Political

Only 2 Apply For Open Superior City Council Seat

Seat Was Graham Garfield's Who Resigned

SUPERIOR, Wis. – The application deadline is over in Superior, and two candidates are officially in the running to be appointed to the former council seat of Graham Garfield who resigned. Tylor Elm handed in 232 signatures of support with his application. Elm lost to Garfield in a recent election by one vote. The other candidate is Kara Schmidt who…

Dayton Vetoes Legislative Funding, Republicans Prepare for Legal Fight

House republicans are calling the governor's move unconstitutional and are threatening to sue

DULUTH, Minn. – Minnesota governor Mark Dayton signed the state’s budget and bonding bills Tuesday to avoid a state government shutdown, but now, he’s taking some serious heat after deciding to veto funding to the house and senate as a way to get lawmakers to fix some key issues included in the bills. House republicans are calling this move unconstitutional…

Judge Rules in Favor of Homemade Baked Goods Sales

DARLINGTON, Wis. (AP) -A Wisconsin judge has overturned a ban on selling homemade baked goods in the state. Lafayette County Judge Duane Jorgenson ruled Wednesday afternoon in favor of three women who’d challenged a state law they say made it impossible for home bakers to legally sell their treats. Jorgenson said in his oral ruling the ban primarily serves business…

State Legislators From Duluth Reflect on Recent Marathon Session

DULUTH, Minn. — The podium was well-lit at “The Garage,” in the Kirby Student Center at University of Minnesota Duluth. Students have recently departed for the summer, and just last week the Minnesota State Legislature completed a marathon session that included an overtime vote for a billion-dollar bonding bill. Now, arriving early Tuesday morning at that podium at UMD, the…

Governor Dayton Signs Budget Bills, Vetoes Minimum Wage and Paid Leave Preemption Bill

ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) – Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton has announced his decisions on the budget bills passed during a 75-hour special session that ended just before Memorial Day weekend. The governor has signed the nine budget bills and the bonding bill, and he will allow the tax bill to become law without his signature. The governor stood by his…

Wisconsin Lawmakers Looking to Sweeten the Deal for Beekeepers

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – Republican lawmakers want to sweeten the deal for Wisconsin beekeepers. A proposal from Rep. Amy Loudenbeck and Sen. Steve Nass would eliminate the state sales tax on bees and equipment used by beekeepers. Loudenbeck said at an Assembly committee hearing Tuesday the bill would extend exemptions given to farmers to beekeepers and help address the rapidly…

Wisconsin Transportation Budget Picture Improves

MADISON (AP) – Wisconsin’s transportation budget picture has improved by $93 million. The nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau on Tuesday told lawmakers that the roads fun will end the two-year budget cycle with nearly $102 million due to higher gas tax collections and lower debt service costs. The fund was originally projected to be just $8.4 million. The positive re-estimate comes…

Counties Can Now Hire Private Financial Firms for Audits

Will Save Counties Money

ST. PAUL, Minn.-Minnesota’s Court of Appeals has upheld a state law allowing counties to hire private firms for financial audits. It’s the second such court ruling involving the Legislature’s 2015 law that ignited controversy. State Auditor Rebecca Otto challenged the law, arguing it was an unconstitutional breech of her duties that puts taxpayers at risk. Republicans who spearheaded the change…

White House Communications Director Resigns

WASHINGTON (FOX NEWS) – Veteran GOP strategist Michael Dubke resigned as White House communications director on Tuesday, Dubke confirmed to Fox News. Asked about reports announcing his exit, Dubke told Fox News, “It is true.” He added: “It has been a privilege to serve this president.” Dubke said in a message to friends and associates that his reason for leaving…

Dayton’s Verdict Looms on Legislature’s Budget Bill

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – It’s time for Gov. Mark Dayton to decide: Should he sign the Legislature’s budget bills or veto them? The Democratic governor set himself a Tuesday deadline to act on budget bills. The Republican-controlled Legislature sent Dayton the remainder of a $46 billion budget last week during a three-day special session. Dayton has expressed some reservations…

Committee OKs Bills Sending More Kids to Troubled Prison

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – The Assembly Corrections Committee has approved two Republican bills that could send more kids to Wisconsin’s troubled youth prison for longer stints. Currently judges can sentence children 14 and older to the prison for up to three years for certain serious crimes. One bill would expand the list of crimes to include all felonies. The other…

