Staff Directory 261800211

Emma Nelson

Reporter | Minneapolis
Phone: 612-673-4509
Location: St. Paul City Hall
Other languages: Spanish
St. Paul reporter Emma Nelson joined the Star Tribune in 2014, and has covered local government beats from Scott and Dakota counties to Minneapolis City Hall. She has also been part of reporting teams that covered the aftermath of the Norwood Teague sexual harassment scandal and the death of Prince.

A St. Paul native, Nelson graduated from the University of Minnesota with a degree in journalism. She plays violin and acoustic guitar, and in college recorded an album that no-one is allowed to listen to. She lives in the Corcoran neighborhood of Minneapolis.
Recent content from Emma Nelson
Jessica Kingston

Former St. Paul human rights director accused police of sabotaging oversight

St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter joins Police Chief Todd Axtell in denying Jessica Kingston's allegations.
St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter, shown at his State of the City address.

St. Paul Mayor Carter proposes $15 minimum wage, including for tipped workers

The ordinance, which would cover all full-time workers, would be phased in over five to nine years.
The year-end party for Urban Flower Field at Pedro Park in St. Paul in 2016.

St. Paul moves forward with office development, downtown park

Ackerberg Group to help fund St. Paul park, develop building next door.
Travis Temke plans to transform this Fire Station No. 10, into a taproom and coffee shop in St. Paul.

Firehouse buyer in St. Paul defaulted on loan for Faribault brewery

He's now in line for St. Paul loan to buy old firehouse.
Travis Temke plans to transform Fire Station No. 10, which dates from 1885, into a taproom and coffee shop in St. Paul.

Taproom looks to resuscitate historic St. Paul firehouse

W. 7th area of St. Paul seeing development surge.
Rep. John Lesch in a 2015 file photo.

Judge denies Rep. John Lesch's motion to dismiss defamation suit

Judge Frank Magill said Lesch's arguments for dismissing St. Paul City Attorney Lyndsey Olson's case against him weren't sufficient.
St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter

St. Paul City Council sets maximum tax levy hike at 11.5% but says it will be lower

Mayor Melvin Carter asked for the jump in the property tax levy in his first budget.
A photo taken inside Double Dragon Foods by city of St. Paul inspectors on Sept. 18.

Owner appeals after St. Paul closes Double Dragon Foods, condemns building after inspection

St. Paul inspectors found unsafe and unsanitary conditions.
Mayor Melvin Carter watched as Gloria Massey practiced new skills at the Rec Tech Lab at Hallie Q. Brown.

St. Paul opens computer labs at recreation centers

The six "Rec Tech Labs" will offer computer skills classes and certifications.
As in Minneapolis last year, tipped workers in St. Paul — servers, bartenders, baristas — are at odds over whether their tips should count toward

Tipped workers at odds over St. Paul's minimum wage

Rallies in St. Paul drew supporters, opponents of counting tips as wages.
Mayor Melvin Carter announced in a June 27 Facebook post that the city would not put on a July 4 fireworks show.

Carter declined last-minute offers to fund St. Paul fireworks

Mayor Melvin Carter's office declined multiple offers to help pull together a July 4 fireworks display in St. Paul after he announced in late June that the annual event would not happen.
Rick Mickschl, left, and Isaac Stensland inspected work done on an addition at Humboldt High School last week in St. Paul.

As construction booms, St. Paul has backlog of 59K permits

A backlog of nearly 59,000 permits hangs over city's building safety examiners.
Student walk on campus at Macalester College.

St. Paul private colleges fret over $15 minimum wage for work-study students

Private colleges and universities may have to raise tuition to pay students higher wages.
Supporters of the $15 minimum wage for St. Paul rallied in front of Walmart in the Midway area of St. Paul in November.

Citizens League report recommends St. Paul adopt a $15 minimum wage

Support appears strong, but route to setting pay level remains unsettled.
City Clerk Shari Moore swore in Mitra Jalali Nelson in front of her mother, Sooki Jalali, and her campaign manager Garrison McMurtrey.

Mitra Jalali Nelson sworn in as St. Paul City Council member

The 32-year-old will represent the city's Fourth Ward.
In 2016, a year-end party was held for Urban Flower Field at Pedro Park in St. Paul.

Friends of Pedro Park sue St. Paul

A parcel that was to be made into a park was sold.
Under an agreement with the city, 15 trash haulers will each take a portion of St. Paul based on their market share.

