A Duluth agency that houses and supports 250 people with disabilities and mental illness in homes and other facilities from Cook to Cambridge, Minn., was awarded a portion of $1 million in grants from the Minnesota Department of Human Services, said a state news release on Monday.
A popular public transit concept will be studied this year to test its compatibility to West Duluth, where between 10,000-12,000 passengers travel by bus every weekday. Mostly they board along Grand Avenue on their way to downtown and back. Beginning in June and through the rest of the year, transportation planners in the Twin Ports will study to see if "bus rapid transit," or elements of it, might work in West Duluth, where Duluth Transit Authority ridership is twice what it is in the city's eastern half.
In an effort to attract more mushers and infuse new energy into their event, organizers of the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon have agreed to shorten the iconic winter race which skirts the North Shore and evokes a historic mail route. The race's board of directors voted unanimously this week to make the 2019 race between 290-300 miles — down from this year's 373. Details of the new course and the likelihood of making Beargrease a 12-dog race instead of 14 dogs per team are still to be decided, organizers said.
Try as they might to turn the topical dial to health care, spending or immigration in the open race for the 8th Congressional District seat, the candidates' views on mining have dominated the early part of the November midterm election cycle. Shaping the discussion are their thoughts on precious metals mining in the Lake Superior basin. "Mining equals economy and economy equals a good job and a good job equals a family," Republican Pete Stauber said in a mining-rich speech prior to receiving his party's endorsement in Park Rapids earlier this month.
Phil Pumphrey pulled into town last week and immediately went to work at the helm of the Duluth Transit Authority — taking over as only the second permanent general manager in the past 39 years. House hunting was in the hands of a local real estate agent and the moving van would have to come later. There were planners to fill and employees to meet. "I started out as a bus driver," Pumphrey said. "I've always liked meeting people."
The Duluth Transit Authority's Jim Caywood spent last week in Greenville, S.C., where he was the first person locally to set eyes on the electric buses coming to Duluth this summer. "The first bus will be here about the second week of June," said Caywood, the DTA's director of maintenance. "It's just about done."
Prior to attending the first of 18 listening sessions in 18 counties in 18 days, 8th Congressional District DFL candidate Joe Radinovich went for a run Tuesday at the Duluth YMCA. If his first listening session was an indication, he'll need to keep running hard. Among the two dozen-plus people who showed up to meet with Radinovich at Clyde Iron Works in the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Duluth was Renee Van Nett — Duluth city councilor and an undecided voter in the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party.
Three weeks ago today, Leah Phifer ended a congressional campaign which just days before led every ballot at the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party's 8th District endorsement convention. Despite being the front-runner, Phifer failed to earn enough delegates for the party's endorsement. Instead of strengthening the campaign's resolve, the convention experience yielded a reversal and saw Phifer fold up her candidacy. She left the race saying her campaign was always reliant on winning the endorsement and that she saw no way forward in terms of fundraising without full party backing.
The prospect of protests in Minnesota along the Enbridge Line 3 pipeline construction corridor is forcing officials to consider ways to pay for law enforcement responses and other associated costs. "It's clearly on our minds," St. Louis County Sheriff Ross Litman said. "If the resources required go beyond the expense associated, it's a legitimate concern." In a letter last week to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission, and copied to Gov. Mark Dayton and other lawmakers, the Association of Minnesota Counties called the expenses "out of ordinary."
By sunrise Friday, what remained of a Cloquet carpet store was smoldering and continuing to flare with small fires, but the scene was under control along Minnesota Highway 33