Author: The Associated Press

Democrat’s Delay Nominating Convention Amid Virus Concerns

(AP) – Democrats announced Thursday that they were postponing their presidential nominating convention until August, an unprecedented move that shows how the coronavirus is reshaping the battle for the White House. The party had hoped that a mid-July convention would give them more time to rally behind a nominee and unify against President Donald Trump. But concerns that large crowds will spread the…

Gov. Whitmer: Michigan Schools Closed for Academic Year

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — More than 1.5 million Michigan students will not return to K-12 school buildings the rest of the academic year due to the coronavirus pandemic and instead will learn remotely, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer ordered Thursday. All public and private schools are more than halfway through a four-week shutdown ordered by Whitmer to combat the outbreak. She said…

A Record 6.6 Million Seek US Jobless Aid as Layoffs Mount

WASHINGTON (AP) — More than 6.6 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week — doubling a record high set just one week earlier — a sign that layoffs are accelerating in the midst of the coronavirus. The stunning report Thursday from the Labor Department showed that job cuts are mounting against the backdrop of economies in the United States and abroad…

Walz to Deliver Video State of the State Speech Sunday

(Glen Stubbe/Star Tribune via AP) ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Gov. Tim Walz has announced that he’ll deliver his postponed State of the State address on Sunday evening at 7 p.m., and he says he’s looking forward to speaking directly to Minnesotans during this uncertain time. The governor said Wednesday that he’ll deliver the speech alone with a remote camera…

Wisconsin: 1,550 COVID-19 Cases, 24 Total Deaths

MADISON, Wis. – The number of positive COVID-19 cases in Wisconsin crossed 1,500 on Wednesday, with 24 deaths. Douglas County is now reporting its seventh case. The latest figures from state and local health departments show the coronavirus continues to spread across the state. Of the positive cases, about 26% were hospitalized at some point. The data does not say…

Minnesota Department of Health Reports 5 More COVID-19 Deaths, 13 Cases now in St. Louis County

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Department of Health said Wednesday five more people have died of coronavirus complications, bringing the state’s death toll to 17. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases continued to climb as expected with 70 additional cases announced Wednesday for a total of 689. The MDH reports that as of Wednesday morning St. Louis County…

Wimbledon Canceled for 1st Time Since WWII Because of Virus

(AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth) (AP) – Wimbledon was canceled on Wednesday because of the coronavirus pandemic, the first time since World War II that the oldest Grand Slam tennis tournament won’t be played. Britain imposed a nationwide lockdown just over a week ago, and the All England Club announced after a two-day emergency meeting that the event it refers to simply…

Republicans Support Waiving Unemployment Waiting Period

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin Republican legislative leaders said for the first time Wednesday that they support temporarily waiving a one-week waiting period for people to receive unemployment benefits as part of a state aid package in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Assembly Speaker Robin Vos and Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said in a conference call that work was…

Students Say University of Minnesota Shortchanged Refunds

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Students, regents and some state lawmakers are criticizing the University of Minnesota for shortchanging students with a refund of only $1,200 for room and board after having to move off campus because of the coronavirus pandemic. A semester roughly costs a student more than $5,000 for a combination of student housing and meal plans. The $1,200 covers…

Evers Seeks Disaster Declaration as Unemployment Grows

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Gov. Tony Evers asked President Donald Trump on Tuesday to issue a major disaster declaration for the state of Wisconsin due to the coronavirus pandemic, as unemployment claims hit a daily high and the state’s health secretary warned lawmakers that Medicaid enrollments were going to increase dramatically. Evers said he hoped the declaration, which also would…

Two Additional MN Deaths Due to COVID-19 Complications

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The coronavirus outbreak in Minnesota continued to track upward Tuesday with dozens of new confirmed cases and additional deaths. The state Department of Health said 12 people have died from COVID-19 complications, up by two deaths since Monday’s toll. The state has 629 confirmed cases Tuesday, up 53 from Monday. (courtesy: MN Department of Health)…

