>>GOP Lawmakers Grill Education Commissioner on Feeding our Future Report

(St. Paul, MN) — Walz administration officials faced intense questioning from Republican lawmakers following the release of a legislative auditor’s report highly critical of the state Education Department’s response to fraud in the Feeding our Future program. Commissioner Willie Jett said there are some findings in the report “that are fair” and they’re using this report as a tool to improve. But Jett added, “to come here and place blame or highlight who mis-stepped, that’s not right. That’s just not what we’re gonna do.” North Branch Republican Senator Mark Koran (kor-ANN) responded “What we would expect you to say is, yeah, you’re dang right, this was horrible, this is what I’m gonna do and I would hold everybody accountable. ” Jett says their reporting to the F-B-I led to 70 criminal indictments, with 18 defendants pleading guilty to charges such as wire fraud and other financial crimes.


>>National Weather Service Confirms 3 Tornadoes in North Central, Eastern Minnesota

(Duluth, MN) — The National Weather Service is confirming that at least three tornadoes did damage in north central and eastern Minnesota during Wednesday’s severe storms. Meteorologist Kevin Huyck (hike) in Duluth says the tornadoes touched down near Wright in Carlton County, toward Rabbit Lake near Crosby, and there was tornado damage near Upper Whitefish Lake and Crosslake in Crow Wing County. Huyck  says the tornado in the Cuyuna/Crosby area appears to have been the strongest but they’re still working to determine the tornado ratings. He says they also received photos and video of a possible tornado near Glenn in Aitkin County.


>>House Fire in New Brighton Leaves 2 Women Dead

(New Brighton, MN) — Authorities in the north metro are investigating a fire in New Brighton that left two women dead. Firefighters received a report of smoke and flames coming from a house early Wednesday. Crews say they pulled 78-year-old Diana Davies and 37-year-old Maya Davies from the burning home and provided medical aid, but they both died at the scene. The New Brighton fire chief says it appears to be an accidental fire and that the home did not have working smoke alarms.


>>New HPAI Test for Dairy Cows Required to Attend Exhibitions in MN

(St. Paul, MN) — Producers in Minnesota with lactating dairy cows need to have a negative test for highly pathogenic avian influenza to attend any exhibition in the state. Board of Animal Health Veterinarian Katie Cornille says while bird flu in dairy cases are still being studied across the country, initial insights show milk and the udders are a hotspot for influenza virus on infected cows, which makes showing lactating dairy at events a higher risk. Officials say a Certificate of Veterinary Inspection (CVI) will be required for exhibitions effective next Tuesday. The state’s first case of avian influenza in a dairy herd was confirmed last week in Benton County.


>>Hazelden Research Shows LGBTQ+ Kids at Greater Risk of Substance Abuse

(Center City, MN) — Research from Minnesota-based Hazelden Betty Ford shows L-G-B-T-Q-plus youth are at a much greater risk of addiction to substance use disorders than their peers. Director of Operations Lydia Burr says there are several reasons why queer youth struggle with using substances. She says,” they are more likely to be the victims of hate crimes, more likely to be called out in public, not having a lot of places where they feel safe or where they feel they’re able to be themselves, potentially not having the support of family.” The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration reports that 1.9 million Americans who identify as lesbian, gay, or bisexual experience co-occurring substance abuse and mental health disorders, with 86.8% of those people not receiving any treatment.


>>CenterPoint Energy Awards $230K in Community Safety Grants

(Minneapolis, MN) — CenterPoint Energy says it awarded more than 90 Community Safety Grants this year, totaling nearly 230-thousand dollars in Minnesota and five other states. Officials say the funds are used to support local communities acquire safety materials, such as public A-E-Ds, traffic control signs, personal protective equipment, and more. CenterPoint says the program has funded over 1,600 safety-related projects and awarded over $3.25 million in grants since its launch in 2003.



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