Author: The Associated Press

Face Masks Made Mandatory on All UW Campuses This Fall

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Face masks will be mandatory inside all University of Wisconsin campus buildings statewide under a policy adopted unanimously by the Board of Regents. Interim UW President Tommy Thompson said at Thursday’s meeting there was no way to open safely amid the coronavirus pandemic without the mandate. Thompson strongly advocated for the mandatory mask policy at his…

Supreme Court Rules Manhattan DA Can Obtain Trump Taxes

(AP PHOTO) UPDATE: WASHINGTON (AP) – The Supreme Court has issued a mixed verdict on demands for President Donald Trump’s financial records. The decisions will keep his tax returns, banking, and other documents out of the public eye for the time being. The court kept a hold on President Donald Trump’s financial records that Congress has been seeking for more…

Tornado in Western Minnesota Leaves One Dead, Several Structures Flattened

The Tornado Struck at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday Near Dalton, Minnesota

DALTON, Minn. (AP) – Authorities say a powerful tornado damaged farms and left one person dead in western Minnesota as severe storms moved across parts of the Midwest. The National Weather Service says the tornado struck at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday near Dalton. Three farmsteads were hit, and one of those farmhouses was flattened. Otter Tail County says two people were…

One Former Officer Charged in George Floyd Death Seeks Case Dismissal

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — An attorney for one of four Minneapolis police officers charged in the death of George Floyd is asking to have his client’s case dismissed, saying there isn’t probable cause to charge him based on all of the evidence in the case and the law. In court filings made public Wednesday, Thomas Lane’s attorney, Earl Gray, painted an…

Court: Some Employers can Refuse to Offer Free Birth Control

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court has upheld Trump administration rules allowing some employers to refuse to provide free contraceptive coverage on religious grounds. The high court on Wednesday said the Trump administration acted properly when it allowed more employers who cite a religious or moral objection to opt-out of covering birth control. The Obama-era health law said most employers…

University of Minnesota to Help International Students Comply With ICE Directive

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The University of Minnesota is reviewing its fall semester plans to make sure that international students aren’t forced to leave the country under new guidance from federal immigration authorities. The guidelines Monday from the U.S. Immigration and Customers Enforcement say international students must leave the U.S. or transfer to another college if their schools plan to offer classes…

Trump Says he Will Pressure States to Reopen Schools in Fall

(AP Photo/Alex Brandon) (AP) – President Donald Trump says he will pressure governors to reopen schools and colleges this fall, arguing that some want to keep schools closed for political reasons against the will of families. Trump said he is “very much going to put pressure on governors and everybody else to open the schools.” Trump did not immediately explain…

US Notifies UN of Withdrawal From World Health Organization Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration has formally notified the United Nations of its withdrawal from the World Health Organization, although the pullout won’t take effect until next year, meaning it could be rescinded under a new administration or if circumstances change. The withdrawal notification makes good on President Donald Trump’s vow in late May to terminate U.S. participation in…

Minnesota Headed for Another Special Session Next Week

(AP Photo/Steve Karnowski) ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Gov. Tim Walz is prepared to call Minnesota lawmakers into a special session that would begin Monday. The session is triggered by an extension of the peacetime authority that Walz has used to manage the coronavirus in Minnesota, Minnesota Public Radio News reported. The first special session this summer came soon after the…

Wisconsin Won’t Name Businesses with Multiple COVID-19 Cases

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Wisconsin Department of Health Services is retreating from its original plans to name businesses and other places where there have been at least two confirmed coronavirus cases after business groups and Republican lawmakers opposed the idea. The department told local health officials in a call that it initially planned to start naming the businesses on…

New Rules: Foreign Students Must Leave US if Classes go Online

(AP) – New federal guidelines say international students will be forced to leave the U.S. or transfer to another college if their schools offer classes entirely online this fall. The guidelines provide additional pressure for campuses to reopen even amid growing concerns about the recent spread of COVID-19 among young adults. President Donald Trump has insisted that schools and universities…

