Monday, January 07, 2013
Legislative Eve. 'Twas the night before the session and all through the Capitol . . . I think I'll just stop right now with this particular analogy except to say that the beginning of each legislative session is kind of like the day the Montgomery Ward catalog came in the mail when I was a kid. My Christmas list was assembled within hours of the catalog's arrival and most of it was a bit on the outlandish side, making its delivery on Christmas Eve unlikely. It's the same way for most of us in the lobbying business are as adults. We starting putting our Christmas lists together with our clients all summer and fall, just waiting for Election Day to see who would be sending our Christmas letters to. That's all been decided and now it's time to get to work and try to get things done.
201 legislators will take their oaths of office tomorrow and committee meetings will start later this week. Most of the first two weeks will be reserved for introductory meetings with little serious business being conducted. That will change after the Governor's budget is released at the end of January. At that point, work will begin in earnest as the boundaries for the session--especially in terms of revenue--will become more clearly defined. From then, it will be a dash to the committee deadlines, which will likely be set for mid-to-late March. At that point, the omnibus funding and policy bills will have been constructed and be sent to the floor. Then there will be conference committees that will determine the final content of all the omnibus bills leading up to the adjournment date (required under the Minnesota Constitution) of May 20.
I look forward to hearing from anyone who has questions about what's happening at the Capitol. My contact language has remained the same. I can be reached at either 651-647-6251 (office) or 612-220-7459 (cell). My e-mail remains firstname.lastname@example.org .