- Associated Press - Friday, April 18, 2014

The state at 7:15 p.m.

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TOP STORY:

COAL POWER-BORDER DISPUTE

MINNEAPOLIS - A federal judge ruled Friday that part of a Minnesota law designed to promote the use of renewable energy is unconstitutional because it attempts to control business that takes place outside state borders - and she barred Minnesota officials from enforcing it. By Amy Forliti. SENT: 600 words.

AROUND THE STATE:

PIG VIRUS

MILWAUKEE - Farms stricken with a deadly pig virus must report outbreaks as part of a new program to help monitor and possibly control the spread of the disease, the federal government announced Friday. Porcine epidemic diarrhea has killed millions of pigs in 27 states since showing up in the U.S. last May, with Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota and North Carolina being hit hardest. By M.L. Johnson. SENT: 470 words.

BUY THE FARM

MINNEAPOLIS - A case set for trial next week is expected to test Minnesota’s “Buy the Farm” law, which is meant to require utilities building high-voltage power lines to buy out farms in the way if affected landowners demand it. By Steve Karnowski. SENT: 700 words. AP Photos planned.

BEE SAFE

MOORHEAD, Minn. -As gardeners begin shopping for plants this spring, they may see plants marketed as safe for bees. Some nurseries are offering plants grown free of neonicotinoid insecticide, a widely used treatment that experts partly blame for the die-off of bee populations in Minnesota and across the country in recent years. SENT: 320 words, photos.

MIRACLE MEDAL AUCTIONED

MINNEAPOLIS - One of the Olympic gold medals earned after the famed “Miracle on Ice” hockey game in 1980 will be auctioned beginning next week. The Iron Ranger who helped Team USA beat the Soviets on the way to the gold, Mark Pavelich, is selling his medal through a Dallas auction house. Heritage Auctions will open bidding April 25. SENT: 300 words, photo planned.

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