UW Faculty Worried About Fall Semester as Virus Surges

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — University of Wisconsin-Madison instructors are growing more worried that the campus can’t reopen safely this fall as the coronavirus continues to surge among young people. The university plans to reopen as scheduled but classes with more than 100 students will be held online only and all in-person instruction will stop at Thanksgiving to prevent students from…

Minnesota Senator Investigated by State Board Over COVID-19 Comments

(Scott Jensen/Facebook) ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — State Sen. Scott Jensen said he’s being investigated by the Minnesota State Board of Medical Practice for some public comments he made as a doctor about the coronavirus. In a video released Sunday, the Chaska Republican said the investigation related to his earlier criticism of the Minnesota Department of Health for following federal…

Minnesota Officials Back Mask Mandate Amid Spikes Elsewhere

ST. PAUL, Minn.-Health experts are urging Gov. Tim Walz to require masks in public statewide amid concerns over the spike in coronavirus cases elsewhere. Nationwide, the infection curve rising in 40 of 50 states. Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm says the evidence is increasingly clear that masks are effective. Walz says he’s reevaluating the situation daily. Minnesota has seen an uptick…

Minneapolis Commission to Hold Two Hearings on Police Proposal

MINNEAPOLIS-Some members of a commission reviewing a proposal to dismantle the Minneapolis Police Department expressed concern about the fast-tracked timeline they must follow to get the issue on the November ballot. The Minneapolis Charter Commission voted Wednesday that it will have two public hearings on the issue. The first will be July 15. The City Council is proposing to amend…

Walleye Fishing on Mille Lacs Lake Closed for July

ST. PAUL, Minn.-Walleye fishing on Minnesota’s Mille Lacs Lake has closed for July. The planned closure took effect Wednesday, in anticipation of a fall walleye season. Officials with the Department of Natural Resources determined closing the popular lake to walleye fishing in July would provide the best chance for walleye fishing this fall, by reducing hooking mortality when water temperatures…

Health Officials Close Indoor Service at Madison Bars

(William Glasheen/The Post-Crescent via AP) MADISON, Wis. (AP) – Public health officials are closing indoor service at bars in Madison as the Fourth of July weekend approaches and as the number of reported coronavirus cases accelerate. Many of the new cases involve young people in Wisconsin’s largest college community. The order from Public Health Madison & Dane County allows bars…

Pharmaceutical Industry Sues to Block Minnesota Insulin Law

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The drug industry is suing to overturn a Minnesota law that took effect Wednesday that requires them to provide emergency and longer-term insulin supplies to diabetics who can’t afford them. The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, also known as PhRMA, filed a lawsuit in federal court in Minnesota late Tuesday, just hours before the…

University of Minnesota: 7 Students Test COVID-19 Positive

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The University of Minnesota said Tuesday that seven athletes from “multiple sports” have tested positive for the coronavirus. The Gopher Athletics Department conducted 170 COVID-19 tests during June, and seven athletes tested positive. The school said students who test positive are entered into a protocol and asked to self-isolate. Those students will have access to all necessary…

Fauci: US ‘Going in Wrong Direction’ in Coronavirus Outbreak

WASHINGTON (AP) – The U.S. is “going in the wrong direction” with the coronavirus surging badly enough that Dr. Anthony Fauci told senators Tuesday some regions are putting the entire country at risk — just as schools and colleges are wrestling with how to safely reopen. With about 40,000 new cases being reported a day, Fauci, the government’s top infectious…

University of Minnesota, Edina, Rochester Adopt Face Mask Requirements

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The University of Minnesota as well as the cities of Edina and Rochester have new requirements on wearing face masks in public places as the number of coronavirus cases and deaths continue to climb in Minnesota. University officials sent an e-mail to students Monday announcing that beginning Wednesday, all faculty, students, and visitors to the campuses will…

Judge Warns of Possible Move of Trial in George Floyd Death

(Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office via AP) MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A Minnesota judge on Monday warned that he’s likely to move the trials of four police officers charged in George Floyd’s death out of Minneapolis if public officials and attorneys don’t stop talking about the case. Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill stopped short of issuing a gag order on attorneys, but…

