National Weather Service has released a report that includes wind speeds up to 64-miles-an-hour west of the Twin Cities late Friday. But forecasters note the winds above the surface over Carver County reached as high as 90-miles-an-hour. Storm warnings were issued from east to west across the lower half of the state as tree branches were snapped and some people lost power.
A couple of nasty weather events hit Minnesota on this day in history. Back in 1866, massive downpours caught southeastern Minnesota by surprise, causing drownings and washing out bridges. More than 10-inches of rain came down in less than 24-hours in Sibley. Many Minnesotans may remember this day in 1969 when tornadoes churned across northern Minnesota, namely Ely, Backus, Outing and Dark Lake. Damage could still be seen 20-years later in the BWCA.
A four-year old boy was critically-injured after falling three stories at a home west of the Twin Cities on Sunday. Authorities say the boy pushed through a window screen in a Spring Park condominium and fell to the ground, barely missing a section of concrete. The boy's condition was listed as stable after he was given CPR and rushed to the hospital.
A Rochester company has recalled about 16,000 pounds of meat products. The USDA says Reichel Foods pulled its Armour Active Packs Turkey and Cheese Wrap -- plus Armour Active Packs Ham and Cheese Wrap -- over concerns of listeria contamination. There have been no reports of illnesses so far.