- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 21, 2014
Minneapolis Super Bowl may seek more tax breaks

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - Gov. Mark Dayton and other officials said Wednesday that they’ll probably ask the Legislature for more tax breaks to sweeten the 2018 Super Bowl for fans now that the NFL has awarded the big game to Minneapolis.

Dayton and members of the city’s bid committee held a news conference Wednesday to celebrate the affirmation a day after the NFL chose Minneapolis largely because of the $1 billion stadium being built where the Metrodome used to stand. He said the state has not promised any public money apart from a sales tax exemption for Super Bowl tickets that remains on the books from when Minnesota hosted it in 1992.

“There’s no other commitment, explicit or implicit, and that’s where it stands” Dayton said.

But Michele Kelm-Helgen, chair of the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority, said the organizers will sit down with NFL officials to discuss their needs. They’ll likely then ask the Legislature next year for sales tax exemptions for tickets to some of the other festivities such as the NFL Experience exhibition, she said, and ask private donors to cover the rest.

The NFL requires hosts to exempt Super Bowl players from state income taxes, but Kelm-Helgen said the governor and legislative leaders “weren’t comfortable” with supporting that. So the local corporate community will foot that bill, she said. There will be no exemption from lodging taxes for out-of-town fans, she said, but there may be discussion of an exemption for NFL staffers.


Court upholds revocation in fleeing abuse case

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - The Minnesota Supreme Court has narrowly upheld revoking the driver’s license of a woman who says she drove drunk only to escape from her abusive husband.

The Star Tribune (https://strib.mn/1lF8XGC) reports the court said in a 4-3 decision that Jennifer Axelberg couldn’t use the so-called necessity defense to challenge the revocation of her license after an arrest on a drunken-driving charge in 2011.

Axelberg claimed the damage that could have resulted from obeying the law outweighed the harm caused by breaking it.

Axelberg and her husband had an argument that turned physical at a cabin near Mora. Axelberg said she ran to her car for protection from her husband who was chasing her.

Her husband pleaded guilty to domestic abuse. The couple are now sober and have mended their relationship.


Ice still hanging on at Lake Superior

DULUTH, Minn. (AP) - Summer is almost here, but ice is still stacked up on the Lake Superior shoreline in Duluth.

WDIO-TV (https://bit.ly/1jVZv09https://bit.ly/1jVZv09 ) reports Lake Superior is still about 3 percent covered with ice.

Ron Williams of the National Weather Service says the area has had “just tons of ice and it just hasn’t been able to melt.” He says the water is hovering around 34 degrees, and the ice will melt faster once the lake reaches 40 degrees.

The areas packed with ice include the head of the lake and the Apostle Islands.

Williams says a south wind is coming this weekend that will push that ice to the north. That, along with warmer weather, will start melting the ice fast.


Minnesota woman sentenced for bank robbery

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - A 23-year-old Minnesota woman accused of robbing five banks within a few weeks has been sentenced to 3½ years in federal prison.

Ranya Al-Huthaili of Roseville was sentenced Wednesday. She also was ordered to pay restitution to all the banks.

Al-Huthaili earlier pleaded guilty to robbing the Dairy State Bank in Menomonie, Wisconsin, on Sept. 9, 2013. She also admitted robbing another bank in Wisconsin and three in Minnesota.

Prosecutors say in all five robberies, Al-Huthaili walked into the banks, handed the teller a note demanding money and took off with more than $20,000 in total.

She was arrested on the day of the Menomonie robbery outside Rosedale Shopping Center after buying a laptop with the stolen money.

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