Staff Directory 11216508

Christopher Magan

Reporter | Hennepin County
Phone: 612-673-4678

Christopher Magan covers Hennepin County. .

Christopher Magan covers Hennepin County. Previously, he reported on public schools, social services and taxes at the state Capitol.
Recent content from Christopher Magan
Hennepin County Sheriff Dave Hutchinson said the program fills gaps in police departments with social workers.

Ex-Hennepin sheriff paid for drunk-driving damages with workers' comp

The Hennepin County Board approved a $240,000 settlement with former Sheriff Dave Hutchinson.
The Hennepin County Board listens to residents during an October 2023 meeting.

Should Hennepin County consider the race and gender of contractors it hires?

Disparity study will examine if extra measures are still needed to level the playing field for businesses owned by women and people of color.
Hennepin County Sheriff Dave Hutchinson, pictured in 2019.

Deputies accuse former Hennepin County sheriff of workplace filled with bigotry

A lawsuit filed by seven plaintiffs, including current Sheriff Dawanna Witt, alleges Hennepin County leaders didn't do enough to address demeaning and volatile behavior.
Fans gather outside of Target Field as they wait for the gates to open for the Twins home opener against the Cleveland Guardians Thursday, April 4, 20

Push to convert stadium tax to pay for hospital improvements advances with bipartisan backing

Senate supports the change, but the bill has yet to have a hearing in the House
Sara Franck, president of AFSCME 2474, speaks during a press conference at Hennepin County Government Center in Minneapolis on Tuesday. Nurses with th

Nurses want Hennepin County to take back control of HCMC

The demand comes after months of criticism of Hennepin Healthcare System leaders and HCMC working conditions by staff.
Electrician Bill Barnes makes repairs in a concourse at Target Field. “Year after year, we try to get more energy efficient,” said Dave Horsman, T

Grow lights and 1,000 kegs. Target Field gets ready for home opener

For weeks, dozens of workers have at the ballpark doing all the necessary to get ready for Thursday's Twins home opener. Here are some of the challenges they face.
Three injured in head-on crash near Taylors Falls

Three injured in head-on crash near Taylors Falls

Two were taken by medical helicopter to Regions Hospital in St. Paul, and one went to a hospital in St. Croix Falls.
David Haeg and his 9-year-old son Winston take the organics bin to the curb for pickup in Minnetonka last Monday. Haeg is one of a number of Hennepin

Why all Hennepin County residents' trash bills went up

State law says trash haulers cannot charge customers who recycle more, so everyone ends up paying.
The Hennepin County Public Safety Facility in downtown Minneapolis, pictured in 2017.

Hennepin County approves $16 million for updates to Public Safety Facility, Sheriff's Office

The planned upgrades to the facilities include elevator repairs and installations, a new roof, plumbing fixes and a new fence around the Public Safety Facility.
County Administrator David Hough presents the 2019 budget the Hennepin County Board Tuesday.

Hennepin County Board approves 20% pay raise for the county administrator

Administrator David Hough's contract expired at the end of 2023, his raise makes him the county's top paid employee.
People pass beneath the American flag Tuesday, March 5, 2024 at the Hennepin County Government Center in Minneapolis. The parking garage that serves t

Downtown Minneapolis parking alert: Hennepin County Government Center garage to close for months

Facility will be closed starting in May for work to fix drainage and structural issues.
Hennepin County to computerize absentee ballot distribution

Hennepin County to computerize absentee ballot distribution

Five-year, $1.6 million contract with BlueCrest approved by County Board for ballot software system.
The Minnesota Twins practice in an empty Target Field for the first time since Spring Training Friday.

Hennepin leaders want ballpark tax to fund health care improvements

The 0.15% sales tax that helped pay for Target Field would otherwise sunset after construction debt is repaid.
Kya Concepcion, left, and JayCee Cooper, both of Minneapolis, share a moment together during a Transgender Day of Visibility rally at the Capitol in S

Transgender weightlifter's bias case heads back to Minnesota court

Trial should determine if barring JayCee Cooper from competition was discriminatory, Appeals Court rules.
A pharmacist at the McGregor Pharmacy, which was then a Thrifty White, declined to fill a contraception prescription.

Refusing emergency contraception is sex discrimination, Minnesota appeals court rules

Aitkin County woman sued after pharmacist refused to fill her prescription because of his personal beliefs.
Star Tribune Editoral Page Editor Scott Gillespie, pictured in 2013.

Scott Gillespie, the Star Tribune's editorial page editor, announces upcoming retirement

Gillespie, who joined the Star Tribune in 1991, has led the editorial and opinion pages since 2007 and previously held leadership roles in the newsroom.
The Hennepin County Board listens to residents during an October 2023 meeting.

