What’s making news in St. Paul, reported by the Star Tribune’s team of city reporters. Send news tips to richard.meryhew@startribune.com.

Posts about People and neighborhoods

Mid-January thaw to bring out the plows

Posted by: Kevin Duchschere Updated: January 14, 2015 - 12:36 PM

With warmer weather in the forecast Thursday and Friday, St. Paul is planning to pull out the plows to do some touching up of residential streets.

City officials are asking residents to move their vehicles off north-south residential streets on Thursday, and off east-west residential streets on Friday, to make it easier for plows to get through.

The city won’t ticket or tow vehicles that aren’t moved. But officials hope for a high degree of voluntary compliance to ensure that streets can be cleared of snow as much as possible.

Crews plan to plow from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on each of those days.

The high temperature forecast for St. Paul on Thursday is 35 degrees; on Friday, temps are expected to rise to 31 degrees.

Hot music for cold nights at Latimer Central Library

Posted by: James Walsh Updated: January 12, 2015 - 10:40 AM

Yes, it is supposed to warm up considerably by the end of the week. But folks at the George Latimer Central Library in downtown St. Paul want to crank it up a few degrees warmer still.

Hot Music for Cold Nights, a free series to chase the winter blues away with music and dance from warmer climates, hits the downtown library on Sunday, Jan. 18, with a performance by the Tropics Steel Drum Band. The 2 p.m. show will be in the Magazine Room.

Steel drum style comes from Trinidad and Tobago. Steel bands play on instruments that began as oil drums -- refined over the last 60 years.

The Tropics Steel band draws from Caribbean styles such as Calypso, Reggae, SKA, Soca, pop and others. The leader is Jahbee, a former player with Shangoya, a popular Twin Cities Reggae group.

For more information on this and other Hot Nights performances, go to: http://www.sppl.org/hotmusic

Six-year-old girl dies from possible drowning in Highland Park

Posted by: Kevin Duchschere Updated: December 23, 2014 - 12:52 PM

A 6-year-old girl died Tuesday morning at Children's Hospital in St. Paul in an apparent drowning at a Highland Park apartment building, officials said Tuesday.

The building is located in the 1300 block of E. Maynard Drive, near W. 7th Street.

The girl's mother was later taken into custody and no one else is being sought.

Investigators have preliminary information on the victim’s identity and are working with the Ramsey County Medical Examiner’s Office for confirmation. The medical examiner is also working to determine the cause and manner of death.

 

 

 

St. Paul submits its legislative wish list for 2015

Posted by: Kevin Duchschere Updated: December 17, 2014 - 2:04 PM

The St. Paul City Council on Wednesday will sign off on the city’s legislative wish list for 2015, a series of funding requests, projects and statutory changes that council members and Mayor Chris Coleman are making a priority in the New Year.

At the top of the list: restoration of local government aid to 2003 levels, more state funding for transportation infrastructure and transit, and five top capital projects for which the city will seek state bonding (although 2015 isn’t necessarily a bonding year at the State Capitol).

Those projects and the amount requested, in order of priority, are reconstruction of the Kellogg Boulevard-3rd Street bridge ($40 million); an environmental learning center at Crosby Farm Regional Park ($19.5 million); renovation of the Como Zoo’s seals and sea lions exhibit ($14.5 million); a regional public safety facility and indoor firing range ($6.5 million); and a cultural center at the Bruce Vento Nature Sanctuary ($3 million).

Coleman said Wednesday that the city also hopes to get authorization for multiple tax-increment financing districts to aid development at the Ford site in Highland Park.

The legislative agenda includes a number of issues on which the city wishes to express its views. For instance, St. Paul opposes state-sanctioned tax levy limits, wants construction materials exempted from sales taxes, and supports more funding to help communities slow the progress of the emerald ash borer.

The city’s lobbying efforts are led by J.D. Burton, who has been St. Paul’s government relations director for a couple years.

“It’s a fairly wide-ranging package of things that we’ll be presenting to the Legislature,” Coleman said. “It’s consistent with what most cities and communities across the state are going to be asking.”

Cops, firefighters to help with holiday meals

Posted by: James Walsh Updated: December 12, 2014 - 12:19 PM

St. Paul police officers and firefighters are stepping up to help dozens of families have a good holiday meal -- by going grocery shopping with kids.

Through the Heroes and Helpers partnership, more than 48 St. Paul children will be joined by police officers and firefighters from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 13,
 
The kids, from St. Paul’s East Side, will be paired with St. Paul firefighters and police officers as they go down the grocery aisles of the Target at 1744 Suburban Ave., filling baskets with food.

This is the third year for Heroes and Helpers, which builds on the St. Paul Police Department’s annual Shop with Cops event. Both programs are designed to strengthen the bond between St. Paul’s emergency responders and the families they serve.

The District 2 Community Council, the St. Paul Police and Fire Departments, St. Paul Public Schools (Hazel Park Academy) and Target are partners in the program.

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