Oakdale shooting charges, same-sex marrage and kitties on a stickby Phil Picardi, Minnesota Public Radio,
Hart Van Denburg, Minnesota Public Radio
Today on the MPR News Update: A suspect is charged in the Oakdale shootings, the same sex marriage push has begun at the state Capitol, Gov. Dayton's tax proposal has Minnesota counties crying foul, childhood victims of abuse don't want prosecutions to be limited by time, and the Walker's Internet Cat Video Festival is on the move.
SHOOTING CHARGES: An Oakdale man has been charged with two counts of second degree murder for a shooting rampage that resulted in the death of a 9-year-old boy and the wounding of the boy's mother and another woman. Nhan Tran allegedly fired on four cars passing on the street near his home, and police say he had more than enough ammunition to do a lot more damage.
SAM-SEX MARRIAGE: The effort to legalize same-sex marriage in Minnesota is on at the state Capitol. Supporters are gathering today for a Valentine's Day rally and opponents have their own rally planned in three weeks, both as lawmakers prepare for the anticipated debate.
TAXES: Gov. Dayton's sales tax proposal is getting plenty of attention for how it would lower the tax rate, but expand it to more services. The tax changes would also apply to cities and counties -- which also have to pay the sales tax. Now, some city and county officials say Dayton's plan would put a big dent in their budgets.
STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS: Under a proposed bill in the Legislature, childhood victims of sexual abuse would no longer face a time limit in suing their abusers. The Minnesota Child Victims Act would eliminate the requirement that victims file civil suits within six years of becoming an adult.
TRIBAL HOTELS: Early next month, the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe is expected to finalize its purchase of two hotels in downtown St. Paul. The band's leadership says it's buying the hotels to diversify business. And they're not alone. Tribal growth and threats to Indian gambling revenue have propelled tribes around the country to expand beyond gaming in recent years.
FEWER FORECLOSURES: Home foreclosures in Minnesota have fallen to their lowest level since 2006, according to the Minnesota Home Ownership Center. But foreclosure levels are still three times higher than in 2005.
BEER HERE: Minneapolis has licensed six new breweries in the last three years, but no new breweries have opened in St. Paul over that time. Now, St. Paul's City Council has voted to loosen restrictions on small breweries.
BETTER TACONITE: Two of Cliffs Natural Resources taconite facilities in Minnesota have produced higher grade iron-ore pellets, a development which could broaden the market for the company's Iron Range taconite.
KITTY ON A STICK? Cat video fans need worry no more. Not only will the Walker Art Center's biggest hit of last year return, it's going to be bigger, and at a new historic venue - the Minnesota State Fair Grandstand.
Phil Picardi is a newscaster for MPR News, and occasionally fills in as Morning Edition host when Cathy Wurzer is away.