Ramsey County judge will hear motion to dismiss St. Paul trash lawsuit

City attorney argued that a citizen misinterpreted Minnesota law in the suit.
A crew from the St. Paul parks and recreation department removed ash trees along Juno Avenue earlier this month in St. Paul.

St. Paul mayor wants to more than double spending to fight emerald ash borer

Even with a funding boost, the Parks Department will likely continue to fall behind on removing ash trees.
St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter

St. Paul eyes taxes, cuts to fill 2019 budget gap

Mayor's new budget calls for 11.5% tax levy increase.
Mitra Nelson has won the Ward 4 race for the St. Paul City Council.

Mitra Jalali Nelson wins St. Paul City Council seat

The 32-year-old is expected to take office in September.
With Lime in St. Paul, riders can pick up and drop off the bikes anywhere, with the use of a smartphone app.

Dockless bikes arrive in St. Paul

There will be 800 bikes for pickup and dropoff anywhere.
St. Paul City Council Member Dai Thao and his attorney Joe Dixon say that Thao didn’t knowingly break the law when he helped a Hmong woman vote in N

Judge hears pre-trial arguments in Dai Thao voting case

Both sides agree council member helped woman vote, but dispute his intent.
Minnesota state Rep. Ilhan Omar, left, and Rashida Tlaib, a congressional candidate in Detroit.

Former Project Veritas staffer crashes Ilhan Omar campaign event in Minneapolis

A campaign event for state Rep. Ilhan Omar was disrupted Saturday night when Laura Loomer, a conservative media personality with a history of attacking Muslims…
Ed Smith

Ed Smith, would-be loner and World War II veteran, dies at 92

Those who knew him describe a man whose life was colored by tragedy from the beginning, but punctuated until the end by moments of grace.
Candidate David Martinez surrounded himself with notes before a St. Paul Ward 4 debate last month began. Beside him are fellow candidates Shirley Erst

Tumultuous St. Paul City Council race reaches the finish line

Both Shirley Erstad and Mitra Nelson have garnered strong support.
St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter proposed a $606 million city budget for 2019 and an 11.5 percent property tax levy increase.

St. Paul mayor proposes 2019 budget with more money for housing, parks, police investigations

Melvin Carter's first budget includes an 11.5% property tax levy increase.
David Martinez

St. Paul City Council candidate David Martinez arrested over violating protection order

David Martinez, 38, allegedly visited his children's school.
FILE -- A scooter on the sidewalk in downtown San Francisco, April 16, 2018. Doctors and public health workers in San Francisco are preparing to track

A second fleet of electric scooters lands in St. Paul

About a month after Bird arrived without warning, Lime has placed 150 scooters around the city.
Two people walked by as a crew removed ash trees along Juno Avenue last week in St. Paul. “This is really devastating for us,” one resident said.

As emerald ash borer spreads, cities can't plant trees fast enough

St. Paul and Minneapolis have lost tens of thousands of ash trees, and the urban canopy won't be restored for decades.
Candidate David Martinez surrounded himself with notes before the St. Paul Ward 4 debate began Monday. Beside him are fellow candidates Shirley Erstad

St. Paul Fourth Ward forum stays on track after tumultuous few weeks

After a bumpy July and a canceled appearance, the St. Paul candidates tackled issues facing city.
Nelsie Yang, right, and Dan Bostrom

St. Paul City Council campaign begins more than a year before Election Day

The 2019 race for St. Paul City Council got an early start Monday when a community organizer announced her candidacy for the East Side seat held by the council's longest-serving member.
Sean Sherman, the 2018 James Beard award-winning Sioux Chef, showed Tajah Tempest, center, and Saba Andualem how to roll up meatballs at Urban Roots i

From garden to table, Urban Roots teaches teens to grow, cook and love their food

Teen interns in St. Paul learn skills from local chefs that will help them after school – and beyond.
Three Bird scooters at 9th and Hennepin in downtown Minneapolis.

St. Paul orders scooters removed from sidewalks until rules adopted next month

A pilot program starting in August will give scooter vendors temporary licenses to operate in the city.
St. Paul City Council President Amy Brendmoen said all council members see housing as a priority.

