Minnesota lawmakers are moving ahead with a plan to swap out executive branch fiscal umpires who price out bills with an agency internal to the Legislature. The drive to put the power in a legislative unit is being led by House Speaker Kurt Daudt and Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk.
A Minnesota lawmaker wants to make it crystal clear: State legislators can’t avoid arrest during session. Lawmakers’ supposed immunity from being arrested for drunken driving and other crimes has been a hot topic for years.
Democratic lawmakers say a string of recent explosive crude-by-rail derailments nationwide make it necessary to improve Minnesota’s railroad network. Five trains hauling crude oil have derailed since February. Sen. Scott Dibble, a Minneapolis Democrat, says it’s “sheer dumb luck” no similar accidents have happened in Minnesota. Seven or more trains haul North Dakota crude across the state daily.
A House committee on Wednesday is revisiting a century-old law forbidding the sale of liquor before 10 a.m. on Sundays.
At a rally Monday, members of “Protect Minnesota” talked about the need for a uniform background check on all gun sales.
Minnesota lawmakers could decide whether to regulate the ride-hailing industry this year. House and Senate legislators say they plan to introduce bills soon to toughen insurance regulations for companies like Uber and Lyft.
State officials will hold off for another year on deciding whether to expand Minnesota’s new medical marijuana program to residents suffering chronic pain. The move could someday extend the potentially potent medicine to tens of thousands more Minnesota residents and dramatically increase business for the state’s two medical marijuana manufacturers.
As vaccine skeptics fight laws that would force more parents to inoculate their kids, they are finding unexpected allies in conservative Republicans. Though the stereotype of a vaccine skeptic is a coastal, back-to-the-land type, it’s generally been Democratic-controlled states that have tightened vaccination laws.
On CBS Sunday Morning, a story on fantasy football featured a Minnesota woman’s league, and among the players were State Sen. Karin Housley and former Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch.
Minnesota lawmakers are caught in a dust-up over office space at the State Capitol, and it’s threatening to delay the massive Capitol restoration now underway. The three-year, $272 million project is on time and on budget. But the tenants in the new building — including the governor, the Senate, the House and the attorney general — cannot come to agreement over how much space they will control.
Minnesota lawmakers just got back to the Capitol, and now they’re leaving to study up on state issues. Demographers, economists and business executives are scheduled to address legislators at One Minnesota, an annual conference at the University of Minnesota that focuses on the top issues of the time.
Top Minnesota lawmakers have had early discussions about cramming more work into the next five months so they could skip a 2016 session amid a construction-ravaged Capitol. Senate Minority Leader David Hann raised the prospect Tuesday, and Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk hasn’t ruled it out. Bakk acknowledged having preliminary talks with House Speaker Kurt Daudt about that option.
Minnesota is the latest state considering a ban on powdered alcohol. The product is better known as “Palcohol.” Its inventor says it’s a convenient way to mix a drink, and federal regulators say it’s safe.
Gov. Mark Dayton says it is time to make sure no child in Minnesota goes hungry at school. This comes almost six months after a report revealed 46 Minnesota school districts had policies denying some children lunch, if they couldn’t pay for it.
On more of Minnesota’s two-lane state highways, motorists could soon be free to drive above 55 — legally. As part of an expansive budget bill signed into law last week, state lawmakers nudged transportation officials to boost the speed limit to 60 miles per hour on lane miles where it can “reasonably and safely” be done.
Minnesota Secretary of State Mark Ritchie said Wednesday he will no longer issue cards that appeared to give lawmakers immunity from being arrested for drunken driving or other crimes during a legislative session, saying his office isn’t bound by statute to distribute them.
Minnesota lawmakers are gone from the Capitol after ending the 2014 session on Friday night. It was an unusually short and productive session. Included on the completed list is the bill to legalize medical marijuana, which became among the most publicly visible — and contentious — issues of the year.
There was something a little different going on at the State Capitol Tuesday: A major bill that everyone appears to agree on. It means a second round of tax cuts could be heading your way. State lawmakers already passed income tax relief on the way to hundreds of thousands of middle income Minnesotans. Now, homeowners and renters are getting a break.
Minnesota lawmakers face a shrinking pile of unfinished business as they sprint this week toward the end of the legislative session and the campaign season just beyond.
Minnesota lawmakers are running out of time to pass a bill that could protect citizens from snooping in their private data by public employees. The sticking point is how to do it without making it too difficult for state agencies to do their jobs.
Minnesota lawmakers are ready to deliver $100 million more in tax relief, including extra refunds and credits for homeowners, renters and farmers.
Dozens of firefighters from across Minnesota arrived at the State Capitol on Wednesday to talk about the importance of fire sprinklers. According to fire crews, a deadly fire last weekend could have been prevented if the home had fire sprinklers.
Leading lawmakers have announced how they will dispense with what remains of Minnesota’s $1.2 billion budget surplus, a framework that suggests the election-year legislative session is moving toward conclusion. The agreement released Friday by Democratic leaders would allow for $103 million more in tax breaks on top of the $447 million already enacted this year.
Top Minnesota lawmakers are working to set the terms of a deal on tax cuts, new state spending and borrowing for construction that would enable them to end their session. Democratic leaders of the House and Senate said Thursday that they were closing in on a framework.
Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson is advising the Legislature to forge ahead with a bill making clear that lawmakers can’t avoid arrest for drunken driving or other crimes during the months of session. But Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Ron Latz responded Thursday that he’s not convinced that a new law is required to resolve what he sees as a misunderstanding of current law.