Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.
- Member for
- 3 years 9 months
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota state commissioners received marching orders this morning to prepare for a state government shutdown on July 1. However, Commissioner Jim Schowalter of Minnesota Management and Budget said the first priority remains trying to negotiate a deal for the next two-year budget. The commissioner said this morning's meeting was designed to allow state officials to draw up "some consistent approach" for a potential shutdown. Preparations for a shutdown are under way because Democratic Gov.
ST. PAUL -- Gov. Mark Dayton vetoed what he called a "mean-spirited, divisive, unMinnesotan" proposed constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage, but his action will not stop the public from voting on it next year. The symbolic veto this morning drew attention to the most publicized bill that passed the just-completed 2011 legislative session.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota officials are preparing for a July 1 government shutdown after Gov. Mark Dayton blamed right-wing Republicans for refusing to compromise on a new state budget. Democrat Dayton on Tuesday vetoed Republican lawmakers' $34 billion budget plan for the next two years and said there is a "strong likelihood" of a shutdown.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota Gov.
ST. PAUL -- The smiles seen on Jan. 4, opening day of the 2011 legislative session, became frowns by Monday as Minnesota's 201 lawmakers headed home with no idea when they will wrap up their primary job: writing a two-year budget. Republicans who run the Legislature said they did their part before the Monday night constitutional adjournment date. They passed 10 budget and tax bills to fund state government with $34 billion for the two years beginning July 1. However, Democratic Gov.
ST. PAUL -- A bill written to raise awareness of a rare disease that killed a southwest Minnesota boy is headed to the governor. On the last day of the Legislature's regular session, the Minnesota House voted 129-1 Monday in favor of creating Mitochondrial Disease Awareness Week in the third full week of September each year. The Senate already passed the bill. "This can affect anybody at any time," Rep. Rod Hamilton, R-Mountain Lake, said before the House vote. Hamilton brought the bill up after the death of 1-year-old Leo, son of Andrew Nesseth and Lindsay Chapman of Jackson County.
ST. PAUL -- All but the most naive know this really is not the final day the Minnesota Legislature meets this year. The state Constitution says today is the end, but Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton and Republicans who run the Legislature are no closer to agreement today than they were when the Legislature convened on Jan. 4. Already, the discussion has turned to a special legislative session and a possible government shutdown.
ST. PAUL -- An 18-month campaign about gay marriage began moments after the Minnesota House approved a constitutional amendment on the issue late Saturday. And if the five-hour House debate is any indication, Minnesotans are in for 18 months of emotional and hard-fought campaigning. The campaign is expected to bring in millions of dollars for both sides. An hour after the House voted 70-62 to ask voters to decide whether marriage should be defined as between a man and a woman, those opposed to the amendment launched their campaign, Minnesotans United for All Families. Bill sponsor Rep.
ST. PAUL -- Two colorful quotes demonstrate the tough state of the Minnesota Legislature. "Anyway, back to King Tut," Sen. Sandra Pappas, DFL-St. Paul, told fellow senators as she returned to a lengthy discussion of all things Tut and dinosaur, saying the Science Museum of Minnesota would be hurt by a bill cutting state programs. House Speaker Kurt Zellers, R-Maple Grove, showed the mood of chief policymakers when he described Gov.
ST. PAUL -- The two sides in Minnesota's budget conflict agree on one thing: They are in no mood to negotiate away issues they hold dear in the remaining seven days of the 2011 legislative session. Gov.