Like an accordion of massive steel boxes, 15 empty freight cars lay piled Friday along a stretch of Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad track. It’s BNSF’s mainline to the west coast, and it averages about 56 trains a day. Roughly twenty percent of that traffic is made up of the long tanker cars hauling heavy crude oil from North Dakota.
A large coalition of transportation, business and labor interests called Tuesday for a new 5 percent sales tax on fuel in Minnesota to help raise money for roads and transit projects.
As Minnesota’s legislative session nears, one of the state’s minimum-wage champions has issued a challenge. Five House colleagues accepted Golden Valley Democrat Rep. Ryan Winkler’s invitation Tuesday to live for a week on the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour.
Minnesota drivers using cell phones are distracted, and sometimes deadly. Craig Carlson and Ron Rajkowski were killed in 2011 by a distracted driver in a construction zone who was traveling at a high speed. Carlson’s widow, Deb Carlson of Ramsey, says her husband was killed in an instant. “[The] car that was traveling at 70 miles per hour,” Carlson said.
Democratic lawmakers who lead House transportation panels are seeking a menu of transportation tax and fee hikes including a five-cent increase in the state gas tax.