Six candidates, all from Edina, file for open Hennepin County Board seat

A special primary will be needed to narrow the field for the May 14 special election.
Yaneth Quintero Cruz, a program specialist at the Hennepin County Assessor's office, works from her cubical at the Hennepin County Government Center o

How Hennepin County leaders removed barriers and built a more diverse workforce

Pathways workforce training program has helped 400 workers get county jobs over the last decade
An ash tree bears the scars of an emerald ash borer. But not all distressed trees show symptoms on the surface.

Ash tree removal is expensive. Hennepin County, Minneapolis have $18 million to help low-income homeowners

Federal grants will help replace trees infested by the emerald ash borer and improve the tree canopy.
The Hennepin County Government Center.

Hennepin County leaders plan crime prevention summit in May

Three-day event would bring together leaders from county's 45 cities to find new solutions.
Solar panels on the roof of the Rockford Road Library in Crystal will begin providing electricity to the building later this year. Hennepin County has

Hennepin County workhouse will get solar panels as county expands renewable energy installations

Governments across the metro have ambitious clean energy projects as they try to reduce their carbon footprints.

Reducing juvenile crime in Minnesota will take more counselors, treatment options, panel tells lawmakers

The Legislative Working Group on Youth Interventions, made up of local leaders and law enforcement officials from across the state, recommends broad reforms to combat rising crime.

Candidate filing for Hennepin County Board special election opens Tuesday

The open District 6 seat represents cities including Edina, Hopkins, Minnetonka, Eden Prairie and Wayzata.
Dozens of patrons enjoyed beer, live music and conversation on Feb. 2 at Padraigs Brewing in Minneapolis.

Minnesota brewers say there's room for everyone, but some taprooms face uncertainty

National beer consumption is down as more beverage options, from hard seltzers to THC drinks, come on the market.
Dave McNary, Assistant Director of the Hennepin County Energy Recovery (HERC) garbage incinerator gives a tour of the center in Minneapolis, Minn., on

Activists detail shorter timeline for Hennepin County trash incinerator closure

There is a big difference in how quickly environmentalists and county officials say the HERC can be closed.
FILE Ñ The Hennepin County Government Center in Minneapolis, June 25, 2021. More than six months after a jury found the former Minneapolis police off

St. Paul company to run Hennepin County's heating and cooling system

The County Board approved a 10-year management agreement worth $40 million.
Jurors deliberated the fate of former Brooklyn Center police officer Kimberly Potter, who fatally shot Daunte Wright during a traffic stop in April, a

Hennepin County, Minneapolis leaders back Minnesota sanctuary state proposal

The North Star Act is expected to be a priority at the Legislature; it would not affect criminal proceedings.
Operators of the Hennepin County Energy Recovery (HERC) garbage incinerator at work in Minneapolis, Minn., on Thursday, Jan. 18, 2024. The county boar

Officials: Changes needed to close Hennepin County trash incinerator

County staff outlines funding and policy challenges of a zero waste future without the HERC.
Track has been installed near the Downtown Hopkins Southwest LRT station.

Hennepin County Board OKs another $100 million for SWLRT

The county is committed to covering more than half of a projected $340 million budget shortfall for the Green Line extension to Eden Prairie.
Ekta Prakash and Akiatu Pratt of the Department of Employment and Economic Development talked with prospective workers Cha Her of St. Paul and Nuhchi

Local governments struggle to afford benefits that draw workers to public jobs

Insurance costs vary, with some workers saying they can no longer afford jobs they love.
A large cast of volunteers transformed a suburban Woodbury front yard into an "Edible Estate" over the weekend. John and Catherine Schoenherr's lawn w

Hennepin County won't build anaerobic digester for compostable trash

Decision comes as county staff prepare plans to close the trash incinerator on the edge of downtown Minneapolis.
A consulting firm will gauge the overall condition of Target Field, how it compares to other Major League Baseball facilities and recommend future upg

Twins, ballpark authority to split cost of assessing Target Field's future needs

Stadium will host 15th Opening Day in April and is about halfway through the initial 30-year lease.

Hennepin County Board abandons deal to help North Memorial Hospital pay to care for the poor

County and hospital officials hold out hope a new deal can be found.

Two Hennepin Healthcare leaders quit after County Board implements new budget oversight

The new limits on the board overseeing HCMC came after a budget deficit prompted insurance changes.
Hennepin County security officers Elijah Hannah patrolled the third floor of Central Library Thursday January ,4, 2024 in, Minneapolis, Minn. ] JERRY

Facing more safety concerns, Hennepin County libraries ban hundreds

Library leaders say temporary bans are necessary to keep patrons safe, but some activists suggest that security disproportionately targets people of color and visitors who are struggling.

