World News – US – A final blow on a Minnesota bail bill?


Upon returning to the State Capitol in February, leaders of the divided Minnesota Legislature identified a number of topics they hoped to find in common ground near the top of the list was a plan to borrow a billion dollars or more to pay for upgrades to roads, state buildings and other public infrastructure projects

Nine months later, a deal on what in Capitol Hill jargon is called a linking bill remains elusive

Lawmakers to meet in St Paul again on Monday for fifth special session triggered by Gov Tim Walz extension of pandemic peacetime state of emergency Assembly presents yet another opportunity for lawmakers to adopt the bail bill

Discussions between Walz and legislative leaders to reach a deal continued throughout the week Some insiders rate the outlook at 50/50 or better

Unions, local officials and others who lobbied the bill have stepped up their lobbying efforts, citing an urgent need to give the green light to the projects and the jobs they will create

« We cannot afford not to pass this bill, » said Jessica Looman, of the Minnesota State Building and Construction Trades Council « The economic realities of COVID are real and harsh, and winter is coming »

Monday: The Minnesota Legislature convenes a fifth special session to consider Tim Walz’s COVID-19 pandemic state of emergency in peacetime

The bail bill, unlike most laws that cross Capitol Hill, requires a three-fifths majority to pass This gives unusual power to minority caucuses in the House and Senate

In early May, minority parliamentary leader Kurt Daudt drew a line in the sand: no support for a bail bill unless the governor agrees to end the state of emergency in peacetime

The regular session ended at the end of May, with emergency powers in place and ties at a standstill

Over the summer, the House GOP’s objections broadened to include their lack of participation in legislative discussions and what they called « poison pill » provisions in a version backed by the DFL at a special July session In the Senate, the LDF caucus complained that the majority Republicans did not seek membership

Other prominent leaders, meanwhile, have been working on the details of the size and shape of a binding package Rumors were circulating that talks were drawing closer in late summer, but funding rules tied to the sale of previously authorized bonds prevented votes in August or September

Now with less than four weeks before the election, lawmakers are giving him one last chance Committee chairs have drafted a bill they say can be changed to please everyone

While House Republicans would be open to a bill, a looming budget deficit emerged as another wrinkle Given the dire financial outlook, which includes a $ 4 billion deficit this budget cycle, Republicans want the bill be revenue neutral, meaning it would include reductions to offset any additional debt service or costs included in a final deal

Mid-week, Walz expressed hope that a deal will be reached He cited constructive talks with the two Senate leaders and his schedule included a call with House Speaker Melissa Hortman

Home Care, Pandemic, Minnesota State Capitol, Healthcare, Saint Paul

News from around the world – United States – One final blow on a bill in Minnesota?



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