- 6/18/13; West Hancock vs. Corwith Wesley Luverne Baseball will play varsity first at 5:45 p.m. No JV. :
PENSION SHORTFALL State pension funds underfunded by over $16B ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Public pension plans for Minnesota government employees are underfunded by more than $16 billion – a deficit that’s $4 billion larger than it was when lawmakers tried to shore up the problem in 2010. Experts say the underfunded pension is not reason for alarm, but it’s a problem that 11 of the state’s 12 public pension plans open to new members don’t have enough money coming in to pay out promised benefits. Plans for state troopers, public safety workers, and local police and firefighters are among those with the largest gap. Lawmakers will consider changes to those plans this year. The plans pay for retirement for more than 729,000 current and retired state and local government workers. The Legislative Commission on Pensions and Retirement released the numbers last month.
WIND CHILL WARNING Spirit Mountain closes early due to wind chills DULUTH, Minn. (AP) – The National Weather Service has issued a wind chill warning for northern Minnesota. Forecasters say wind chills may drop to as low as 50 degrees below zero across the region. The Duluth News Tribune reports the warning starts at midnight Sunday and runs through noon Monday. Then, a less-severe wind chill advisory goes into effect, as wind chills on Monday could get as low as 30 below zero. The St. Paul Pioneer Press reports that Duluth’s Spirit Mountain is closing early due to the extreme cold. The ski and adventure park closed at 6 p.m. Sunday, and will close at 5 p.m. on Monday.
FATAL FIRE-EAGAN 1 dead, 2 taken to hospital after Eagan fire EAGAN, Minn. (AP) – One person is dead after a fire in a four-unit townhouse in Eagan, and two men who jumped from the second story were taken to the hospital to be evaluated. Police say the fire happened Sunday morning. Fire officials and police arrived to find the townhouse engulfed in flames, and two men on the ground outside. The men said they awoke to smoke in their unit, and jumped out of a second story window. They also said they believed another man was trapped inside. Firefighters found a person inside, who was already dead. The other units of the townhouse were evacuated. There were no other injuries. The cause of the fire is being investigated.
PHOTOGRAPHY STORE-HOMICIDES May trial set for Minn. man in double homicide MADISON, Wis. (AP) – A Minnesota man accused of killing a La Crosse, Wisconsin photography store owner and his son is set to stand trial in May. Investigators say Jeffrey Lepsch of Dakota, Minnesota killed Paul Petras and Petras’ son, A.J., at May’s Photo in downtown La Crosse last September. They say they recovered multiple items from the store at Lepsch’s house during an October search. Lepsch faces two counts of first-degree intentional homicide, one count of armed robbery and one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm. He has denied involvement in the deaths. La Crosse County Circuit Judge Ramona Gonzalez has scheduled jury selection for May 3rd. The trial is scheduled to begin on May 6th.
FLU-MINNESOTA University suspends attendance policy due to flu (Information in the following story is from: The Minnesota Daily, http://www.mndaily.com/) MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – As students return from winter break this week, officials at the University of Minnesota say those who are experiencing flu symptoms should stay home. Due to a high number of flu cases, officials have suspended an attendance policy that requires a doctor’s note if a student is absent on the first day. The Minnesota Daily reports officials told students by email that those who miss the first day won’t have to show a note, but must email instructors so they don’t get dropped from class. Officials say students should stay home until they are free of flu symptoms for at least 24 hours. The policy was also suspended in 2009 after the H1N1 outbreak. The most recent figures show there have been 60 flu-related deaths in Minnesota this season.
ABORTION-ROE’S LEGACY-NORTH DAKOTA ND’s only abortion clinic takes spotlight (Information in the following story is from: The Forum, http://www.in-forum.com) FARGO, N.D. (AP) – There’s only one clinic in North Dakota where women can go to get an abortion. It’s the Red River Women’s Clinic in Fargo, near Moorhead, Minnesota. The clinic offers surgical and medical abortions and terminates more than 1,200 pregnancies a year. Procedures are performed on Wednesdays. And every Wednesday the clinic draws a small crowd of people praying or holding signs, intermixed with others who quietly usher women into the front entrance. Jane Bovard is part-owner of the clinic. She tells The Forum newspaper the clinic has been the target of break-ins, contentious protests and fire bombings. Martin Wishnatsky was one of the protesters. The now 68-year-old says he and others were willing to be arrested for “peaceful intervention between the child scheduled for execution and the doctor assigned to do it.”