Two competing convenience store chains are getting together to raise awareness of human trafficking. Kum & Go and Casey's General Store are training their 2,500 employees through "C-SAT", convenience stores against trafficking. Casey's spokesman Mike Richardson: Our employees will be trained in the next three-to-four weeks probably everyone will be completed in order to watch for any signs of human trafficking. On top of that, we'll be placing stickers in the restrooms to either write the number down or text to somebody that they are actually in that situation. Kum & Go has almost 400 stores in 11 states while Casey's [...]
The Minnesota House is expected to debate and pass a major health and human services bill today, the second-largest portion of the state budget. Glencoe Republican Glenn Gruenhagen warns it's the "first step toward a massively expensive government takeover of our health care system": "They are spending Minnesota's tax dollars to study and come up with legislation for single-payer. Minnesotans would lose their choice in health care." House Speaker, Democrat Melissa Hortman responds: "Minnesotans did not ask any of us to reduce their access to health care during the last campaign. They asked us to increase access to health care, and [...]
The Minnesota Senate last night (Wed) passed a nearly 2.4-billion-dollar budget bill to fund public safety agencies and the judicial branch. Lead author, Maple Grove Republican Warren Limmer: "This is bill is focused on funding corrections officers, public safety employees and all those who deserve protection from violence and injustice." The bill includes 9.5 million dollars to hire new corrections officers at state prisons and make security upgrades. It also toughens penalties for sex offenders. But controversial anti-gun-violence measures, such as background checks and a so-called "red flag" law, are *not* in the bill. More wrangling over that issue will likely [...]
Governor Tim Walz says he has concerns about how negotiations are going these last few weeks of session. That's after Senate Republicans failed to show up at a conference committee meeting Tuesday to discuss accepting federal funding to bolster election security. Senator Mary Kiffmeyer of Big Lake says the Senate was not included in the scheduling. Walz says..."To say that we didn't know about this meeting, that is just patently false, and so that's not a great way to start negotiations, and so the trust factor here of what is the issue--what can I help you with HAVA if you won't [...]
Minnesota lawmakers today (Wed) are remembering Conservation Officer Eugene Wynn, who died Friday in the line of duty: Officer Wynn was investigating a report of a possible body on Cross Lake in Pine City when he and a sheriff's deputy were thrown from their boat into the water. The deputy was rescued but Officer Wynn apparently drowned. Senator Jason Rarick from Pine City says: "He was well-known and well-liked in the community, a fair officer who served with dignity and pride, and represented his brothers and sisters in green well." Visitation and funeral services are Friday in Pine City.
Do something about high prescription drug prices, say citizens at the State Capitol before tonight's (Wed) Minnesota House vote on a major health and human services funding bill. Claire Henn from Saint Paul, who has severe rheumatoid arthritis, says her medication co-pay went from 60 dollars a month to 14-hundred: "While I was off the medication I was in extreme pain. I had to walk with a cane. I lost so much strength I couldn't cut a peanut butter sandwich." House Democrats say their bill starts to rein-in "pharmacy benefit managers" which are making a lot of profit. They [...]
With another long night ahead (Wed) at the Minnesota Legislature, Democratic House Speaker Melissa Hortman says it's irresponsible for Republicans to propose so many amendments to major budget bills -- noting one lawmaker had a "significant" health issue during Tuesday night's protracted floor debate: "We have a lot of people whose health doesn't do well... (during) 19-hour days, consecutive 24-hour days." House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt fires back a Republican member had a allergic reaction that had nothing to do with the length of the session -- and he says Speaker Hortman... "She shouldn't use people's health to try to make [...]
Former Vice President Joe Biden announced this morning he's running for president. In many polls, Biden is the frontrunner in a crowded field of Democrats--including Minnesota's U-S Senator Amy Klobuchar. Carleton College political analyst Steven Schier says Klobuchar is polling nationally at one-percent..."I think Joe Biden is very much a problem for Amy Klobuchar, because Amy has not staked out a position in the left wing of her party, and Joe Biden will be adopting a similar profile and he will have more money and is much better known." President Trump this morning welcomed Biden to the race, referring to Biden [...]
All Minnesota workers could have up to 48 hours of paid sick time per year to care for themselves or a loved one -- plus the state would set up a more expansive paid family and medical leave program using contributions from workers and employers. That's under a measure the Democrat-controlled Minnesota House passed last night (Wed) as part of a major budget bill. Opponents warn the extra expense could put tight-margin small companies out-of-business: The measures face stiff opposition in the Republican-controlled Minnesota Senate.
Minnesota did well in this year's EPA "State of the Air" report. Robert Moffitt with the American Lung Association in Minnesota says every county in the state was in full compliance with federal air quality standards, one of the few states in the nation to reach that level of air quality. But he says we still have work to do to maintain healthy air, specifically when it comes to transportation. Moffitt says in Minnesota only Ramsey County received less than an A or B grade, keeping the same C rating from 2018's report.