Bonding bill looking for 41 friends in the Senate
Posted at 4:32 PM on May 18, 2008 by Michael Marchio (2 Comments)
Here's an interesting little factoid. Bonding bills need 60 percent of the vote in each chamber to pass. This usually isn't a problem at all, because pretty much every member has a project included in the overall bill. Everyone votes for it, everyone gets something to bring home to their district. However, the one we're supposed to see today, including the Central Corridor, Lake Vermilion and a new veteran's home, might be different.
Rural lawmakers have never been nuts for light rail, because it doesn't serve their districts, and Iron Range lawmakers have been cool to the Vermilion idea because so much land in their area is already state-owned, and not bringing in tax revenue. The veterans home may have the fewest number of lawmakers who have voiced outright opposition, but the question is, can a bonding bill with only three items pick up enough votes to pass. In the Senate, the magic number is 41, and in the House, the number is 81. These projects were clearly a key part of the overall budget negotiations. Will leadership be able to round up the votes to pass a bill they might not love? Sen. Larry Pogemiller said he wants to process it within the next 20 minutes, so we'll find out soon.
The Senate just tabled HF615, Rep. Neva Walker's sex ed bill after Sen. Warren Limmer (R-Maple Grove), never one to be shy with amendments, offered this one:
"Section 1. [120B.21] TEACHING OF HOMOSEXUALITY OR BISEXUALITY.
A school district must not authorize or permit the promotion of homosexuality or bisexuality or allow the teaching of homosexuality or bisexuality as an acceptable lifestyle. This promotion or teaching is prohibited."
They've recessed for right now, we'll see it they take it back up this afternoon after they get some of the big bills out of the way.
Over in the House, HF1812, the budget balancer just passed 115 ayes to 19 nays, and Rep. Sertich said they're going to recess for an hour until the bonding bill, tax bill and fish and game bill are ready for votes.
UPDATE: The Senate and House have both decided to recess for an hour.
Ah, the Senate A13 amendment includes 2 million for the Old Cedar Ave bridge? I didn't catch that was part of the global agreement. Is there a need to sweeten the pot for Bloomington legislators?
Posted by Aaron | May 18, 2008 5:46 PM
And...after Dick Day's fantasyland speeches, looks like it's over the hump - at 50-16 right now. Where is Torres-Ray? Oops, now it's 49-17.
Posted by Aaron | May 18, 2008 6:19 PM