Duluth Lawmakers’ Hard Work Helps Local Projects Make State Bonding Bill

The bonding bill includes more than $80 million in funding for many big Duluth projects

DULUTH, Minn. – State lawmakers wrapped up a special legislative session by passing a state budget and a nearly billion dollar bonding bill. With the bill awaiting Governor Dayton’s signature, local lawmakers are calling this session a success for projects in Duluth and northeast Minnesota. “There was a lot of uncertainty, so we worked really hard the last few days…

Trump Budget Dismays Families Hit by Opioid Crisis

NEW YORK (AP) – President Donald Trump’s budget proposal weakens insurance coverage for drug addiction treatment and cuts back funding for research and prevention programs. Some see that as a betrayal of those who trusted his campaign pledge to make the opioid epidemic a top priority. Those most frustrated include parents of those lost to the epidemic who shared their…

Minnesota Legislature passes $46B budget in special session

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Minnesota’s Legislature has finished passing a $46 billion budget in a special session. It took three extra days and some horse-trading to win crucial Democratic votes. But the Republican-controlled Legislature passed its final budget bills early Friday morning. The overtime began Tuesday morning after lawmakers passed the constitutionally mandated deadline to finish a budget by…

Trump Travel Ban Blocked; Fight Headed for Supreme Court

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump’s revised travel ban “speaks with vague words of national security, but in context drips with religious intolerance, animus and discrimination,” a federal appeals court said Thursday in ruling against the executive order targeting six Muslim-majority countries. Trump’s administration vowed to take the fight to the U.S. Supreme Court. In a 10-13 vote, the 4th…

Minnesota Budget Discussion Continues

Transportation Infrastructure Money Comes Forward

ST. PAUL, Minn.-Legislative leaders have released a bill to borrow more than $1 billion for public construction projects that includes more than $250 million for transportation infrastructure. The bonding bill is expected to the final piece of legislation that lawmakers take up during the special session, which was envisioned as a one-day event for Tuesday but entered its third day…

Finance Committee Approves UW Tuition Freeze

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – The Legislature’s Republican-controlled budget committee has ditched Gov. Scott Walker’s call to cut University of Wisconsin tuition by 5-percent. The Joint Finance Committee instead voted 12-4 Thursday to continue a tuition freeze for two more years. It’s been in place for four years. Walker said earlier Thursday that continuing the freeze would be a “huge victory”…

Wisconsin Budget Hits Snag

Budget Still Likely to Pass

MADISON, Wis.-A Republican state senator plans to vote against the state budget as it currently stands, complicating passage of the spending plan. A spokesman for Sen. Steve Nass said Thursday that as the budget stands now, Nass would vote against it. Nass spokesman Mike Mikalsen says elimination of Gov. Scott Walker’s proposed 5 percent University of Wisconsin tuition cut and…

Walker Signs Bill Allowing Minors at Music Festivals

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – Gov. Scott Walker has signed a bill that makes clear that unaccompanied minors can attend music festivals where alcohol is being served. Walker signed the bill Wednesday. he says it makes sense to allow the exemption, which also exists for hotels, grocery stores, bowling alleys, movie theaters, and sports stadiums. Supporters in the Legislature introduced the…

Minnesota Lawmaker Aims to Make it Harder to Avoid Vaccines

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Minnesota health officials say there are almost 70 confirmed cases of measles in the state so far this year, and a state lawmaker is hoping to make it harder for parents to opt out of vaccinating their children. Minnesota Public Radio reports that nearly 2,000 kindergartners weren’t immunized against measles this year because their parents…

Legislature Misses Self-Imposed Deadline to Pass Budget

ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) – Lawmakers at the Minnesota State Capitol have missed another deadline after working through the night to try to pass the two-year state budget. Gov. Mark Dayton called a special session immediately after the regular session ended on Monday at midnight to pass the unfinished bills, but lawmakers missed their self-imposed 7:01 a.m. deadline Wednesday morning….

