There are now less than two weeks until the end of the legislative session. Budget negotiations between Governor Dayton and the Republican majority in the House& Senate had been moving forward steadily. But late Monday night, the majority abruptly ended the negotiations and finalized their bills, despite the certainty that the Governor will veto them in their current form. Even worse, the bills were finalized with neither public hearings nor advance notice. Even the Governor and his staff found out about the majority's action from Twitter (which is how I found out as well). This article has a good summary of the situation.
As discussed in my legislative updates on April 27 and May 4, I have deep concerns with the Republican budget bills. Governor Dayton& his administration have detailed their own concerns in 190 pages of letters and nearly 1,700 meetings with Republican leaders. The Governor has made clear that he will veto the bills.
Now more than ever, we need Minnesotans to demand a budget that works for Minnesota. Please consider reaching out to legislative leaders with your thoughts on any of their bills:
Speaker Kurt Daudt (651-296-5399 and firstname.lastname@example.org)
Leader Paul Gazelka (651-296-5774 and email@example.com)
E-12 Education Budget
Just to highlight one budget, the E-12 Education Budget would provide a 1.5% annual increase in the basic funding formula for our public schools - an amount not even sufficient to keep up with inflation and pupil growth. This would lead to yet another year of budget cuts for our schools and others across Minnesota. This is especially shameful in that it comes at a time of fiscal surplus. Among many other concerns, the bill would also seriously shortchange early childhood, providing only a small increase for early-learning scholarships and freezing the Governor's initiative for voluntary Pre-K. In addition to the legislative leaders above, please consider contacting to urge the conference committee chairs to ensure that students & schools receive adequate support:
Rep. Jenifer Loon (651-296-7944 and firstname.lastname@example.org)
Sen. Carla Nelson (651-296-4848 and email@example.com)
I'll continue to keep you posted. Thank you for the honor of serving our community,
State Representative, District 64B
321 State Office Building
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