What’s making news in Minneapolis, reported by the Star Tribune’s team of city reporters. Send news tips to suzanne.ziegler@startribune.com.

Friday roundup: Stadium divides council, more city grads college-bound, tale of a body on a bench

Posted by: James Eli Shiffer under Local business, People and neighborhoods, Politics and government, Public safety, Urban living Updated: January 20, 2012 - 10:01 AM

More graduates of city high schools are heading to college, and that's a stat Minneapolis Public Schools leaders will tout when Arne Duncan, the U.S. Secretary of Education, stops by South High School today, Steve Brandt reports. The percentage of college-enrolled grads jumped from 45 percent in 2005 to 58 percent in 2010, and school and civic leaders credit better career planning, scholarships and cheerleading from Mayor R.T. Rybak.

Rybak may be able to coax more kids into college, but can he persuade the City Council to spend big money on the Vikings? As the stadium momentum shifts to Minneapolis, it's becoming clear how the issue of public money towards professional sports divides the council. The mayor thinks he's got seven votes for a stadium deal, but several of the council members he'll need remain on the fence, Eric Roper and Mike Kaszuba report.

John Scherer was an accomplished academic and lived most of his life near Lake Nokomis, which is where he died alone on a park bench. The tale of this man's public but peaceful death is elegantly told by Matt McKinney.

Doris Ruiz, who owns a Minneapolis-based temp agency, once served on the mayor's Latino Advisory Committee - now she's facing time after pleading guilty in federal court to pocketing payroll taxes, Kaitlyn Walsh reports. Last year, James Walsh reported how Ruiz was still in business despite a federal investigation that began as early as 2006.

Public safety: The leader of a fearsomely-named Emerson Murder Boys gang could face 34 years in prison after a jury convicted him of killing a man in a north Minneapolis alley in 2009, Paul Walsh reports. 

To the sounds of The Little Thunders, Susan Allen was sworn in as the first female American Indian lawmaker in Minnesota. She is representing a House district based in south Minneapolis. See David Joles' photo gallery here.

 

 

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