More Labs Helping With COVID-19 in Wisconsin

MADISON, Wis. – Wisconsin will be able to double its capacity to process COVID-19 tests with the addition of new laboratories that will assist with the effort, Gov. Tony Evers said Monday. The new public-private partnership includes laboratory support from Exact Sciences, Marshfield Clinic Health System, Promega, and UW Health. Existing labs that had been doing the testing were able…

Wisconsin Dairy Farmers Hit Hard by Coronavirus

MILWAUKEE (AP) — The coronavirus has delivered a severe blow to Wisconsin dairy farmers who rely on selling milk to restaurants, schools and the hospitality industry. About one-third of Wisconsin dairy products, mainly cheese, are sold in the foodservice trade, the Journal Sentinel reported. Farmers say the coronavirus outbreak has caused milk prices to drop to unprofitable levels this spring, at…

Minnesota COVID-19 Death Total Reaches 9 on Sunday

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota reported four new deaths from COVID-19 on Sunday, bringing the state’s death toll from the new coronavirus to nine. State Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said three of the new deaths were among people who lived in long-term care facilities in Hennepin County. The fourth death was in Martin County, in southern Minnesota, but was…

Storms, Tornadoes Damage Homes, Businesses in Midwest, South

Strong storms that brought tornadoes, high winds, hail and rain to parts of the Midwest and South caused extensive damage in some areas but no deaths, officials said Sunday. Tornadoes were spotted in Arkansas, Illinois and Iowa as thunderstorms swept through the area Saturday. High winds and a possible tornado were also reported in Indiana. The National Weather Service said…

Minnesota Officials Report Fifth Coronavirus Death

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – The Minnesota Department of Health on Saturday confirmed the state’s fifth death from the coronavirus. The recent health department report shows that COVID-19 cases have increased to 441, up 43 from Friday, with 30 patients hospitalized. The state has conducted 16,129 tests. Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz, who is under a 14-day quarantine and is working from the…

Trump Signs $2.2T Stimulus After Swift Congressional Votes

WASHINGTON-President Donald Trump has signed an unprecedented $2.2 trillion economic rescue package into law, after swift and near-unanimous action by Congress this week. The package will support businesses, rush resources to overburdened health care providers and help struggling families during the deepening coronavirus epidemic. As he signed the bill Friday, Trump declared it “will deliver urgently needed relief.” He thanked…

House Passes $2.2T Rescue Package, Rushes it to Trump

(House Television via AP) WASHINGTON (AP) – The House has approved a $2.2 trillion rescue package, rushing it to President Donald Trump for his signature. The measure tosses a life preserver to a U.S. economy and health care system left flailing by the coronavirus pandemic. The House approved the sweeping measure by a voice vote, as strong majorities of both…

Klobuchar’s Husband Back Home After Virus Hospitalization

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s husband has been released from a hospital where he was being treated for low oxygen and pneumonia as a result of the coronavirus, the senator said Thursday. Klobuchar, a former Democratic presidential candidate, said in a statement that her husband, John Bessler, “took a good turn, was just released and is now recovering at…

Wisconsin COVID-19 Cases Jump to More Than 700

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – Wisconsin health officials report another jump in the number of positive COVID-19 tests. The Wisconsin Department of Health Services on Thursday reported 707 positive cases of the coronavirus. That’s more than 120 cases since Wednesday, when 585 positive tests were reported. The number of deaths in Wisconsin caused by COVID-19 stands at eight. Milwaukee County has the…

Minnesota House Passes $330 Million COVID-19 Aid Bill

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minnesota Legislature was poised Thursday to pass a $330 million financial aid package to help soften the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic that has sickened more than 300 people and claimed two lives in the state. The Minnesota Department of Health said Thursday that the state’s second COVID-19 death was a patient from Ramsey County…