St. Paul considers a slew of housing policies — including more fourplexes

City Council to explore viability of multiunit buildings amid single-family homes.
David Martinez

St. Paul City Council candidate Martinez released from jail

Martinez has said he will not drop out of the race for St. Paul's 4th Ward seat.
David Martinez

St. Paul candidate forum canceled after jailed candidate says he'll stay in race

The Wednesday evening forum would have included all three candidates for the Fourth Ward seat.
David Martinez

Candidate's behavior, arrest shake up quiet St. Paul City Council race

He denies posting seminude photo of his wife on his website.
St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter, shown at Johnson High School after giving his first State of the City address.

St. Paul City Hall grapples with hiring — and keeping — women and people of color

Data reveal persistent challenges in closing race and gender gaps.
Sophie Konewko and Megan Albers took two Bird scooters for a ride through downtown Minneapolis.

St. Paul in standoff with company over electric scooters

Bird Rides Inc. dropped the scooters into the Twin Cities without official permission this week, and Minneapolis and St. Paul scrambled to react. St. Paul wants them gone until they can figure out how to regulate them.
David Martinez

St. Paul City Council candidate banned from Target Field for a year

David Martinez, 38, was detained at the stadium after swearing and lunging at a security guard. Teenage hands holding cigarette outdoor.

St. Paul condos voted to go smoke-free; then smokers got on the board

The aftermath of the scuttled smoking ban has pitted neighbor against neighbor at Gallery Tower.

St. Paul offers $500,000 in loans to businesses in poor neighborhoods

The goal is to create jobs.
Inside the George Latimer Central Library overlooking Rice Park and The Landmark Center in downtown St. Paul.

St. Paul City Council candidate banned from libraries for a month after arrest

David Martinez was arrested and cited for disorderly conduct at George Latimer Central Library.

Airbnb launches effort to help St. Paul hosts get licensed

The city and company have teamed to educate hosts about rental regulations.
Rep. John Lesch

Attorney for Rep. John Lesch makes the case for dismissing defamation suit

St. Paul city attorney says legislator attacked her credentials, reputation.
Fallen chunk of concrete forced the closure of the RiverCentre parking ramp.

St. Paul's RiverCentre parking ramp is reopening — slowly

The top level of the downtown St. Paul ramp reopened Thursday.
Protestors for Nationwide Fight for $15 Day of Disruption at a Minneapolis McDonald's. A Minneapolis City Council ordinance kicks in this month that p

St. Paul expected to join Minneapolis with $15 minimum wage

City is expected to follow the lead of Minneapolis, others around country.
Fireworks display over downtown St. Paul in 2008, when they were part of the Taste of Minnesota festival.

St. Paul Mayor Carter snuffs out July 4 fireworks

"The fact of the matter is that we just don't have $100,000 to spend blowing up rockets over our city," he said.
In an interview, St. Mayor Melvin Carter said he’s considering the police chief’s request for 50 new officers alongside other city needs as he cra

St. Paul mayor skeptical about hiring 50 new police officers but not ruling it out

In an interview, Melvin Carter said he's considering the request alongside other city needs as he crafts a budget.
Minneapolis-based Ryan Cos. announced Monday that it will develop the site of the former Ford assembly plant in St. Paul.

Ryan Cos. to develop massive former Ford site in St. Paul

The Minneapolis-based company announced Monday that it will work with the city of St Paul on a development plan. It's the latest step toward transforming the 122-acre parcel in the Highland Park neighborhood into a high-density urban village.
The March to Protect Children and Families Wednesday made its way down E. 7th Street in St. Paul toward City Hall.

Despite Trump's reversal, Minn. activists say fight over immigration policies isn't over

The battle of over separating immigrant children from their parents may be over but Minnesota activists and others say the bigger fight over proposed immigration reforms and policies is still on.
Mitra Jalali Nelson

In St. Paul City Council race, Mitra Jalali Nelson attracts donors from outside the city

DFL aide to U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison leads fundraising.
St. Paul leaders think the city doesn’t need any more businesses selling cigarettes and other tobacco products.

St. Paul wants a cap on businesses allowed to sell cigarettes

Proposal is part of effort to reduce tobacco sales.
A man parking his car outside of his home.

St. Paul seeks to simplify hodgepodge of parking rules

A proposed ordinance would apply single set of rules wherever residential parking permits are required.

