Anoka County approves Wheelage Tax
Car owners in Anoka County will soon start paying a new wheelage tax to pay for road projects. The Anoka County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously last night to impose an annual $5 per vehicle tax that is expected to raise about $1.4 million a year specifically for transportation projects. Dakota County's board approved the same wheelage tax last week, and other metro area counties are expected to weigh in before August.7:50 a.m.
Good grades would mean free college under Pawlenty plan Gov. Pawlenty has outlined a plan to provide free in-state college tuition to Minnesota's top high school students. Pawlenty says an estimated 16,000 students could benefit in the first year. DFL critics say the Republican governor has had an election-year conversion on higher education issues.7:54 a.m.
National Public Radio Stories
Flag-Burning Amendment Comes Up Short in Senate
A constitutional amendment to ban flag burning fell one vote short of the two-thirds majority necessary to pass Tuesday. The Senate vote was 66 to 34 in favor of the amendment. The amendment has already passed in the House.
Specter Challenges Presidential Signing Statements
President Bush has regularly added signing statements to laws passed by the Congress, with some statements noting an unwillingness to enforce the law. Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA) says the president's actions are a challenge to the Constitution. He wants to be able to sue the president over signings.
'Oath Betrayed' Questions Doctors' Roles in Torture
In the spring of 2004, when Americans were horrified by the pictures of abuse at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison, medical-ethics expert Steven Miles had just one question: Where were the doctors? Miles, himself a doctor, has written a book about how the medical profession failed to perform its role as protector.
Lance Armstrong Rebuts Latest Doping Allegations
Seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong is making the media rounds this week to rebut the latest doping allegations against him. In particular, he is denying sworn testimony from two witnesses who say he openly acknowledged in 1996 that he had used performance-enhancing drugs.
Afghan Government Struggles with Taliban Threat
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrives in Afghanistan to show support for President Hamid Karzai, whose popularity has slumped in the face of a resurgent Taliban. Susan Stamberg talks with journalist Ahmed Rashid about the current state of affairs in Afghanistan.
U.S. Finds Success Tracking Terror Money
David Aufhauser, former general Counsel of the U.S. Treasury Department, talks with Steve Inskeep about the Swift Program, a government effort to monitor international financial networks. Aufhauser discusses how terrorists finance their operations, and how the exposure of the Swift program could affect U.S. intelligence.
Doggy Day Care Unleashed
Day care isn't just for kids anymore. In recent years, more than 1,500 day-care centers for dogs have opened around the country. Some dog lovers confess to spending $6,000 to $7,000 a year on the service. How's that for puppy love?
San Diego's a Winner in Sanitation Circles
San Diego may have the finest garbage truck drivers in the world. For the fourth time in the city's history, a San Diego city employee has won the Sanitation Driver of the Year award.
Israel Enters Gaza in Wake of Soldier's Capture
Israeli tanks and troops have moved into southern Gaza. Warplanes have attacked three bridges and knocked out power to the coastal strip. The attacks are an attempt by the Jewish state to step up pressure on Palestinian militants holding a 19-year-old Israeli soldier captive.
Soldier's Kidnapping Increases Mideast Tensions
Philip Wilcox, president for the Foundation for Middle East, talks with Susan Stamberg about efforts to free an Israeli soldier held by Palestinian militants. Does the Israeli incursion make a bad situation worse?