August 19 Live: Today's top Minnesota stories

Get the brief version of the biggest stories in Minnesota, all in one place.

Parents warned school buses may be late, not show up due to severe driver shortage in Minneapolis

The school bus driver shortage afflicting most of Minnesota is so bad in Minneapolis that parents are being warned that their children may face delayed services or buses not turning up when classes start next month.

Parents with kids in Minnesota's second-largest school district have received a series of phone messages from MPS in recent weeks informing them of the shortage.

In the most recent call, MPS highlighted a "serious shortage of bus drivers" ahead of the return to school, and "as a result, families and students may experience late buses or buses not showing up when expected."

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Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Thursday, August 19

Thursday's COVID-19 update from the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) includes 1,355 new cases and 8 newly reported deaths, all of them occurring in August.

The state's death toll is 7,750 since the start of the pandemic. Of the total deaths, 58.5% (4,534) were residents of long-term care.

Through August 18, the number of people with COVID-19 hospitalized in Minnesota was 473 (up from 461 reported Wednesday).

Of those hospitalized, 121 people were in intensive care and 352 were in general hospital care.

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Republican House leaders call for an investigation into sexual harassment and assault claims under Jennifer Carnahan's leadership

Multiple Republican leaders within the state House are calling on the party’s executive committee to investigate allegations surrounding Minnesota GOP Chairwoman Jennifer Carnahan.

The letter, dated on Wednesday, is signed off on by 11 state representatives, including House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt, Deputy Minority Leader Anne Neu Brindley and Minority Whip Barb Haley.

In it, they call on the Republican Party of Minnesota’s State Executive Committee to launch an “immediate, comprehensive investigation” into claims of sexual assault and harassment that allegedly occurred under Carnahan’s leadership.

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Minnesota State Fair could be COVID 'super-spreader event' without mask mandate, lawmakers argue

Five state legislators with health care backgrounds are urging the Minnesota State Fair to rethink its COVID-19 face mask recommendation and instead implement a mandate.

The two state representatives and three state senators, all with the DFL, wrote a letter to the Minnesota State Agricultural Society and State Fair Board of Managers Wednesday, hours after the fair announced it would "urge" — but not require — attendees to wear face coverings.

"The gold standard would be to require all attendees be vaccinated, but short of that, we ask that you set a clear and strong policy requiring masks for all attendees," the lawmakers' letter read.

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One killed in Mounds View shooting

One person was killed in a shooting in Mounds View Wednesday afternoon, and now police are searching for the suspect.

Mounds View police at 4:27 p.m. responded to the 2500 block of County Road I on reports of multiple shots fired and a person possibly shot, a news release says.

Police were also told the victim was in a white vehicle that had left the scene and was reported to be at Mounds View Boulevard and Pleasant View Drive.

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Coller: Do Vikings preseason games matter?

Mike Zimmer’s football teams have usually won during the preseason, so when the Minnesota Vikings lost 33-6 to the Denver Broncos at US Bank Stadium last Saturday, it was startling.

Mike Zimmer

Normally preseason results don’t get anyone all that riled up but Zimmer explained after the game that many of the players who struggled could be called upon during the season. Yes, they sat 31 players but the guys who were on the field like Dantzler, Stephen Weatherly, DJ Wonnum, Dakota Dozier, Hercules Mata’afa and a handful more have previous experience and are either fighting for jobs or are the direct backups to starters. Zimmer wanted them to show up.

From that perspective, his rage is justified. Last year the Vikings lost Danielle Hunter to injury and failed to even remotely replace his pass rush. They lost cornerbacks to injury and couldn’t cover anyone. Eric Wilson was a fine backup for Anthony Barr but the Vikings couldn’t hold down even a few weeks without Eric Kendricks.

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St. Paul eliminates minimum parking requirements for real estate developments

The City of St. Paul is eliminating off-street parking minimums for real estate developments. The City Council voted Wednesday to eliminate parking minimums across the city, modernizing the Capital city's zoning codes.

"Our rapidly growing population demands forward-facing public policy,” Mayor Melvin Carter said in a statement. “This simple step will help add much-needed housing and jobs as we seek to maximize this period of historic economic expansion in St. Paul."

St. Paul is the latest to eliminate parking minimums. Minneapolis passed a similar ordinance back in May.

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