Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.
- Member for
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ST. PAUL -- The Minnesota Department of Transportation intentionally withheld bridge construction documents from a House committee, its chairman says, and he is ready to issue rare subpoenas to obtain them if state officials don't give him the paperwork within a month. The subpoena threat came Thursday as the House Commerce Committee investigated lengthy delays in finishing the second half of a Mississippi River bridge connecting Dakota and Washington counties. Lt. Gov.
ST. PAUL -- Look for virtual "welcome" signs in Minnesota's northern forests. "Rather than having a series of private landowners put up 'no trespassing' signs, we are putting up 'welcome' signs for Minnesota citizens to enjoy the great outdoors," Gov.
ST. PAUL -- State, private and local bridge inspectors are poring over bridges across Minnesota as the two-month anniversary of a Minneapolis bridge collapse arrives Monday. State inspectors and a private contractor working for the Minnesota Department of Transportation face a Dec. 1 deadline to fulfill Gov. Tim Pawlenty's promise to check all bridges.
ST. PAUL -- It's either a technicality or an illegality. The fate of road and bridge construction projects across Minnesota depends on the decision. Gov. Tim Pawlenty wants a legislative committee to rubber stamp what he calls a routine request to allow his administration to spend more money than planned in wake of the Aug. 1 Minneapolis bridge collapse. "It is nothing more than a technicality," he said Tuesday. However, Sen.
ST. PAUL -- Dan McElroy says it won't take much money to make a difference in rural Minnesota, and the $70 million Gov.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota's pioneering 32-year-old anti-smoking law gets a facelift Oct. 1. That is when the Freedom to Breathe Act takes effect, banning smoking from almost all indoor areas other than homes and private vehicles.
ST. PAUL -- A farm bill debate that moved swiftly in the U.S. House is crawling along in the Senate, where Democrats say their proposal is still weeks, if not months, from completion. Meanwhile, congressional leaders say the resignation of U.S.
ST. PAUL -- Paying higher taxes is not something taxpayers usually favor, but like a loaded truck rumbling down the interstate, it appears there is so much momentum behind increasing transportation funding that it can't be stopped. Legislative leaders and Gov. Tim Pawlenty's staff are working on details, but several taxes are likely to increase in the wake of the Aug.
FALCON HEIGHTS, Minn.
ST. PAUL - Minnesota and North Dakota officials closed a northwestern Minnesota bridge three months after an inspection showed no serious problems, but Minnesota inspectors today said the bridge near Drayton, N.D., was not about to collapse. The Tuesday night closure was to allow crews to repair a crack found in a steel support, Minnesota Bridge Engineer Dan Dorgan said. A May inspection showed a minor crack in a weld, but a special inspection Tuesday - part of a program of special inspections Gov. Tim Pawlenty ordered after a Minneapolis bridge collapsed Aug.