Briefly

Fire destroys pair of buildings

FAIRMONT — A fire broke out about 3:30 p.m. Saturday in rural Martin County, about 10 miles southeast of Fairmont. According to Fairmont Fire Chief Brandon Scott, the fire began in a storage shed before moving on to a second building.

“The cause of the fire is still under investigation at this time,” Scott said. “We were out there for about five hours, and two buildings were destroyed.”

Scott said that when attempts were made to put out the fire, hay also caught fire in the shed next to the storage shed.

No one was injured in the blaze.

Ceylon and Swea City Fire departments, and the Martin County Sheriff’s Office, assisted at the scene.

Changes set in northern pike rules

ST. PAUL (AP) — Major changes are coming for Minnesota’s northern pike fishing regulations.

The current daily and possession limit of three remains in effect for the coming ice fishing season on most waters. But new regulations announced Monday, which take effect for the May 12 opener, set up three distinct zones.

Most of Minnesota is in the north-central zone, where limits will rise to 10 to encourage anglers to keep small northerns. No more than two can be longer than 26 inches, and all from 22 to 26 inches must be released.

In the northeast zone, anglers can keep two but must release all from 30 to 40 inches, and can keep only one over 40 inches.

In the southern zone, anglers can keep two northerns, with a minimum size of 24 inches.

Special elections slated Feb. 12

ST. PAUL (AP) — Special elections to fill two legislative seats held by Minnesota lawmakers accused of sexual harassment will likely be held on Feb. 12.

Gov. Mark Dayton said Monday he planned to schedule the election for the second Monday in February. He can’t call the special election until he receives a resignation letter from Democratic Sen. Dan Schoen. Republican Rep. Tony Cornish has already resigned.

It’s an odd day for Minnesota voters who are accustomed to voting on Tuesdays. But an existing local school board election and scheduled caucuses left the governor with few options.

Schoen and Cornish announced their resignations after a string of sexual harassment allegations against them surfaced last month. Schoen represents a Cottage Grove-area seat. Cornish represented a rural southwestern Minnesota district.

The Legislature returns Feb. 20.

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