MAPLEWOOD (AP) -- Hill-Murray, a private Catholic school in this St. Paul suburb, is $1 million richer after receiving the largest single donation in school history, officials announced.
The money, from a donor who asked to remain anonymous, will be used for new construction and improvement to campus facilities, officials said Thursday. President Joseph Peschges said little has been done to upgrade the school since it was built in 1958.
"This particular person clearly believes in the school and what we're doing," Peschges said. "It's kind of like Santa came early to Hill-Murray."
Repairs planned for church steeple
ST. PETER (AP) -- Two years after a tornado destroyed the steeple of Christ Church at Gustavus Adolphus College, school officials are looking at repairing its replacement.
The 175-foot aluminum spire started leaning Thursday, and college officials roped off the area and summoned the engineer who built the $320,000 landmark.
Workers surveyed the damage Thursday night, and another inspection was planned Friday. The spire appears to have cracked or come loose from its bolts about a third of the way up.
Ventura to give State of the State address in House chamber
ST. PAUL (AP) -- Gov. Jesse Ventura announced he will give his State of the State address in the Minnesota House of Representatives chamber.
His office had already announced the governor would deliver his speech at 3 p.m. Jan. 4, which is the day after the 2001 Legislature convenes. But Ventura hadn't decided whether to give the address at the Capitol or at another location, which his predecessors, on occasion, have done.
Ventura opposes Indian land trust deal
WASHINGTON (AP) -- In a letter to the federal Bureau of Indian Affairs, Gov. Jesse Ventura said he opposes a second attempt by the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community to move land off the property-tax rolls and into trust.
The powerful tribe wants to essentially annex the 776 acres of farmland to its reservation, all of which it has bought since 1994. The tribe says it needs the land for housing for its members, who own Mystic Lake Casino. The BIA ruled against a similar request in 1998.
Putting the land into trust with the BIA would exempt the tribe from paying property taxes and adhering to local zoning laws.
Billy Graham released from Mayo
ROCHESTER (AP) -- The Rev. Billy Graham has been discharged from the Mayo Clinic and was looking forward to being home for the holidays, the clinic said Thursday.
The 82-year-old evangelist was at Mayo for an adjustment to a shunt that drains fluid from his brain. He got two weeks of inpatient and outpatient treatment and his medical team was "very pleased with his progress," the clinic said in a statement.
"He is looking forward to being home for the holidays, and thanks his many well-wishers for their thoughts and prayers," the statement said.
Man competent to stand trial in slayings of five relatives
ANOKA (AP) -- A Circle Pines man was ruled competent to stand trial in the killings of five of his relatives as they slept in their home.
Despite Thursday's ruling, lawyers for Larry Dame, 28, said they still planned to argue that Dame is mentally ill.
Dame is charged with five counts of first-degree murder. According to a criminal complaint, Dame told police that he used a hammer and knife to kill his sister, Donna Mimbach, 29, her husband, Todd Mimbach, 32, and their three children Oct. 19.
Relatives have said Dame had been complaining of hearing voices in his head and that he drank excessively to quiet those voices.
Dame has a history of violence and trouble.
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