As Democrats prepare to take control of the Minnesota Legislature, interest groups have started lining up with funding wish lists for the 2013 session. There's a pent-up demand for spending after a series of budget deficits and two years of Republicans in charge.
Gov. Dayton's veto this week of an end-of-session tax bill has caused some big headaches for several Minnesota cities. The bill included tax provisions linked to a dozen local development projects, which city officials are now scrambling to try to save.
The Minnesota Senate has given final legislative approval to a tax bill smaller and less expensive than one vetoed earlier by Gov. Mark Dayton. Republican leaders say they hope the governor will sign this one.
The bill would borrow $496 million for projects including college building upgrades, flood prevention and improvements to the Capitol. The measure is now up for debate in the State Senate.
State lawmakers are heading home for a week-long break with a bonding bill still unresolved for the 2012 session. With adjournment likely within the next few weeks, Republicans leaders in the House and Senate have not yet taken votes on their competing proposals for public works construction projects.
State Sen. Al DeKruif says the several bills he's sponsoring to keep some services open during a government shutdown simply reflect what it means to run a good state.
Minnesota finance officials are projecting a second consecutive budget surplus. The new economic forecast released Wednesday shows a $323 million cushion for the current two-year budget cycle. But it also still shows a return to red ink looming two years down the road.
Gov. Mark Dayton and state lawmakers are headed into the 2012 legislative session with a budget surplus, news that has a lot of elected and appointed officials taking credit for the state's return to the black. But much of the $876 million surplus has little to do with the actions taken in the past year.
Minnesota finance officials released a report Tuesday that says last summer's 20-day state government shutdown had a minimal cost to the state.
Was Minnesota's 20-day government
shutdown a money saver or budget drain? The Department of Minnesota Management and Budget plans to
answer that question Tuesday with a report detailing costs and
savings during the July standoff.
Economic growth in Minnesota is slowing to the point that Gov. Mark Dayton and the Legislature will likely have to overcome another budget deficit, state economist Tom Stinson told lawmakers on Thursday.
Questions remain about details of the tobacco bonds that Minnesota finance officials are preparing to sell as part of the state budget.
Eighteen Minnesota House members who declined paychecks during last month's state government shutdown went back for the money.
The new state budget will double costs to counties for committed sex offenders, and some say that may affect how those criminal cases are handled.
A state-funded program that helps immigrant doctors qualify to practice in Minnesota has become a casualty of the state budget agreement.