City fights solar system approved by state

By   /  July 29, 2015  /  Energy and Environment, Minnesota, News, State Government  /  No Comments

Watchdog photo

Chip Purcell, who built his family’s dream home in woods and fields just outside the city, got quite the shock when he heard about a new neighbor — a 70-acre solar farm.

“While building, we heard about it, but we didn’t have any time to act against it, like we would have wanted to,” Purcell said about the six-megawatt solar farm planned next door. “We’re not a big fan of it at all.”

The farm joins 20 other Aurora Solar systems around the state recently approved by the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission.

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Home-care workers find getting out harder than getting in union

By   /  July 20, 2015  /  Budget and Spending, Legislature, Minnesota, News, State Government  /  No Comments

Submitted photo

Renee Katz has one question for the Service Employees International Union: What about “no” don’t you understand?

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Give me the vapors: E-cigarette advocates fight regulators in Minnesota

By   /  July 16, 2015  /  Economy, Minnesota, News, State Government  /  No Comments

Smokeless Smoking photo

Minnesota cities and counties are making the living anything but easy for e-cigarette shop owners and customers. A wave of recently enacted ordinances has prompted the Independent Vapor Retailers of Minnesota to warn members not to let their guard down this summer.

“While the calendar is a bit lighter, you can see why WE CANNOT EVER go on ‘vacation’ from Advocacy (not even over the Summer months),” states IVRM”s latest e-newsletter distributed to 68 member vaping businesses statewide.

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Third strike may mark end for Minnesota wind energy project

By   /  July 14, 2015  /  Energy and Environment, Minnesota, News  /  No Comments

DOE photo

Time, as well as the patience of state regulators, appears to have run out on a 17-turbine wind-energy project in the works since 2006. The Minnesota Department of Commerce, on July 6, recommended revoking the project site permit.

Developers of the 31.5 megawatt facility, once estimated to cost $63 million, had gotten a pair of two-year extensions to get the proposed Comfrey Wind Energy farm off the ground.

But the owners of the long-stalled project claim it’s a sign a regulatory system that helped foster Minnesota’s wind-energy developers now works against them.

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Minnesotans may pay for soccer stadium after all (John Oliver says it’s a bad idea)

By   /  July 13, 2015  /  Accountability, Finances, Issues, Media, Minnesota, News, State Budgets, State Government, Video  /  No Comments

JohnOliverSports

It’s been less than three months since the Minnesota Legislature and Gov. Mark Dayton decided there would not be a taxpayer-funded soccer-specific stadium in downtown Minneapolis.

But Minnesotans, or at least residents of St. Paul, might end up picking up the tab for a stadium anyway.

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Education week-in-review: Missing money and radical kids

By   /  July 10, 2015  /  Arizona, Education, Education Blog, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin  /  No Comments

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From Washington D.C., where school money is missing, to Milwaukee, where school kids are radicals, it’s been an interesting week in education news.

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