Minnesota News Briefs: Food vendors to set up shop outside MetrodomeMinnesota News
-- Although the Vikings lost this Sunday to the Colts 23-20, Minnesota football fans did get one victory this weekend, tailgating at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome.
MINNEAPOLIS -- Although the Vikings lost this Sunday to the Colts 23-20, Minnesota football fans did get one victory this weekend, tailgating at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome.
With days numbered for the Metrodome, Minneapolis officials hope to "juice up" the game day experience during Vikings home games. The city will reportedly allow 22 food trucks and a stand offering locally-made beers along the light rail line that runs adjacent to the stadium. Plans call for the food and beer stands to be in place for the Vikings' September 23rd home game against the 49ers. The new stadium will soon be under construction next door with opening set for 2016.
Supporters of civic center projects that did not receive any of the state bonding money awarded Thursday are holding out hope for next spring. Mankato City Manager Pat Hentges says Governor Dayton indicated the Mankato, Rochester and Saint Cloud projects will be at the top of his bonding request next session. Mankato requested $14-and-a-half-million to expand the Verizon Wireless Center and make improvements for the Minnesota State University hockey program. Dayton says lawmakers need to appropriate more bonding money so important projects can be funded.
Senate Republican Majority Leader Dave Senjem (R-Rochester) says Governor Dayton "had a softball down the middle of the plate and missed it" when he picked projects to receive $47-million in extra state bonding money. Senjem criticizes Dayton's decision to use more than half the available dollars for a new St. Paul Saints ballpark, saying stronger projects were set aside. Senjem says the legislature is looking for "some show-stopping economic development projects that would really benefit the state of Minnesota." Dayton fires back the legislature didn't appropriate enough money so important projects can be funded. He says proposed convention center upgrades in Rochester, Saint Cloud and Mankato will be at the top of his bonding proposal in 2013.
U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood was in Saint Cloud Thursday, announcing the Granite City will receive $59.3 million in federal funds to help the its Transit Commission renovate its bus operations center. The facility will house a fleet fueled by compressed natural gas as well as a fueling station. The project is one of 27 across the country selected to receive $59.3-million through the Clean Fuels Grant program.
"Crops are looking very good in our area." That's according to Keith Schrader, who grows corn and soybeans east of Faribault in Nerstrand. Despite drought conditions for many this season, Schrader says his weather has been consistent, with ample rainfall this growing season. But west of Nerstrand it's a different story as rains have been spotty, and extreme drought has settled south of New Ulm and in far southwestern Minnesota.
Inmates from the Roseau County Jail have resumed the search for a Detroit Lakes area man who's been missing since last month after finishing his truck route in Warroad. At that time, Donald Dugger went to police and made confusing statements about people surrounding his truck. He was last seen moving his belongings from the truck to his car, which was found a week later in the Beltrami State Forest.
The State Patrol has identified the woman killed in an accident in the Twin Cities suburb of Eagan this week. Authorities say 68-year-old Sandra Brodin of Lakeville died when the car she was riding in collided with another at a busy intersection Her husband who was driving had minor injuries. The drivers of two other cars involved were not hurt.
A Minnesota company has issued a voluntary recall of fruit packages it produces due to concerns over salmonella. Inver Grove Heights-based Cut Fruit Express says the canteloupe in the packages was recalled due to the potential of the bacteria, but no illnesses have surfaced yet. Customers who bought the fruit packages can return them for a store credit.
State health officials say two new cases of the H3N2 swine flu have been reported in Minnesota, one in a school-aged girl from the Twin Cities and one in a pre-school boy from Greater Minnesota. Neither child was hospitalized and both have fully recovered. Officials say both children visited the swine barn at the State Fair and became ill a fews days later -- although they say the boy lives on a farm where swine are raised and could have been exposed to it there.
Gas prices have cracked the four-dollar mark at a number of stations across the state Triple-A Minnesota's Gail Weinholzer admits she was expecting an immediate decline after the summer driving season and Hurricane Isaac. She says the oil refinery and platform closures in the Gulf are to blame for the recent spike. Weinholzer says refineries will begin switching from summer to winter-grade fuel this weekend which will bring some relief at the pumps late next week. Gas prices have been rising steadily since the Fourth of July and now average $3.97 a gallon for regular unleaded.
University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler presented his proposed $1.2 billion, two-year budget to the Board of Regents Friday. Kaler is taking a different approach to asking the legislature for new money: His budget would freeze tuition for undergraduates, if lawmakers give the -U- a $14.2 million increase each of the next two years. Kaler also proposes an $11.5 million "accountability fund." In it, the state would release the money if the University awards more degrees, increases financial aid and maintains R-and-D spending. Kaler also proposes an $18-million for research on robotics, treating brain conditions, and other areas.