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The Memo: What to know in business this week for Nov. 13

The Number: 16,316

That's how many thank you cards you should have mailed before Saturday, since that's how many veterans live in St. Louis County, according to state data. While the unemployment rate has fallen to 4 percent for Minnesota's veterans, just four out of five former service members are participating in the workforce. DEED says: "As the labor market tightens in the region and the state, businesses can attract and retain the skills, knowledge and abilities that veterans provide to the workplace."

The Word

"Enbridge is by far the safest and most meticulous company we have ever worked for, even more so than the Army Corps of Engineers," Matthew Gordon of Gordon Construction, a Native American-owned company based on the White Earth Indian Reservation, said in a video Enbridge posted on its website recently. While official approval of the Line 3 pipeline replacement is debated over hearings at the capital that continue this week, the company is still seeking the public's approval of the pipeline plans any way it can.

The Lead

Minnesota Power took a hard look at adding battery storage to its power supply and told the state its conclusion was: "Not now." That's not a direct quote, but filings made to the Public Utilities Commission regarding the utility's proposed natural gas plant in Superior show some interest in battery storage, which is a way to capture and use wind and solar power when it's dark and windless as opposed to firing up a fossil fuel plant. Minnesota Power said that "battery storage is continuing to become more efficient, and costs are declining," but it's waiting for a more economical opportunity to jump in.

The Happy Hour

No, you read the sign correctly. That snazzy brick-and-glass storefront downtown has indeed become a Domino's. The pizza-and-more chain has opened its new location at 112 E. Second St. recently, leaving behind an empty storefront on Central Entrance.

The Meeting: PolyMet CEO

PolyMet CEO Jon Cherry is talking during a chamber lunch at the Kitchi Gammi Club on Tuesday, which you probably already know since the event is full. Go to to learn more or just wait to hear me tell you about it.

The Memo is a weekly roundup of things to know, ya know? Send business news of all kinds to and give battery-powered business reporter Brooks Johnson a call every now and then at (218) 723-5329.

Brooks Johnson

Brooks is an investigative/enterprise reporter and business columnist at the Duluth News Tribune.

(218) 723-5329