Minnesota advocates of open government question curbs on public comments

Some local leaders say it is better to interact with constituents without giving them a broad audience.
The Cordia district energy system and its four boilers has served downtown customers since 1972.

Under your feet: The massive, centralized systems that keep the Twin Cities comfy

District energy systems have been in the Minneapolis and St. Paul for decades. Here's how they work.
The $245 million Silver Ramp at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport need repairs that led to a dispute between airport officials and the co

MSP to pay $6.2 million to settle dispute with ramp contractor

The agreement reverses the firm's firing and notes that any problems were not due to the company's work.
Delta customers waited to check bags before their flights ahead of the busy MEA travel weekend Oct. 17, 2023, at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Ai

Airports commission: No, you can't smoke pot at MSP

The Metropolitan Airports Commission approved an ordinance Monday that makes it a petty misdemeanor to smoke or vaporize cannabis and hemp on airport property, even in areas designated for tobacco use.
The Hennepin County "point-in-time" homelessness census in January 2023.

Annual count reveals that more Minnesota families with children were homeless in 2023

Households with children experiencing homelessness grew by 27% from January 2022 and 2023.
Several brands of cantaloupe have been recalled because of a salmonella outbreak that's killed four and sickened more than 300.

Third Minnesotan dies from salmonella linked to cantaloupe

More than 300 have contracted salmonella in 42 states in outbreak tied to cantaloupe.
The Rock County Sheriff’s Office is asking for the public’s help locating a newer model maroon Chevrolet Z71 pickup that may have been involved in

Rock County sheriff seeks help finding pickup in hit-and-run death of Luverne man

Officials are looking for a newer maroon Chevrolet Z71 pickup, likely with front-end damage.

Two New Ulm men killed in head-on crash in southern Minnesota

Both men were killed in the crash early Saturday on Hwy. 15 in Brown County.

Hennepin County hires consultant to help workers with student loan forgiveness

County Board approves $500K deal with consultant to help navigate federal rules for the many county employees who have student debt.

Hennepin County Board split on hospital system budget, some frustrated over 'lack of transparency'

The board also approves $2.6 billion county budget, including a 6.5% property tax increase for 2024.
A light rail train stopped at the platform at 5th Street and Nicollet in Minneapolis. Transit is one of several areas overseen by the Metropolitan Cou

Lawmakers urged to let voters pick Met Council members

The legislative task force examining council's governance held its first listening session Friday in St. Paul.

Hennepin County is set to approve $2.6 billion budget. Here's what it pays for.

The County Board plans 6.5% levy increase largely for worker pay and benefits.
A legislative working group is focusing on young people who are already in the criminal justice system.

With juveniles committing more serious crimes, these local leaders are seeking solutions

A group of local leaders and law enforcement officials will make recommendations to the Legislature in February.
The Minnesota Nurses Association hold a news conference to discuss health insurance costs and a no-confidence vote on the HCMC president in Minneapoli

Insurance changes could prompt caregiver exodus, Hennepin health care workers say

The Hennepin County Board on Tuesday agreed to delay a planned budget vote to get more information on proposed health care changes.
The Westonka Library in Mound opened in 1972 and is scheduled to be replaced with a new, more environmentally friendly facility.

Westonka Library in Mound to be replaced with larger, more environmentally friendly building

Construction will begin in late 2024, and the west metro library will be closed for 15 months.
Bunk beds replace pews inside the former Zion Lutheran Church now utilized by Simpson Housing Services as a temporary homeless shelter in Minneapolis,

People working on front lines of the housing crisis cannot afford rent either

Case managers at Simpson Housing Services say their pay leaves them struggling.
The Hennepin Avenue Bridge over the Mississippi River, pictured in September 2019. Funding for repair work on the bridge was included in an infrastruc

Hennepin County lobbyists cost more than $310K. What did they accomplish?

Funding for an anaerobic digester and Hennepin Avenue Bridge repairs were among 2023 successes.
The Hennepin County Government Center in Minneapolis.

Technology will cost Hennepin County more than $41 million over next three years

Microsoft will provide software, data storage and technical support through 2026.
Waste is trucked in before being going into a boiler and being converted into energy at the Hennepin Energy Recovery Center, or HERC, in Minneapolis i

Live in Hennepin County? Here's why your trash bill will probably be bigger in 2024.

A disposal charge increase for trash haulers recently approved by the County Board will likely trickle down to residents' collection bills.
Hennepin County Commissioner Angela Conley walked her dog, Steve, in Minneapolis on Wednesday.

