All Twin Cities stories

Minnesota's gas tax fight is back

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Minnesota House Democrats have quietly revived a push to raise the state's gas taxes.

What's happening: A transportation budget bill released this week proposes increasing the tax by a projected 5 cents over the next four years, based on inflation.

  • Additional revenue for roads and transit would come from higher motor vehicle taxes and a 0.5% transit sales tax in the metro.

How Minnesota's oldest Black-owned newspaper is covering the Chauvin trial

Screenshot: Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder

Interest in the Derek Chauvin trial is giving new reach to the state's oldest Black-owned newspaper.

What's happening: "People are reading us from all over the country," Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder community editor Mel Reeves told Torey.

Back from break, Minnesota Legislature gears up for budget fight

Photo: Michael Siluk/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

The Minnesota Legislature returns from a holiday break today, setting off a six-week sprint to reach deals on a laundry list of issues.

The state of play: The biggest and most important item on the divided Legislature's to-do list is passing a two-year state budget.

Minneapolis police chief expected to testify against Derek Chauvin

Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo. Photo: Jerry Holt/Star Tribune via Getty Images

Minneapolis police chief Medaria Arradondo is expected to take the stand as soon as today, as testimony in the Derek Chauvin trial continues for a second week.

Why it matters: The city's top cop will tell jurors that Chauvin's "conduct was not consistent" with MPD training and policies, per special prosecutor Jerry Blackwell's opening statement.

Minnesota summer camps brace for huge demand after pandemic pause

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Overnight camps across Minnesota are preparing for a return of campers — and a surge in demand — one year after the pandemic cancelled summer plans for thousands of families.

Why it matters: Closures were devastating for the industry's financials, but directors say the bigger losses were for kids.

Community weighs in on the future of George Floyd Square

Photo: Tim Evans/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Residents and business owners in the neighborhood that surrounds 38th and Chicago are split on what should happen to the memorial marking George Floyd Square when the intersection reopens, results of a city survey show.

The details: Eight in 10 people who responded to the survey expressed support for one of the two design options presented.

  • The respondents were fairly evenly divided between keeping the fist sculpture erected in the street where it is and routing traffic around the art, or moving it to the northwest corner of the intersection.
  • Meanwhile, 16% of those surveyed opposed both proposals, indicating "a desire for justice before any design changes."
  • And 3% wanted the memorial fully removed.

What's next: The city plans to proceed with reopening the intersection once the trial is over, over objections of some activists who have been occupying the area.

University of Minnesota's out-of-state, international apps drop

Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

The Gophers' student recruitment took another hit amid the pandemic, with fall 2021 applications to the University of Minnesota's flagship campus dropping 5%.

Driving the trend: Data suggests students are looking to stay closer to home, Robert McMaster, the U's vice provost and dean of undergraduate education, told Torey.

Apr 1, 2021 - Axios Twin Cities

Derek Chauvin trial testimony puts Cup Foods back in the spotlight

A Cup Foods worker said store owners took counterfeit bills out of employees' paychecks. Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

The South Minneapolis corner store where George Floyd was accused of passing a fake $20 bill before his death was at the center of the Derek Chauvin trial Wednesday.

Driving the news: Former Cup Foods employee Christopher Martin testified that the independent grocer's policy was if an employee accepted a counterfeit bill, the cash came out of the worker's paycheck.

Apr 1, 2021 - Axios Twin Cities

Target and Walmart top Cub Foods as Twin Cities' top grocers

Data: Chain Store Guide; Chart: Axios Visuals

Cub Foods, long the Twin Cities' dominant grocer, now only ranks third in market share here, according to a recent report from Chain Store Guide, a sales-tracking firm that examined 2020 grocery revenue in the 15-county metro.

The state of play: Cub, with its 74 metro stores, fell behind Target and Walmart — which have fewer stores but higher volumes.

Mar 31, 2021 - Axios Twin Cities

Twins will keep Minneapolis cops at Target Field

Photo: Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

Eight months after announcing plans to re-evaluate their relationship with the Minneapolis Police Department, the Minnesota Twins intend to bring off-duty officers back to Target Field this summer.

What they're saying: "The Minnesota Twins remain supportive of Chief Arradondo and Mayor Frey, and, with a belief in their continued efforts to create meaningful change that advances racial justice and equity, we are continuing our relationship with the Minneapolis Police Department for the 2021 season," a spokesman told Torey.

The backdrop: The Twins, like many professional sports teams, contract with off-duty cops for game day security.

  • But after George Floyd was killed, the team said it would make a decision for 2021 "based on authentic progress toward significant reform ... and/or a community-embraced public safety model."

What's next: For the duration of the Derek Chauvin trial, the team will contract with the Anoka County Sheriff's Office for security help during home games. After the verdict, work with "individual off-duty Minneapolis police officers" will resume.

  • Of note: A Twins job listing for a police officer notes that candidates "must not be under current investigation for criminal or major policy infractions, or under suspension or on leave."

This story first appeared in the Axios Twin Cities newsletter, designed to help readers get smarter, faster on the most consequential news unfolding in their own backyard.