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 -- Minnesota's former adjutant general will be the next state veterans' affairs commissioner. Gov. Mark Dayton this morning announced that Larry Shellito will head the Veterans' Affairs Department. It is the latest of a series of Dayton Cabinet announcements. Shellito, who lives in Woodbury, stepped down as the state's National Guard leader last year after seven years. He is a former Alexandria Technical College president and a Minnesota State University Moorhead graduate. "While a U.S. senator and a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, I worked closely with Gen.
ST. PAUL -- A Minnesota House committee voted Tuesday to allow new nuclear power plants in the state, with another vote coming soon to remove a ban on new coal power plants and to allow North Dakota coal and electrical power. Rep. Denny McNamara, R-Hastings, promised to work with Gov. Mark Dayton on both issues.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton plans to bring together state officials to discuss security around the Capitol complex in light of Saturday's Arizona shooting of a congresswoman and those attending her public event. "This is a moment of great national solemnity," Dayton said before joining a nationwide moment of silence in memory of the six who died and those hurt in the shooting. Dayton said he has not changed his security, but wants to talk to legislative leaders, law enforcement officers and others about whether changes are needed to Capitol complex security.
ST. PAUL -- The new Minnesota Department of Natural Resources commissioner wants to make sure the agency does not appear arrogant. "I will not stand for arrogance," Tom Landwehr said Thursday, shortly after new Gov.
ST. PAUL -- A research biologist and environmentalist will head the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Gov. Mark Dayton named Tom Landwehr as commissioner of the massive department that does everything from regulating hunting to protecting the environment. Landwehr worked for the DNR in the 1980s and soon became the agency's wildlife manager and later its Wetland Wildlife Program leader. He has been director of the Minnesota and Iowa chapter of Ducks Unlimited and was No.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton diffused a tense situation at his first official function Wednesday by sharing his microphone with shouting protesters crowded into his office. Dozens of people opposed to the state getting more deeply involved in the federal Medicaid program jammed into the governor's reception room alongside legislators, reporters and photographers in a scene Capitol observers say they never have witnessed before.
If great challenges lead to great opportunities, as the old saying goes, state lawmakers have a whale of an opportunity this year. "There are fantastic opportunities out there," rookie Sen. John Carlson, R-Bemidji, said. He is one of 60 new legislators, mostly Republican, who took office Tuesday.
ST. PAUL -- It was smiles and bigger smiles today as Minnesota's 201 legislators took their oaths of office, hiding the overriding fact of the new legislative session featuring the most drastic change in state leadership in decades as Republicans took control of the House and Senate for the first time in 40 years. That comes a day after Mark Dayton became the first Minnesota Democrat to move into the governor's office in 20 years. As legislators launched their 2011 session at noon today, they welcomed 36 new House members and 24 freshmen senators.