Thursday, May 17, 2018

First Salvo (Well, maybe not the first).  Governor Dayton vetoed the tax bill passed by the House and Tuesday and the Senate on Wednesday, saying the benefits were tilted too heavily toward the rich and that the Legislature had not considered his request for $138 million in emergency funding for school districts.  The veto was expected, but that doesn't mean there weren't a few people who were surprised.  There are less than four days left in the 2018 legislative session which must adjourn by midnight Sunday under the Minnesota Constitution.  The bonding bill also failed in the Senate yesterday on a 34-33 vote (a bonding bill needs 60% of the legislative body--41 votes in the Senate and 82 votes in the House--in order to pass.  

The supplemental budget conference committee is not closed up as of yet and there may be a strategy to keep that open as part of the negotiations into which the final compromise could be incorporated.

The pension bill is also sitting on the House floor along with the proposed constitutional amendment that would dedicate the revenue generated by automobile repairs and replacement parts to the trunk highway fund.  I always take a jaundiced view of constitutional amendments and I can't figure out why the Legislature would want to cede additional authority over budget matters to the realm of the constitution.  But I don't have an election certificate (for which many can be thankful).  The first bill I would author would propose that Elvis Presley's birthday be a state holiday (like I said last sentence).

Here is a link to an MPR story on the Governor's veto of the tax bill:  Dayton vetoes tax bill over lack of school money

Special Education Story.  Solvejg Wastvedt put together this story on special education for MPR and it highlights many of the concerns being voiced about rising special education costs.  Well done Solvejg.

As schools struggle with costs, special education takes a toll

Given the fact that we still work on Elvis' birthday in Minnesota, I thought I would leave you with a dash of The King to tide you over until my next entry later today.  The Legislature may be re-working this title from "One Night with You" to "Four Nights with Us."

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