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(AP) Friends of a Minnesota couple who died when an Italian cruise ship capsized in January say they're relieved to hear the bodies of Barbara and Gerald Heil finally have been identified. The White Bear Lake couple were active members of St. Pius the X Catholic Church and were known for their service to others. Jerry Heil would visit Diane Vorland, who is confined to a wheelchair, every Thursday to bring her communion and recite the rosary. And he promised to drive Denny Hardy on errands after Hardy lost his license. Vorland says it's good news that the Heils finally have been identified after so long, and that the news should give closure to the family. Hardy says it's nice knowing that the Heils are now safely in the hands of God.
(AP) Wisconsin's elections board has voted unanimously to allow six Republicans running as Democrats to appear on the ballot in upcoming recall elections. The state Government Accountability Board voted Tuesday to allow the candidates to run because state law doesn't require people to prove they belong to any political party before they can run for office. Democrats objected saying the candidates falsely represented themselves and therefore filed fraudulent paperwork. The recalls target Republican Gov. Scott Walker, Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch and three incumbent senators. A fourth Senate seat is open. Republicans say the goal was to ensure there is a primary in all the races so the general election will be on the same date. The primary is May 8 and the general election is June 5.
(AP) Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton is already looking ahead to next year on a new Vikings stadium after his preferred proposal hit a critical setback in the Legislature. Dayton says it's up to lawmakers to revive the public financing package for the $975 million stadium before they head home for the year. But Dayton was pessimistic Tuesday after a committee defeat of the plan the night before.
The Democratic governor has made the stadium a priority this year, arguing it would result in construction jobs and keep a professional team without a lease from leaving the state. Dayton says he has ``no doubt'' it will prevail in 2013. Republican House Speaker Kurt Zellers blamed Democrats, who put up only one ``yes'' vote in the 9-6 defeat.
A 22 year old Sparta man was arrested over the weekend for trying to start his girlfriends car on fire with a sock. And for his efforts, he ended up getting tased. Jorden Hibbler is accused of shoving a sock into the gas tank of his girlfriends car and trying to light it on fire. A resident saw this....chased Hibbler away and called 911. Police were told by a jogger where the man was hiding and he was found hiding behind a house with a fenced in yard. After a brief confrontation, Hibbler was hit with 50 thousand volts. He now faces charges of attempted arson, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.
La Crosse County has had a drug court since 2001 and it's been succesful. Winona County hopes to get the same results as they are close to developing one there. County Attorney, Karin ( CAR-IN) Sonneman.
Representatives from law enforcement, community services and legal staff, along with several other members, all attended a weeklong training session in Minneapolis hosted by the National Drug Institute, where they learned about different aspects of the proposed program and drafted a list of policies and procedures. It should begin in the fall.