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
- 4 years 11 months
ST. PAUL - Gov. Tim Pawlenty used his line-item veto authority today to chop more than $200 million from a public works construction bill the DFL-led Legislature sent him despite his warnings it was too big. Republican Pawlenty carved the $925 million bill down to $717 million, stripping funding for public college and university projects, sports facilities projects, transit construction and other local projects. Pawlenty has made it clear for weeks that he cannot accept the $925 million public works funding bill that lawmakers passed.
ST. PAUL -- Some bars are pegging their survival hopes on "smoking shacks." Numerous rural representatives said during a marathon House session Thursday and Friday that allowing smokers to light up in shelters near bars could save those businesses. Rural Democrats joined Republicans to approve 73-59 what Rep. Bud Heidgerken, R-Freeport, called "smoking shacks." The provision, placed in a 370-page House budget-balancing bill, would provide bars with a loophole to the statewide smoking ban lawmakers passed last year.
ST. PAUL -- Most state agencies would cut budgets by 3 percent to 4 percent, money would be moved from place to place, and budget reserves would fall under Minnesota legislators' attempts to balance the state budget. The House and Senate debated different but similar bills Thursday to fill a projected $935 million state budget deficit.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota senators voted to raze Gov.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota lawmakers overwhelmingly approved borrowing $925 million for construction projects across the state Wednesday, but supporters of hundreds of projects remain in limbo, awaiting what appears to be another round of discussions. Debate in the House and Senate centered on the main dispute between Republican Gov.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota's Democratic-led Legislature is ready to send Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty a public works funding bill he has indicated he doesn't like, setting the stage for a possible veto. Legislative leaders plan votes in the full House and Senate today on borrowing $925 million for state construction projects -- $100 million more than Pawlenty wants.
ST. PAUL -- Size matters. At least it does when it comes to a public works projects funding bill. Key lawmakers and Gov. Tim Pawlenty discussed the issue Thursday, barely touching specific projects, Sen. Keith Langseth, DFL-Glyndon, said. "Ninety percent of the talk was about size," Langseth added after emerging from the governor's office. Democratic leaders in the Legislature want to spend $100 million more than Pawlenty on projects such as community events centers, college facility repairs and park improvements.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota's main rural economic development program would be history -- but local governments would get more state aid -- under a bill senators are considering. Sen. Tom Bakk's proposal, expected to pass out of his Senate Taxes Committee today, contains a list of items Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty does not support.
ST. PAUL -- Legislative plans to fill a $935 million state budget gap are taking shape in ways similar to a proposal outlined by Gov.