Carlton Voters to Decide School Future

Referendum Up for Vote August 8th

CARLTON, Minn. – The future of Carlton High school is up for a vote August 8th. That’s when voters in the school district cast ballots on a two question referendum. The first, to approve more than $23.5 million to renovate South Terrace Elementary and build a new high school on the site.  The second would approve another $3.3 million for…

Multiple Bills Being Looked at by Wisconsin Legislature

Budget Talks Continue in Wisconsin

MADISON, Wis. – College students would be eligible for more financial aid under a plan the Wisconsin Legislature’s budget committee has approved. Gov. Scott Walker’s budget calls for increasing state grants by $5.6 million for University of Wisconsin System students; $2.6 for private college students; and $1.8 million for technical college students over the next two years. The new money…

Trump Budget: More for the Military, Less for the Poor

The government hasn't seen a surplus since 2001

(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump on Tuesday sent Congress a $4.1 trillion federal spending plan that promises faster economic growth and steep cuts to programs for the poor in a bid to balance the government’s books over the next decade. The proposed 2018 budget immediately came under attack by Democrats, and even some GOP allies deemed it…

Minnesota Lawmakers Push to Finalize Budget Deal

Lawmakers Doubtful Deal will Pass; Look Toward Special Session

ST. PAUL, Minn. – One-hundred twenty days have passed since the Minnesota Legislature first started work on the state’s budget bill. Monday evening the clock is ticking before the state constitution calls for a deal to be reached or the session will end without an agreement in place, resulting in a special session. “It’s compromise and it’s democracy and it’s…

Minnesota lawmakers enter final day to wrap up budget

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Minnesota lawmakers are down to their last day to wrap up several major budget bills to avoid needing extra time to finish the work of the legislative session. The House and Senate reached deals late Sunday on water buffers to pass an environment bill and agreed on funding for colleges and universities over objections from…

GOP Lawmakers Crafting Budget Bills to Send Dayton

Republicans, Governor Face Monday Deadline for Budget Deal

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP)  Minnesota’s Republican lawmakers started working over the weekend on several budget bills to send to Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton. But the governor hasn’t indicated he is willing sign any of the bills that come out of Saturday’s committees. He said he was blindsided by the GOP’s second attempt to push forward legislation without an agreement. The…

Hakes Considers Congressional Run

Former Cook Co. Commissioner May Run for the 8th District Seat

GRAND MARAIS, Minn. – Former Cook County Commissioner Sue Hakes announced she formed a Congressional Exploratory Committee to look into running for Minnesota’s 8th District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. “When I think about Minnesota’s 8th District, I think people first” Hakes said in a press release. “I want to fight the current administration’s budgetary goals which chip…

Jan Swanson Commits To Council Run

Jan Swanson Kicked Off Her Campaign Tonight

Duluth, Minn. An at large candidate has put her name on the ballot to possibly become part of the Duluth City Council. Jan Swanson kicked off her campaign tonight at the Incline Station. There she met with residents and shared what would be her platform. She plans to focus on three things.  Lowering taxes to drive more businesses to the…

Supreme Court Review Sought in Sex Offender Program Case

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – Attorneys for more than 700 residents of Minnesota’s sex offender treatment program are taking their case to the U.S. Supreme Court. The attorneys filed a petition Friday asking the nation’s highest court to review their case. They claim the Minnesota Sex Offender Program is unconstitutional because only a handful of offenders have ever been granted provisional release….

Budget Battle Continues in Minnesota Legislature

Still $1 Billion Apart on Spending Between Democrats and Republicans

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Minnesota’s Republican legislative leaders and Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton have resumed negotiations aimed at settling the state budget. The two sides were back in talks Friday behind closed doors, with a Monday deadline for the Legislature to adjourn. They traded offers earlier in the week but progress froze Thursday. They are roughly $1 billion apart…

REAL ID: What You Need to Know

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Minnesotans will be able to get a REAL ID compliant driver’s license and ID card next year, under a law signed by Governor Dayton, Thursday. The Minnesota Department of Public Safety Driver and Vehicle Services (DPS- DVS) will begin the process of meeting federal requirements set by the REAL ID Act, which was enacted in 2005….

