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Let That Poor Family Have Their Road Back!

Plus what the worker shortage means in Greater Minnesota and Walz won't declare a COVID emergency in today's Flyover.

Wolfgang Hasselmann

The Gravel Road Saga Continues...

Yet another development today in the story of one Minnesota family and the fight over the road to their home. Previously on Road Rules: Rural Minnesota, Hillman Township supervisors informed the Crisman family that their gravel access road no longer existed. That was August. In October, the Township upheld the ruling. Finally, last week, a judge called the board's actions "unreasonable," and ruled that the township had to recognize the road. And now? Star Tribune road dispute reporter John Reinan writes that the Hillman Township board is "still weighing legal options" in the case of the now-nonexistent road. The board debated for 45 minutes in an executive session Tuesday before reemerging with a bold "no comment." More Minnesota drama than The Bachelorette.

What the Worker Shortage Means for Greater MN

While we're on the topic of Greater Minnesota, Minnpost reports today that our fellow Minnesotans in more far-flung areas around the state are the ones getting hit hardest by the labor shortage. That's been tough for places like Red Wing, where tourism and manufacturing are both key to the economy and where job vacancies are at record highs. It's an interesting look at the many factors at play in this ongoing shortage, especially when we hear from researchers, who say they've been predicting a labor shortage in Greater Minnesota for decades. Taking aging communities with growing economies, then throw in a pandemic—suddenly those positions become tough to fill.

Nothing Political to See Here: Walz Won’t Declare COVID Emergency

Gov. Tim Walk took a break from his Finlandian trade mission Wednesday to say that he will not declare a COVID state of emergency in Minnesota. His reasoning, you see, has nothing to do with Republicans making his alleged abuse of previous emergency powers the pillar of their current platform. “If I believed I could declare a peacetime emergency and save a life by doing it,” Walz told reporters today, “I would certainly do that.” No, it’d be ridiculous to view this new stance as cynical political calculation, since it has absolutely everything, Walz says, to do with the impracticality of mask mandates, which he deemed important to fighting the virus… the last time things were this bad. In related news: Minnesota now has the worst rate of COVID infection in the country, Dr. Michael Osterholm told KARE 11 on Tuesday. 

Vroom, Vroom, South Metro!

At Racket, we’re big proponents of the wind whipping through your hair on the open road, radio blasting “Little Miss Can't Be Wrong.” So you can imagine our excitement when MnDOT nudged Crosstown speed limits from 55 to 60 miles per hour. "Based on our study results, the newly authorized 60 mph speed limit is reasonable and safe,” a spokesperson told Bring Me the News of the big news—which, to its credit, BMTN did bring to us—along Hwy-62. Planning a speed liberation joyride? The new measures are in effect from Clearwater Drive in Minnetonka out West, all the way though the Hwy-55 & Hiawatha Avenue in Minneapolis. Appetite for speed regulations not sufficiently whetted? Here’s a look at how MnDOT determines speed limits around the state.

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