COVID levels continue to decline in Twin Cities wastewater


At MPR, Craig Helmstetter reports, “COVID-19 levels are on the decline in Twin Cities wastewater, according to the latest surveillance reports. The Metropolitan Council and University of Minnesota’s Genomic Center continue to combine forces in monitoring Twin Cities wastewater for changes in prevalence of COVID-19. Friday’s welcome news from the Council: ‘The viral RNA load in Metro Plant influent decreased by 16% last week compared to the previous week.’”

A WCCO-TV story says, “Minneapolis police are investigating the city’s 41st homicide of the year after a man was found dead inside an apartment south of downtown Sunday morning. Firefighters were first called to the building on the 1700 block of 3rd Avenue South just before 9 a.m., but they arrived to find no sign of fire. Instead, crews found a deceased man inside an apartment ‘believed to be in his 60s’ with non-thermal injuries. Police were called, and officers soon arrested a 55-year-old man at the scene.”

WCCO-TV reports: “Tuesday will be a Next Weather Alert day due to dangerous heat. The high, forecasted for 97 in the metro, may break a record for the daily high temp — with the heat index rising into the triple digits.”

In the Star Tribune, Jessie Van Berkel writes: “Minnesota’s highest-paid state government workers are not college presidents, investment officials, Supreme Court justices or the governor. The top earners of state taxpayer dollars are — by an overwhelming margin — psychiatrists. … Fourteen of the 20 state workers who earned the most money in 2021 were psychiatrists. A decade earlier, five of the 20 top-paid staff worked in mental and behavioral health centers.”

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Also from WCCO-TV, this from Ren Clayton: “Most Minnesotans can agree that mosquitoes aren’t welcome, especially this time of year. But wet and warm weather means the state’s biggest summer pest is making its comeback. … Alex Carlson, public affairs manager with the Metropolitan Mosquito Control District, says calls have started to spike at the main office in St. Paul ‘[Mosquitoes are] very dependent on standing water for most of their life cycle, so they lay their eggs actually either in or right on the edges of an area like this,” Carlson said, gesturing to water runoff area at Harriet Island Park in St. Paul. “This is designed to flood up after it rains.’”

Another WCCO story, this by Marielle Mohs, says, “Minnesota’s average is up to $4.72 a gallon Thursday. The national average keeps cruising closer to $5. One gas station in St. Anthony seemed to sum things up nicely with this sign below his high prices reading, ‘We Hate Our Gas Prices Too.’”

Stephen Groves writes for the AP: “Ahead of a potential presidential bid, South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem handily won the Republican nomination last week for a second term. Many of the candidates she hoped to elect to the Statehouse, however, did not have such a good night. She had hoped to replace contrarians with personal allies in the Republican-controlled Legislature, which has consistently defied her wishes, so the governor rallied behind roughly a dozen candidates who challenged incumbents. Two-thirds of Noem’s favorites lost. The setback was a reminder that while endorsements often draw attention and financial resources, they do not always translate into support from voters.’

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