>>Flags Lowered to Half-Staff for Peace Officer Memorial Day in Minnesota

(St. Paul, MN) — Flags are flying at half-staff on state buildings in Minnesota today (Wed) in honor of peace officers who have been killed or injured in the line of duty. The proclamation from Governor Tim Walz declares May 15th as Peace Officer Memorial Day in Minnesota. Walz says, “today we honor the officers who gave their lives to protect us. There is a remembrance ceremony tonight (Wed 7pm) at the Peace Officer Memorial at the State Capitol. Burnsville Officers Paul Elmstrand and Matthew Ruge and Firefighter/paramedic Adam Finseth died in the line of duty in February.


>>Southern Minnesota Man Pleads Guilty to Participating in January 6th Insurrection

(Washington, DC) — A southern Minnesota man will be sentenced in October for participating in the January 6th, 2021 insurrection at the U-S Capitol Building. Prosecutors in Washington, D-C say 35-year-old Paul Orta, Junior of Blue Earth pleaded guilty Tuesday to a felony charge of civil disorder. The criminal complaint says Orta pushed several metal bike racks being used as barricades and made physical contact with law enforcement officers. Orta could receive an eight- to 14-month prison sentence under federal guidelines. He also agreed to pay two thousand dollars in restitution for damage to the U-S Capitol.


>>Minnesota House to Vote on Sports Betting Bill

(St. Paul, MN) — A sports betting bill is set for a vote in the Minnesota House today (Wed after 1pm), the product of long-running efforts spearheaded by Coon Rapids Democrat Zack Stephenson, trying to satisfy competing interests. His bill authorizes mobile sports betting licenses for Indian tribes with a 20 percent tax on proceeds. It legalizes fantasy contests, taxed at 10 percent. It reduces tax rates on charitable gambling receipts beginning in fiscal 2025, provided tax revenues from sports betting and fantasy contests hit certain thresholds. And Stephenson’s bill prohibits what are called historical horse racing (HHR) machines at Minnesota’s two horse tracks, overriding a recent decision by the Minnesota Racing Commission, but also establishes an economic development account to benefit the tracks.


>>UnitedHealthcare Fined $450 K for Alleged Mental Health Parity Law Violations

(St. Paul, MN) — The Minnesota Department of Commerce is fining UnitedHealthcare 450 thousand dollars as part of a settlement over alleged violations of mental health parity laws. Assistant Commissioner Jacqueline Olson says the consent order alleges that UnitedHealthcare treated mental health care coverage differently and evaluated mental health and substance abuse claims more stringently that claims for other types of care. She says the nation’s largest insurer was ordered to pay 300 thousand dollars now and 150 thousand will be stayed if they comply with the agreement. State officials will be monitoring the Minnetonka-based insurance company through March 2025.


>>Mayo Clinic Health System Celebrates Mankato Hospital Expansion

(Mankato, MN) — The Mayo Clinic Health System says it has finished expanding its hospital facility in Mankato. M-C-H-S officials toured the three new floors at the Marsh Street building on Tuesday. The $155 million expansion includes 121 new beds, a new Family Birth Center with seven delivery rooms, and intensive care, progressive care, and medical-surgical areas. The hospital plans to evaluate its lower floors for possible renovation over the next few years.


>>Palestine Solidarity Groups Protest, March at Klobuchar’s Office

(Minneapolis, MN) — Minnesota’s Free Palestine Coalition plans to protest and march outside of Senator Amy Klobuchar’s Minneapolis office tonight (WED 5;30 pm) for the 76th anniversary of Al Nakba, “the catastrophe,” in Arabic. The group states Palestinians observe Nakba Day to mark the dispossession of Palestinians of 78% of their land by Israeli Zionist terrorist groups in 1948. The coalition says they are once again demanding an end to U-S aid to Israel and asking Klobuchar to stop her support for “the ongoing second Nakba, the US-backed Israeli genocide currently occurring in Gaza.”


>>Dylan Festival Begins in Duluth Next Week

(Duluth, MN) — The Duluth Dylan Fest, a six-day festival celebrating the legacy of Minnesota native Bob Dylan, will begin next week in Duluth. The festival kicks off on Tuesday with a jam session at Carmody’s Irish Pub. Other events include a tribute to Dylan’s “Basement Tapes” at the Earth Rider Brewery and a birthday party at the performer’s first home. More information is available online at duluthdylanfest.com.


>>MnDOT warns of summer traffic delays on I-35 up to Duluth

(Duluth, MN) — State transportation officials are warning about expected traffic delays on Interstate 35 between the Twin Cities and Duluth this summer. MnDOT says drivers will encounter single lane, head-to-head traffic on I-35 near Hinckley through October and just south of Highway 210 in Carlton County until the end of August. There will be lane closures in Duluth for work on the Twin Ports Interchange, plus bridge and pavement repairs in the city. Traffic delays will be the worst for drivers heading north on Friday afternoon and southbound on Sunday.


>>Timberwolves Fall at Denver in Game 5 of Western Conference Semifinals

(Denver, CO) — The Timberwolves lost to the Nuggets 112-97 late Tuesday night in Denver and now trail the Western Conference semifinals three games-to-two. Minnesota had no answer for M-V-P Nikola Jokic who scored 40 points and dished out 13 assists. Karl-Anthony Towns led the Wolves with 23 points while Rudy Gobert and Anthony Edwards each had 18. This the first three-game losing streak of the season for the Timberwolves. They host a “must win” Game 6 Thursday night at Target Center.




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