An expensive office building for lawmakers at the Capitol is facing new scrutiny. The four-story glass, steel and stone complex would sit across the street from the Capitol, and include offices for 45 of Minnesota’s 67 state senators. But the cost and design are raising eyebrows, even from supporters like Gov. Mark Dayton, who called the project “overly lavish.”
The up-and-down medical marijuana bill at the Capitol may be down again. Top lawmakers in the House and Senate say it’s not likely to pass this year. Advocates of legalizing medical marijuana are hoping to make Minnesota the 20th state in the country to do so. Thursday, the advocates said it’s possible to pass it this year. But it’s not about medicine at this point at the Capitol; it’s about math.
Minnesota state lawmakers are trying to slow down a plan from the Department of Public Safety that would restrict public access to driver’s license data, including the bulk sale of data to insurance companies and car dealers. DPS officials say they made the change after thousands of snooping incidents into personal driver’s license records. But insurance industry executives, and Insurance Federation of Minnesota Vice President Mark Kulda, say it could add money to your insurance bill.
Minnesota lawmakers have a difficult job ahead. They must decide what to do about the Minnesota Sex Offender Program, now that a federal judge has ruled that it is broken and in need of repair.
As the boys state hockey tournament skates into the Xcel Energy Center, it’s another showdown in St. Paul that some high school athletes are fighting to win. Lawmakers are wondering if some students and their parents are going too far to gain a competitive edge.
A group of health experts and faith leaders were at the state capitol Monday to ask lawmakers to raise wages to improve the health of workers. Statistics show that low-income workers die eight-years earlier than other workers. Shaquonica Johnson, 37, has been a personal care attendant for 15 years. She works several different jobs at $8.50 an hour to care for her two children.
Minnesota Department of Administration officials estimate it would cost at least $2.4 million to rent temporary space for state senators and staff during the ongoing Capitol renovation.
Minnesota lawmakers have been told that a final decision on a new Senate Office Building must be made within weeks or a related renovation of the state Capitol will cost more and take longer.
Fears of prying from the sky have some Minnesota lawmakers seeking clamps on law enforcement’s use of unmanned aerial drones to gather evidence.
Students at Concordia University are attempting something not a lot of college students try to do. They’re going to the Minnesota Legislature to get some laws changed, including one controversial loophole for the lawmakers themselves.
Salaries of the top-paid employees in Minnesota city and county government have risen sharply since the state peeled back a restriction that made it rare for local personnel to earn more than the governor.
Lawmakers weighing where to send public construction aid are touring several Minnesota cities with projects in the 2014 mix. Members of the Senate Capital Investment Committee are headed to eight cities this week after spending three days on the road earlier in the month.
In Minnesota, veterans rallied at the Vietnam Memorial in St. Paul to show their support of the national movement. They talked about the closing of the national war memorials and the suspension of death benefits to military families.
Minnesota state legislators are struggling with how to craft new laws that would effectively combat the growing use of synthetic drugs. Several state House committees met Wednesday to strategize how to address problem that medical and law enforcement officials say is rapidly getting worse.
Minnesota leaders are taking stock of state departments that work in tandem with the federal government to determine those most at risk in the shutdown.
Two-year union contracts providing Minnesota state workers three percent annual raises are up for review by a panel of legislators. The Subcommittee on Employee Relations is deciding whether to ratify the deals.
A special session is expected to get underway today at the Minnesota State Capitol. Lawmakers are expected to deal with disaster relief after last June’s storms.
Starting Monday, Minnesota’s tax on tobacco is the sixth-highest in the country. The tax just jumped to $2.83 from $1.60, making the average pack of cigarettes in Minnesota now $7.51. Lawmakers who upped the tax said they did it not only to raise money, but to get people to quit.
Pressure is building for thousands of college students who could soon be paying more for school loans — a lot more, if Congress doesn’t act soon.
A Minnesota group that formed to defeat a gay marriage ban, and successfully lobby for legalizing same-sex marriage, is taking another political step today: Defending lawmakers who voted yes on gay marriage.
There was a lot of debate at the Capitol this year about pay raises for Minnesota lawmakers. But a WCCO investigation found soaring salaries are actually going to state employees who work as staff members.
Minnesota state lawmakers promised when the legislative session began that their top priority was setting a new state budget. To that end, they produced a $38.3 billion two-year spending plan that hikes taxes on top income earners and on cigarettes, and distributes hefty spending increases to public schools, freezes tuition at state colleges and steers new money to job-creation programs.
Top Minnesota lawmakers purposely delayed the start of a new sales tax on warehousing services until next April in case they need to revise or undo it before then. The storage service tax, which doesn’t apply to mini-storage rentals, became a point of dispute.
The final pieces of Minnesota’s next two-year, $38 billion budget were falling into place Sunday as state lawmakers clocked long hours and held a succession of late-night debates at the Capitol.