After a heart attack at 45, Hennepin County commissioner is focused on Black and Indigenous women's heart health

At Conley's urging, Hennepin County will dedicate $1 million to improving heart health disparities among women.
Susan Barksdale inserts her ballot after voting at Martin Luther King Park Recreation Center on Election Day in Ward 8 of Minneapolis, Minn. on Tuesda

It's Election Day: Who's running and what's on the ballot

Minneapolis and St. Paul will pick City Council members; schools have board members and tax requests before voters.
Dr. Andrew Baker, the Hennepin County chief medical examiner, gave a tour of the autopsy suite in the Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s facility in

Hennepin, Ramsey medical examiners skip some autopsies amid spike in overdose deaths

The increased workload means people age 55 or older who die of natural causes typically do not get post-mortem exams.
Five Minnesota cities will use ranked-choice voting in the Nov. 7 election.

How ranked-choice voting works in Minnesota and why some are skeptical

Five Minnesota cities will use ranked-choice voting in municipal elections.
Proponents say ranked-choice voting encourages more people to run for office, while opponents say it’s too complicated for many voters to understand

Opponents get ranked-choice voting back on the ballot in Minnetonka

Three years after it was approved by voters, some residents are trying to repeal it.
Heather West experienced an eviction and homelessness before finding stable housing. She now works with the Stable Housing is the Priority, (SHIP), Co

Twin Cities evictions have spiked again. Can Minnesota solve its housing crisis?

Housing advocates in Hennepin and Ramsey counties are scrambling to help a growing number of tenants facing eviction.
The Kmart at Lake Street and Nicollet Avenue, pictured in 2020.

The Lake Street Kmart's complicated — and controversial — history

Minneapolis leaders hoped the construction of the store would help revitalize a neighborhood, but the street closure it required came to be seen as one of the city's biggest planning blunders.
Rendering of a 19,000-seat amphitheater to be built near Canterbury Park in Shakopee.

New 19,000-seat amphitheater coming to Canterbury Park in Shakopee

The concert venue is part of a $400 million development project near the racetrack.
Activists held signs outside the Hennepin County Board meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 10, encouraging fast action on closing the Hennepin Energy Recovery Ce

Residents, environmental advocates disappointed in Hennepin County incinerator closure timeline

The Hennepin County Board voted unanimously Tuesday to work on a plan to close the Minneapolis facility between 2028 and 2040.
A voter fills out a ballot in St. Paul in November 2019.

Hennepin County will move special election because of conflict with Eid al-Fitr

A special election for the open Sixth District County Board seat had been scheduled for April 9; it was moved to May 14 because the original date coincided with the Muslim holy day.
The former Kmart at Nicollet Avenue and Lake Street in Minneapolis, pictured in March 2020.

Minneapolis seeks community input on reconnecting Nicollet Avenue at old Kmart site

A "family friendly" open house on Oct. 10 will feature free tacos and a chance for residents to provide input; a survey is also open on the city's website.
A man walked by a voting sign at the Minneapolis Central Library downtown during the August 2022 election.

Hennepin County special election falls on Eid al-Fitr, drawing criticism from a candidate

Three candidates have announced plans to run for the open Sixth District Hennepin County Board seat; the special election is scheduled for April 9.
The Hennepin County Board has extended a $2 million federal grant by another year.

Hennepin County Attorney's Office needs more time, funds for backlog of rape kits

The Hennepin County Board has extended a $2 million federal grant by another year as the office works to eliminate the backlog identified by police in 2019.
Commuters boarded the Orange Line BRT going southbound from the Lake Street station in Minneapolis.

Metro sales taxes jumped Oct. 1. Here's where the money will go.

The increase will raise more than $750 million in new revenue for transit and housing initiatives.
A light rail train stopped at the platform at 5th Street and Nicollet in Minneapolis.

Sales taxes will now cover Hennepin County's Metro Transit subsidies

New 0.75% sales tax hike will cover county's portion of operation and maintenance starting Oct. 1
Hennepin County Attorney candidate Mary Moriarty (right), and her partner Jen Westmoreland are greeted with cheers as Moriarty arrived victorious at h

School board chair, partner of Hennepin County Attorney, announces bid for vacant County Board seat

Jen Westmoreland, who is in her second term on the Hopkins school board, said she would recuse herself from any matters involving County Attorney Mary Moriarty.
Waste is trucked in before being going into a boiler and being converted into energy at the Hennepin Energy Recovery Center, or HERC, in February 2023

Wait until 2040 to close trash incinerator? Hennepin County leaders, activists want shorter timeline

A new report outlines the challenges of closing the Hennepin Energy Recovery Center, but frustrates those who say the incinerator is harming people and the environment.

Hennepin County Board sets maximum levy hike at 6.5%

New revenue would largely pay for employee raises and benefits; the board will finalize its budget plan and tax levy in December.