GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. — MN Senate passes bill to reopen businesses
In what was a largely symbolic move the Minnesota Senate's Republican majority Monday pushed through a bill that would let all Minnesota businesses reopen in spite of any emergency orders from Gov. Tim Walz. Business owners would be expected to comply with CDC and Minnesota Dept. of Health guidelines on social distancing, masks and other infection control practices. Under the Senate legislation, those plans would not have to be reviewed by the government, and the state would be barred from stripping business and professional licenses from those businesses. The DFL-controlled House is not expected to pass a similar bill, but the debate once again allowed Republicans in the legislature to assert a position distinctly different from the governor's measured response.
One hundred thousand people flock to Lake Minnetonka each Fourth of July to celebrate Independence Day. Athletes participate in the Firecracker Run, kids join a parade, and everyone gathers to watch the fireworks at 10 p.m. sharp. Excelsior has hosted the party (in some form) since 1888. Excelsior-Lake Minnetonka Chamber of Commerce marketing and membership director Jen Weiss says generations come back year after year, some of them even flying in for the occasion. They’ll have to adjust their plans – if they weren’t planning to do so already. With COVID-19 cases still increasing in Minnesota, the Chamber of Commerce announced Monday it has canceled the 2020 Lake Minnetonka Fourth of July Celebration. The decision was made with safety in mind, first and foremost, but also because of the devastating economic conditions. The Chamber of Commerce has lost significant revenue from two previously canceled events this year, and it cannot count on the same level of sponsorship money from struggling local businesses in coming months.
Thousands of parents, students and school leaders have signed online petitions protesting Minnesota's new graduation guidelines. On Friday state leaders announced the guidelines that prohibit in-person gatherings, while encouraging virtual ceremonies that would allow people to stay at home. The guidelines further stipulated safety precautions that would be required if attempting a “car parade” or “parking lot ceremony.” But on Monday, one change.org petition started by Springfield High School senior Isaac Rasset already had more than 11,000 signatures. It's safe to say Rasset isn’t alone in his frustration or actions.