Posted at 6:42 AM on April 7, 2011
by Tom Scheck
Filed under: Daily Digest
The House and Senate have completed work on their respective budget bills. The House wrapped up its work early this morning after it passed a HHS budget bill. The proposal makes deep cuts in health spending but also relies on budget savings that aren't guaranteed to be there.
The House also passed a State Government Finance bill that trims the state's workforce by 15 percent.
House and Senate conference committees now have to compromise on their differences. Gov. Dayton says he won't negotiate with them until he sees their finished product. In other words, the budget stare down begins.
Gov. Dayton issued an emergency flood declaration.
MnDOT unveiled its list of 2011 construction projects.
The Senate Commerce Committee approved the so-called "Surly bill."
Lawmakers would let the U of M's Board of Regents decide alcohol sales at their respective stadiums.
GOP Sen. Michael Jungbuaer was struck by a car when he was running yesterday morning. He spent the night in the hospital.
DFL Sen. John Harrington has signed on to the Vikings stadium bill.
DFLers are continuing to push for an anti-bullying bill.
STD rates in Minnesota reach record levels.
Dayton will speak in Woodbury next week.
President Obama and House and Senate leadership met last night to discuss the budget situation. He said there was progress made but no deal yet. Lawmakers have until the end of the week to reach a deal and avoid a shutdown.
The GOP is preparing to pass a one-week extension to the current budget.
GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann and DFL Rep. Keith Ellison gave dueling budget speeches in Washington D.C. yesterday.
The PoliGraph says Bachmann's claims on the shutdown are on point.
Bachmann says she doesn't think there will be a government shutdown.
DFL Sen. Al Franken says the government shouldn't shut down.
DFL Rep. Collin Peterson received an award from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
A sitting state supreme court justice, who appeared to be sympathetic to Gov. Scott Walker's anti-union efforts, is losing the Wisconsin Supreme Court race by a slim margin. A recount is likely.
Race for President
A staffer for Pawlenty was arrested for public intoxication and trespassing after knocking on a door of a home in the early morning hours.
Former Gov. Tim Pawlenty's exploratory presidential campaign is planning a big fundraiser on May 18.
D'Amico and Sons catering confirmed to MPR News that Pawlenty's campaign has reserved the atrium space of International Market Square for an event that day.
Someone with knowledge of the event told us the evening gathering in Minneapolis is one of several scheduled around the country. It's not clear who is invited to the Minneapolis fundraiser, how much money will be raised or how many people will be there. D'Amico and Sons says the space can accommodate up to 1,200.
A Pawlenty spokesman declined to comment on the upcoming fundraisers.(4 Comments)
GOP Sen. Julie Rosen says a Vikings stadium bill is imminent.
"This week," she said, as she walked into the Senate floor session this morning.
"If not today, it's going to be tomorrow. We're just trying to get through a few conference committees, a few serious bills."
Rosen and GOP Rep. Morrie Lanning have been telling reporters and the public that a bill would surface after the House and Senate passed their respective budget bills.
MPR obtained a draft of the bill last week. You can read it here.
No word yet this morning on whether Lanning will introduce the bill this week.
Senate GOP leaders held a news conference today to declare success in delivering a two-year budget plan that doesn't raise taxes. Dayton's budget plan relies heavily on an income tax increase for top earners to erase a projected $5 billion deficit and avoid deep spending cuts. Republicans still aren't budging on the tax issue, but Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch, R-Buffalo, said she thinks there are areas of potential agreement in several bills.
"Traditionally some have gone through and passed, and others, there's been sort of a back and forth veto process," Koch said. "I don't know how helpful that's been in the past. I think for us those discussions should happen in conference committee, and if we can get some successes and get some forward momentum on bills, why wouldn't we?"
Democrats remain critical of the bills. Senate Minority Leader Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook, said he doesn't think Dayton will sign any of the finance bills until GOP leaders remove most of the contentious policy provisions.
"The governor has been pretty clear he's not going to take any policy provisions," Bakk said. "So, they're either going to take them out, or they're destined to a certain veto."
Here's the Senate GOP news conference: Listen
Here's the Senate DFL response: Listen