On Thursday morning, Jerry Bielke of Chaska filled up several plastic jugs at the Fredrick-Miller Spring in Eden Prairie. His brother uses the water i

Fondness for spring water overflows in Eden Prairie

None of those gathering water seemed perturbed by the city's sign warning that "even though the water is tested, we cannot assure its safety at all times."
Full Disclosure

Shiffer: State reports weed out medical pot growers' 'trade secrets'

December 6, 2014
State Health Commissioner Edward Ehlinger announced the selection of the two companies that will produce medical cannabis in Minnesota — LeafLine La
LeafLine Labs and Minnesota Medical Solutions proved to the state that they had the financial wherewithal, technical prowess and security procedures to process and sell medical cannabis to patients. But if you want to know the details, you're out of luck.
Full Disclosure

St. Paul artist may be out of options to save house

November 17, 2014
Arjo Adams climbs on a cabinet in his home to show how an attic access door is insulated, despite what a city code inspector found. The city of St. Pa
March 12
Mpls. Mayor Jacob Frey

Jobs center helps East African residents of Minneapolis find employment

The center surpassed its goal for job placements.
January 6
The Data Practices Act reflects Minnesota’s admirable belief that we’re all policy wonks at heart.

Minnesota open records law needs a name equal to its purpose

The Minnesota Government Data Practices Act needs a new title. Desperately.
December 23, 2017

UFOs and aliens thrive in the vacuum created by secrecy

Lack of government transparency plays a big role in propagating wild theories of alien landings and coverups.
December 16, 2017

Breeders and animal dealers granted privacy, even after inspectors find problems

Dan Moulton has raised chinchillas, those cute little Andean furballs, in southern Minnesota for more than 50 years. Moulton is licensed by the U.S.…
December 9, 2017

Star Tribune offers new ways to send us news tips

Your eyes and ears are especially important to us in an era of growing government secrecy.
December 2, 2017
A protest against sexual harassment was held last month at the Minnesota State Capitol. The Minnesota Legislature is one of only five in the nation th

Sexual harassment shielded by secrecy at Minnesota Capitol

The sexual harassment scandal has brought new attention to the different disclosure practices that apply to Minnesota institutions.
November 18, 2017

Minneapolis' posting of 'deleted' EPA pages is a bit overheated

One problem: The web pages in question are still on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's website. You can find them linked from the EPA home page.
November 4, 2017

Mille Lacs County sues feds to get FOIA response

And since November 2016, county officials have been waiting.
October 28, 2017
Part of a web page showing the page from the National Archives showing a listing of records released on Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017, in Washington, relati

Opening the JFK files would have been a triumph of transparency. If only.

Instead it confirmed to the cynics and conspiracy theorists that the government can never come clean.
October 28, 2017
President Donald Trump’s actions are bringing new energy and focus to transparency advocates, who are filing numerous lawsuits to preserve the statu

Trump White House confounds, confuses transparency advocates

Data purges and secrecy confounding transparency advocates.
October 14, 2017
University of Minnesota Board of Regents Chair Dean Johnson addressed reporters in May regarding the unofficial inquiry into a reported leak of confid

University of Minnesota's hunt for leaker was a $74K red herring

In May, the Board of Regents of the University of Minnesota learned that another high-ranking athletic department employee had been placed on leave for misconduct. This was supposed to stay secret.
October 9, 2017
Michael Weigel, 39, left, and William Eldridge, 27, right, both were sentenced under Minnesota's revenge porn statute.

Two men sentenced for violating Minnesota's revenge-porn law

Michael Weigel and William Eldridge both had the same idea on how to inflict emotional pain on women in their lives. They created fake Facebook…
October 1, 2017
In September, researchers and visitors to the Smithsonian Institution warehouse in Suitland, Md., posed with the ancient sandstone jar given as a gift

Once-secret CIA records reveal gift of ancient stone jar

Earlier this year, a researcher at Concordia University in St. Paul was combing through declassified CIA records and discovered an intriguing stone legacy of the…
September 25, 2017
A lion guards the doorway of Duluth City Hall

A trip to Duluth proves City Hall isn't sinking under data requests

So back in July, when the Duluth city staff presented the idea of charging $35 an hour for any data request that takes more than 15 minutes, I decided to ask: How big a burden are these?
September 13, 2017
In the midst of a motion to select interim superintendent Michael Goar as the board’s preferred candidate, protestors shut down the school board mee

The fuzzy line between dissent and disruption, even for courts

Anyone doubting the power of protest should study the shutdown of the Minneapolis Board of Education meeting on Jan. 12. The board was poised to…
September 11, 2017
Francesca DeLuca, age 20, will be waiting for 10 hours for her flight back to Milan, Italy. She had been visiting a friend in Miami by herself, but th

Hurricane Irma: When will airports reopen? What we know about damage

Hurricane Irma was downgraded to a tropical storm Monday as it made its way inland. Statewide, the storm knocked out power to more than 6.2…
September 9, 2017
Former Minneapolis Police Chief JaneÈ Harteau. According to state law, any agreement that prohibits discussion or disclosure of otherwise public pers

Former police chief's hush clause stymies a needed public debate

There's something so Minnesotan about the idea of nondisparagement.
East Metro
September 2, 2017

Search for father's birth parents runs into bureaucratic tangle

What's the public interest in hiding a court record created 108 years ago?
West Metro
August 23, 2017

Hotel room bust of high-end prostitute leads to $20,000 windfall for Minn. police

Adrienne Chapa was arrested and spent a few days in jail before she went home to Las Vegas. Her bag of $24,425 in cash was here to stay.
St. Paul
July 22, 2017
On Thursday, Charlie Rodgers, government records specialist at the Minnesota Historical Society, loaded 12 boxes of records handed over by the Hugo Ci

Archive specialist rescues Minnesota history, page by yellowed page

Charlie Rodgers’ business card carries his bone-dry title: “Government records specialist.” The reality is more like this: Exploring dank basements and forgotten storage areas; opening…