Evers Administration Closes State Capitol

MILWAUKEE (AP) – Gov. Tony Evers has decided to close the state Capitol building in Madison as the coronavirus crisis deepens in Wisconsin. The Department of Administration closed the building at 8 a.m. Thursday morning. The building will remain closed indefinitely, although DOA officials said they would reopen it if the state Legislature or the state Supreme Court decides to…

US Unemployment Claims Shatter Record as Coronavirus Hammers Economy

WASHINGTON (Fox Business) – The number of Americans filing for unemployment surged to 3.28 million last week, shattering a decades-old record in jobless claims as the coronavirus pandemic forced businesses around the country to shutter their doors. The number eclipsed the previous record of 695,000 set in 1982 and is well above the levels seen in the midst of the 2008 financial crisis, the Labor…

Wisconsin Reports 8th Coronavirus Death

MILWAUKEE (AP) – The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner says another person has died of coronavirus complications. That brings the number of COVID-19-related deaths in Wisconsin to eight. The latest victim is a 57-year-old woman from West Allis who died shortly before 10 p.m. Wednesday at Froedtert Hospital, according to the medical examiner’s office. She had been hospitalized since March 19….

Minnesota Supreme Court Agrees to Hear PolyMet Permit Appeal

(AP Photo/Jim Mone, File) ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Supreme Court has agreed to hear PolyMet Mining Inc.’s appeal of a ruling that canceled three permits needed for its proposed copper-nickel mine in northeastern Minnesota. In January, the Minnesota Court of Appeals gave environmentalists a major victory by rejecting some of the most important permits for the planned…

Senate Unanimously Passes Massive Coronavirus Aid Plan

(Senate Television via AP) WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate passed an unparalleled $2.2 trillion economic rescue package steering aid to businesses, workers and health care systems engulfed by the coronavirus pandemic. The unanimous vote Wednesday came despite misgivings on both sides about whether it goes too far or not far enough and capped days of difficult negotiations as Washington confronted…

Timberwolves’ Towns says mother hospitalized with COVID-19

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – Minnesota Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns says his mother is hospitalized and in a medically-induced coma after contracting the new coronavirus. Towns talked about his mother’s condition Wednesday on his Instagram page and urged his followers to take COVID-19 seriously and practice social distancing. Towns says both his parents went to the hospital recently and were tested for…

Minnesota Lawmakers Will Reconvene to Bolster COVID-19 Fight

(AP Photo/Steve Karnowski) MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – Minnesota lawmakers are preparing to return to the Capitol to beef up the state’s fight against COVID-19 and help residents cope with the economic disruptions. House Speaker Melissa Hortman and Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka notified legislators late Tuesday they will reconvene Thursday. The House meets at noon while the Senate gathers at 2…

White House, Congress Agree on $2 Trillion Virus Rescue Bill

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House and Senate leaders of both parties announced an agreement early Wednesday on an unprecedented $2 trillion emergency bill to rush sweeping aid to businesses, workers and a health care system slammed by the coronavirus pandemic. Top White House aide Eric Ueland announced the agreement in a Capitol hallway shortly after midnight early Wednesday, capping…

Tokyo Olympics Officially Postponed Until 2021

TOKYO (AP) — The Tokyo Olympics were postponed until 2021 on Tuesday, ending weeks of speculation that the games could not go ahead as scheduled because of the coronavirus pandemic. The International Olympic Committee made the decision after speaking with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and local organizers. The IOC said the games will be held “no later than summer…

President Trump Says He Intends to Reopen Country in Weeks, Not Months

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump said Monday that he wants to reopen the country for business in weeks, not months, and he claimed, without evidence, that continued closures could result in more deaths than the coronavirus pandemic. “We can’t have the cure be worse than the problem,” Trump told reporters at a press briefing, echoing a midnight Sunday tweet….