Democrats Say no August Election Changes, Look to November

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — An attorney representing Democrats in a federal lawsuit seeking to make absentee voting easier told a judge Monday that his clients are no longer looking to implement changes in time for Wisconsin’s August primary and are now looking ahead to the November presidential election. The Democratic National Committee and the state Democratic Party filed a lawsuit…

Supreme Court Strikes Down Louisiana Abortion Clinic Law

WASHINGTON (AP) –The Supreme Court has struck down a Louisiana law regulating abortion clinics, reasserting a commitment to abortion rights over fierce opposition from dissenting conservative justices in the first big abortion case of the Trump era. Chief Justice John Roberts joined with his four more liberal colleagues in ruling that the law requiring doctors who perform abortions to have…

Four Ex-Officers due Back in Court in George Floyd’s Death

(from left, Derek Chauvin, Tuo Thao, Thomas Lane, and J. Alexander Kueng) MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The four former Minneapolis police officers charged in the death of George Floyd are due in court Monday for a hearing that could deal with bail amounts and other issues. It’s the second pretrial hearing for the men, who were fired after Floyd’s May 25…

Health Care Workers Forced to Reuse Masks Due to Shortage

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — 3M Co. says global demand for N95 masks continues to far exceed supply. The Maplewood-based conglomerate corporation says it has doubled the production of N95 masks this year. But, with too few N95 respirators to go around, nurses and other health care workers are being forced to reuse the masks even though the coronavirus can live on…

Second Minnesota Prison Inmate Dies After Testing Positive for COVID-19

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – State corrections officials say a second Minnesota prison inmate has died after testing positive for COVID-19. The Minnesota Department of Corrections says 71-year-old Leroy Wallace Bergstrom died at a hospital on Saturday. The department says Bergstrom tested positive for COVID-19 on June 10. An autopsy to determine the cause of death is pending. Bergstrom was…

FBI Investigates Apparent Noose Found in Minnesota Firefighter’s Locker

BLOOMINGTON, Minn. (AP) – The FBI is investigating after a piece of rope resembling a noose was found in a Black firefighter’s locker in the Minneapolis suburb of Bloomington. An FBI spokesman confirmed Saturday the bureau is investigating and said that the case is in its initial stages. Bloomington officials had asked the FBI to investigate. Officials say that the…

Appeals Court: Trump Wrongly Diverted $2.5B for Border Wall

(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, file) SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal appeals court on Friday ruled against the Trump administration in its transfer of $2.5 billion from military construction projects to build sections of the U.S. border wall with Mexico, ruling it illegally sidestepped Congress, which gets to decide how to use the funds. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of…

Council Advances Plan to Dismantle Minneapolis Police Dept

(courtesy: CNN) MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minneapolis City Council on Friday unanimously approved a radical proposal to change the city charter that would allow the police department to be dismantled, following mass public criticism of law enforcement over the killing of George Floyd. The 12-0 vote is just the first step in a process that faces significant bureaucratic obstacles to…

Mayo Clinic to End Pay Cuts, Recall Workers

ROCHESTER, Minn. — Mayo Clinic is ending pay cuts that the Minnesota-based health system imposed to deal with a patient downturn caused by the novel coronavirus. The Star Tribune reports Mayo plans to restore pay and return furloughed workers this summer. In April, Mayo announced plans to cut pay to more than 20,000 employees and seek furloughs when elective surgeries were halted…

Minnesota Prison Inmate Dies After Testing COVID-19 Positive

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A Minnesota prison inmate has died after testing positive for COVID-19 earlier this month, state corrections officials said Thursday. The Minnesota Department of Corrections said Adrian Raymaar Keys, 43, died Tuesday night at a hospital. Keys was an inmate at the Minnesota Correctional Facility in Faribault and tested positive for COVID-19 along with a number…

Falvey: ‘A few’ Twins Players Test Positive for Covid-19

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. (Fox 9) – At least “a few” Minnesota Twins players have tested positive for Coronavirus within the last few days, Chief Baseball Officer Derek Falvey said Thursday. Falvey held a nearly 60-minute Zoom session with reporters Thursday morning on several topics. He declined to specify how many players have had positive Covid-19 tests, declined to name any of the players,…

