EXTREME COLD = NO SCHOOL
Gov. Dayton closes all of state's schools, issues Emergency Executive Order
A chilly start to Monday, January 6, the First National Bank thermometer in Moose Lake reads -23 at 8:15 a.m.
Forecasted dangerously cold weather prompted Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton to close all of the state's K-12 public schools Monday.
In a press release sent out Friday, January 3, it was stated that the National Weather Service was predicting most of the state would experience the coldest temperatures in a decade, with lows reaching -30 degrees and wind chills predicted to reach as low as -50 degrees.
"The safety of Minnesota's schoolchildren must be our first priority," said Governor Dayton in the press release. "I have made this decision to protect all our children from the dangerously cold temperatures."
State law provides the Governor of Minnesota authority to "authorize the commissioner of education to alter school schedules, curtail school activities, or order schools closed."
With extreme cold temperatures also predicted for Tuesday, Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius informed schools that the decision about school cancellations for Tuesday would be up to the individual districts.
By Monday afternoon, most local schools had already announced they would be closed Tuesday.
Emergency Order issued
Monday evening, Gov. Dayton announced an Emergency Executive Order had been issued.
The press release states, "In response to cold weather across the entire upper Midwest, Governor Mark Dayton (January 6) issued Executive Order 14-1, providing relief from regulations incorporated in Minnesota Statues, section 221.0314, subdivision 9, pertaining to hours of service for motor carriers and drivers providing direct assistance in emergency relief efforts."
The Executive Order reads, in part, "Whereas, the entire upper Midwest is experiencing colder than average temperatures, and such weather is expected to continue, and
"Whereas, #1 fuel oil is a refined distillate that is needed for emergency service vehicles, buses, generators, diesel vehicles, and home heating; and
"Whereas, power companies may require nursing homes and hospitals to use generators because of the extremely high demand for electricity related to the low temperature; and
"Whereas, Minnesota pipelines and terminal locations have extremely low volumes of #1 fuel oil and licensed petroleum distributors are finding it very difficult to secure #1 fuel oil; and
"Whereas, extremely low volumes of #1 fuel oil are forcing fuel suppliers to travel to terminals around the state; and
"Whereas, drivers and carriers who are transporting #1 fuel oil, will also need to simultaneously transport gasoline, diesel fuel, ethanol and biodiesel.
"Now, Therefore, I hereby order that:
"1. A state of emergency exists in Minnesota that requires relief from regulations incorporated in Minnesota Statues, section 221.0314, subdivision 9, pertaining to hours of service for motor carriers and drivers providing direct assistance in emergency relief efforts ..."
The order concludes, "... Emergency relief from regulations for motor carriers and drivers transporting #1 fuel oil, gasoline, diesel fuel, ethanol and biodiesel to affected areas of the state, shall remain in effect for 30 days or until the commercial motor carrier or driver ceases direct assistance in providing emergency relief, whichever occurs first ..."