St. Paul City Council approves U visa ordinance to help immigrant crime victims

The law is intended to support immigrants who have been the victims of crimes.
“We don’t want another ghost bike,” said Tom Basgen, one of the St. Paul residents who’s organizing for safer bike lanes on Summit Avenue. Bas

Fight is on for safer biking on Summit Avenue

Riders, neighbors especially want to improve the busy intersection with Snelling.
St. Paul City Council Member Dai Thao, left, walked with his attorney Joe Dixon, right, from the Ramsey County Law Enforcement Center following his he

Attorney for St. Paul Council Member Dai Thao asks for case to be dismissed

Dai Thao did not knowingly break the law, and the case against him violates federal law, his attorney said.
Shirley Erstad, left, and Mitra Nelson.

St. Paul Fourth Ward City Council race reflects a changing DFL

Shirley Erstad and Mitra Nelson are front-runners for the seat, which is open for the first time in 10 years.
The St. Paul skyline, seen from the downtown airport. St. Paul leaders are asking building owners to cut back energy use this summer.

St. Paul asks building owners to cut energy use this summer

The city is working with building owners to track and reduce energy use.
Traffic was diverted off Highway 13 at Sylvandale Road in Lilydale after a mudslide closed both directions of the highway on Thursday, May 31, 2018.

Hwy. 13 in Lilydale reopens after mudslide

A faulty irrigation system on a private property was blamed for the slide.
April 5, 1977 Sister Rosanne Fox --The voice of the inner city comes through loud and clear to Sister Rosanne Fox, pastoral worker for St. Olaf Cathol

Rosanne Fox, sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet, dies at 93

The people who came to the church door knew to ask for Sister Rosanne. Over the 34 years she worked at St. Olaf Catholic Church…

Advocates for downtown St. Paul park threaten legal action

The Friends of Pedro Park Expansion say St. Paul went back on a deal.

Public can weigh in on St. Paul minimum wage this summer

With the debate over a citywide minimum wage in St. Paul underway, members of the public will have multiple opportunities to share their thoughts over…
Last year, St. Paul and Minneapolis neighbors examined models of the Riverview Corridor, from downtown St. Paul to the Minneapolis-St. Paul Internatio

St. Paul leaders feel left out of transit expansion

Transit advocates say it's no accident that St. Paul has fallen behind, citing choices made.
Trash haulers wind their way through an alley in the Mac-Groveland neighborhood of St. Paul.

St. Paul man sues city over organized trash collection

The lawsuit says the system's pricing policy violates state law.

St. Paul considers charging fees for changes to historic properties

City might charge up to $500 for major changes such as demolition.
St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter’s State of the City address was followed by breakout sessions with community members Saturday.

Mayor Melvin Carter's 'State of Our City' urges St. Paulites to get involved

Flipping the traditional State of the City address, he hears from residents.
Fallen chunk of concrete forced the closure of the RiverCentre parking ramp.

Funding push continues for deteriorating St. Paul parking ramp

Cost is the stopping point on RiverCentre repairs.
Fallen chunk of concrete forced the closure of the RiverCentre parking ramp.

Falling concrete chunk closes RiverCentre parking ramp

The closure comes as city officials are pushing for $58 million in state money to rebuild the ramp.
Rice Park was dedicated as Saint Paul’s first public space when it was given to the city in 1849. Today the park will undergo major renovation. Mayo

Rice Park construction kicks off in downtown St. Paul

St. Paul leaders break ground on $2.42 million downtown makeover project that is expected to have the park closed until October.

St. Paul wants $58 million from state to replace RiverCentre ramp

House did not include the request in bonding bill.
Gloria Velazquez was able to the stay in the United States legally after she received a U visa, for victims of serious crimes who cooperate with polic

St. Paul may speed visa application process for crime victims

Ordinance would speed up entry applications for those in U.S. illegally – if they cooperate with police.
Chris Coleman in St. Paul on December 14, 2017. JERRY HOLT ï

Ex-Mayor Chris Coleman to lead Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity

The former St. Paul mayor will replace Susan Haigh as president and CEO starting June 2.
The spot on Wabasha Street that is closed shown days after the landslide.

St. Paul, Ramsey County declare state of emergency after Wabasha Street rock slide

The declaration will allow the release of state disaster funds if needed.
St. Paul mayoral candidate Melvin Carter held 6 -month -old twin sister Zonea Vreeland left and Zaria Vreeland while campaigning with supporters in th

Task force will take on Carter's college savings account pledge

A 30-member panel will flesh out proposal to start fund for St. Paul kids.
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