Judge Shuts Down Energy Pipeline in Michigan’s Great Lakes

(Richard Tsong-Taatarii/Star Tribune via AP File) DETROIT (AP) — A judge has shut down an energy pipeline in Michigan’s Great Lakes, granting a request from the state. The move comes after the owner reported problems with a support piece deep below the surface of the Straits of Mackinac. The judge told Enbridge to close Line 5 as “immediately as possible”…

Segway to End Production

(AP) — Segway says it will end production of its namesake two-wheeled personal transporter, popular with tourists and police officers but perhaps better known for its high-profile crashes. The company, founded in 1999 by inventor Dean Kamen, will retire the Segway PT on July 15. The company said 21 employees will be laid off. In 2017, Segway got into the…

Disney Delays Southern California Theme Park Reopenings

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Disney is postponing the mid-July reopening of its Southern California theme parks until it receives guidelines from the state, the company announced Wednesday. Disney had hoped to reopen Disneyland and Disney California Adventure in Anaheim on July 17 after a four-month closure due to the coronavirus. But the state has indicated it won’t issue guidelines until…

Wisconsin Governor Activates National Guard After Violence

(Emily Hamer/Wisconsin State Journal via AP) MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin’s governor has activated the National Guard to protect state properties after a night of violence that included the toppling of two statues outside the state Capitol and an attack on a state senator. Protesters also threw a Molotov cocktail into a government building and attempted to break into the…

Minnesota Sues Oil Companies, Institute Over Climate Change

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison is suing ExxonMobil, Koch Industries, and the American Petroleum Institute, alleging they deceived and defrauded Minnesotans about climate change. The lawsuit filed Wednesday in state court in Minnesota accuses the oil companies and trade group of consumer fraud and deceptive trade practices. “We’re here suing these defendants — API, ExxonMobil,…

Data: Minnesota Will See Increase in Food Insecurity

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — More Minnesota residents will lack access to sufficient food in the coming months in wake of a disrupted economy amid the coronavirus pandemic. Food assistance needs will peak in September to 735,000 Minnesota residents who are “food insecure,” according to projections released Wednesday by Second Harvest Heartland and consulting firm McKinsey & Co. That number reflects 13%…

Crowds Tear Down Statues, Attack Wisconsin State Senator

(credit: Fox 9/Storyful) MADISON (AP) – Crowds outside the Wisconsin State Capitol tore down two statues and attacked a state senator amid protests following the arrest of a Black man who was at a restaurant with a megaphone and a baseball bat. Video released by the Madison Police Department shows the man talking through the megaphone Tuesday while walking near the restaurant’s…

MLB Plans 60-Game Slate, Shortest Since 1878

NEW YORK (AP) – Major League Baseball plans to unilaterally issue a 60-game schedule for its shortest season since 1878 after the players’ association rejected a negotiated deal of the same length, putting the sport on track for a combative and possibly unhappy return to the field amid the coronavirus pandemic. Six days after baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred and union…

Minntac to Restart Production Lines Next Month

DULUTH, Minn. – U.S. Steel says they plan to restart production lines at its Minntac mine as early as next month. United Steelworkers Local 1938 representatives confirmed on Tuesday that production lines 6 and 7 are expected to restart on July 27. Operations for the lines were originally planned to be stalled until August. Union reps also say maintenance workers…

Wisconsin State Officials Release Guidance on Reopening Schools

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Flexibility will be key in reopening classrooms in Wisconsin’s 421 public school districts amid the coronavirus pandemic, state officials said Monday in releasing guidance on the new school year. The Department of Public Instruction said school districts should be prepared to shift between in-person, physically-distanced, and virtual learning as they deal with changing aspects of COVID-19….

Minnesota Special Session Ends With No Deal on Policing

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – Minnesota legislative leaders traded barbs Saturday after a special session collapsed Saturday with no deal on revamping policing following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. The Republican-controlled Senate adjourned just after 6 a.m. Saturday. GOP Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka repeatedly had said that Friday was his deadline for adjournment. Gazelka blamed “behind the scenes arm-twisting”…