Minnesota Bill Against Genital Mutilation Raises Concern

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Some members of Minnesota’s immigrant and refugee communities are opposing legislation that would impose stiff penalties for parents involved in female genital mutilation, slowing the bill’s momentum in the Legislature. The Star Tribune reports that nonprofit group Isuroon, the Council for Minnesotans of African Heritage and other groups say the legislation carries overly harsh punishment…

Local Projects Rely on Yet-to-Be-Passed State Bonding Bill

Projects Like Duluth Steam Plant and St. Louis River Clean-Up Need State Funding

DULUTH, Minn. – The deadline is Monday for this year’s Minnesota legislative session to adjourn, and with no budget agreement in place yet, elected officials from all over Minnesota have been in St. Paul calling attention to the needs of cities across the state. Projects like the Duluth International Airport runway reconstruction and the St. Louis River clean up need…

Dayton Vetoes Bill for Teacher Licensing Overhaul

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Governor Mark Dayton has vetoed a bill that would have overhauled the way Minnesota licenses teachers. The proposal, which passed both chambers with bipartisan support, would have created a new licensing board and a four-tiered licensing system, making it easier to license teachers who are trained out of state or have unconventional backgrounds. Supporters say…

REAL ID Finally a Done Deal in Minnesota

Tim Blotz - Fox 9 KMSP

ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) – Minnesota lawmakers have reached a deal to get the state in compliance with the federal REAL ID law. The compromise bill passed the House on a 120-11 vote late Wednesday afternoon, then passed the Senate on a 57-8 vote. Thursday morning, Gov. Mark Dayton signed the bill, making Minnesota the last state in the nation…

First On FOX: Former Superior Councilor’s Ex-Fiance Vying For His Seat

'It's In No Way Revenge Or Anything Like That'

SUPERIOR, Wis. – The ex-fiancé of former Superior city councilor Graham Garfield broke her silence first to FOX 21’s Dan Hanger Wednesday. Kara Schmidt talked about the incident that lead to four domestic abuse charges against Garfield, as well as her jump into the race to replace Garfield’s former council seat. “It’s heart shattering. I didn’t expect my whole life…

Wisconsin Democrats Push for Statewide Use-of-Force Policies

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – Democratic lawmakers from Madison and Milwaukee want to set statewide standards for when and how law enforcement officers should use deadly force. Representatives Chris Taylor, Evan Goyke, and David Bowen and Senator LaTonya Johnson held a news conference Tuesday to introduce a package of bills. The proposals would require law enforcement agencies across the state to…

Minnesota Lawmakers Set to Vote on Federal ID Standards

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Minnesota legislators finally appear to have a deal on Real ID, the enhanced identification that’ll eventually be required to pass airport security. Minnesota Public Radio reports the deal to bring the state’s driver’s licenses and identification cards up to federal security standards was delayed by a dispute over giving driver’s licenses for immigrants without proper…

Superior Common Council to Hold Special Election for 6th District Seat

SUPERIOR, Wis – The City of Superior Common Council has announced it will be holding a Special Election on April 3, 2018 to fill the vacant 6th District Aldermanic position, formerly held by Graham Garfield who stepped down earlier this month. Until the Special Election, the Council is seeking applicants to fill the position for a one-year term. Qualified applicants…

Superior Councilors Approves Application Process For Vacant Council Seat

City Council Will Chose New Councilor During June 6th Meeting

Superior, Wis. – Superior city councilors convened Tuesday to move forward with the resignation of councilor Graham Garfield who is facing four charges of domestic abuse. Councilors officially accepted Garfield’s resignation Tuesday night. They also made a decision on what to do with the vacant council seat. In a vote across the board councilors chose to appoint someone to Garfield’s…

White House: Cyberattack has not Affected US Government

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump’s homeland security adviser says that so far, no U.S. federal systems have been affected by the global cyberattack. Tom Bossert says the U.S. government has been closely monitoring the attack, which has affected an estimated 300,000 machines in 150 countries. He said a few U.S. businesses, including FedEx were affected. Computers across the world…

Johnson Calls Possible Trump Recording “Troubling”

Wisconsin Senator Not Calling for Special Investigator

MADISON, Wis. (AP) _ Wisconsin Republican Sen. Ron Johnson says it “would be troubling” if President Donald Trump recorded conversations with former FBI Director James Comey. Trump tweeted Friday that Comey “better hope that there are no `tapes’ of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press.” Johnson told reporters Saturday he interpreted that to mean Comey may have…

Gov. Dayton Reels One In at Opener

The Governor Caught a Smallmouth Bass

ST. CLOUD, Minn. (AP) Gov. Mark Dayton caught a 3-pound, 17-and-a-half-inch bass during the annual Governor’s Fishing Opener. The Democratic governor shared a pontoon boat with Republican legislative leaders on Saturday. They went out on the Mississippi River in St. Cloud. Dayton told reporters that no one discussed the budget, after talks stalled last week. He says budget talks will…