Sen. Rand Paul Kept Working for Six Days after Virus Test

(AP Photo/Susan Walsh) (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) WASHINGTON (AP) — Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul was tested a week ago for the novel coronavirus, but continued working at the Capitol because he “felt that it was highly unlikely” he was sick since he had no symptoms of the illness, he said Monday. Paul also said he did not have direct contact with anyone…

Minnesota Court of Appeals Sends PolyMet Permit Back to MPCA

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Court of Appeals sent an air-emissions permit for the PolyMet copper-nickel mine back to state regulators for further review on Monday, giving another victory to environmental groups who oppose the project. The appeals court found that the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency did not adequately evaluate whether the air permit requested by PolyMet was…

Klobuchar’s Husband Tests Positive for Virus

WASHINGTON — Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar says husband John Bessler has tested positive for the coronavirus. The former presidential candidate said Bessler began feeling sick when she was in Minnesota and he was in Washington. She said he immediately quarantined himself. She said he sought a test and chest X-ray after he began coughing up blood, and was checked into…

Evers Orders Non-Essential Wisconsin Businesses Closed

(AP Photo/Andy Manis, File) MADISON, Wis.-Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers is ordering the closure of all non-essential businesses starting Tuesday, and urging people to stay at home to slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus that has killed four people in the state and infected at least nearly 400. Evers tweeted Monday that he would be signing the order on Tuesday….

First COVID-19 Death Confirmed in Minnesota

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – The Minnesota Department of Health has confirmed the state’s first death due to COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. Officials say a Ramsey County resident in their 80s died on Thursday. Minnesota Commissioner of Health Jan Malcolm said the death underscores the importance of protecting the most vulnerable residents in the state, especially those over 65…

Walz: Minnesotans May Need to Shelter in Place Eventually

On Friday the Number of Confirmed Cases Hit 115

(AP Photo/Jim Mone) MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Gov. Tim Walz said Friday that he might have to follow California’s lead at some point and order residents to shelter in place to try to slow the spread of COVID-19. “I certainly think it is a possibility,” Walz said in an interview on WCCO Radio on Friday morning, adding that outside experts and…

Milwaukee County Medical Examiner Investigating Possible Third COVID-19 Related Death

MILWAUKEE, Wis. – The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner says it was investigating the death of a 66-year-old man who died from complications of a COVID-19 infection. The medical examiner said the Milwaukee man had been hospitalized for several days prior to his death. MCMEO investigating the death of a 66 year old male from complications of Coronavirus (COVID-19) infection. Decedent…

Income Tax Filing Deadline Moved to July 15 From April 15

WASHINGTON (AP) – Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says the Trump administration has decided to push the income tax filing date to July 15 from April 15. Mnuchin announced the decision in a tweet Friday saying that at President Donald Trump’s direction “we are moving Tax Day from April 15 to July 15. All taxpayers and businesses will have this additional…

Kohl’s Temporarily Closes all 1,100 Stores

The Stores Will Be Closed Until at Least April 1

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Wisconsin-based retailer Kohl’s Corp. is closing all of its more than 1,100 stores nationwide in response to declining sales tied to the coronavirus pandemic. Kohl’s said the stores will be closed at least until April 1. The company planned to “support store associates with two calendar weeks of pay,” said Michelle Gass, Kohl’s chief executive officer in a…

Minnesota Bans Elective Surgeries in Response to COVID-19

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Minnesota health care providers must postpone elective surgeries and other medical procedures so they can focus their resources on responding to the anticipated surge of COVID-19 cases, Gov. Tim Walz ordered Thursday. The order, which also applies to non-emergency dental procedures, followed guidance issued by the federal government this week to delay elective procedures to conserve resources…

Minnesota COVID-19 Cases Hits 89

The New Cases Include One in Wadena County

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Minnesota rose to 89 on Thursday, up 12 from the day before.  The new cases include one in Wadena County in north-central Minnesota.  It’s the state’s first confirmed case so far north.  The count of confirmed cases from the Minnesota Department of Health is lower than the total number of…