Minnesota Senate

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Dayton Cries Foul On Move To Delay Commissioner Raises

Gov. Mark Dayton is objecting to the state Senate’s vote to delay hefty raises for members of the governor’s cabinet. The Senate voted 63-2 Thursday to suspend the pay hikes Dayton granted to commissioners last month.

02/12/2015

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Senator Gives Up Outside Job Despite Ruling In His Favor

A Minnesota state senator resigned Friday from an outside job leading a municipal association that lobbies at the Capitol, despite a ruling from ethics regulators that it wouldn’t constitute a conflict of interest.

02/06/2015

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Bill Pushes Courses Ahead Of Divorces When Children Involved

A proposal before Minnesota lawmakers would make it a requirement that parents with minor children take a marriage dissolution course before their divorce case could proceed. The bill being introduced Thursday in the Senate includes some good-cause waivers, such as not being able to afford the four-hour class.

02/05/2015

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Senate Dems Expand Ed Focus To Counselors, Dual Credit

Democrats in the Minnesota Senate are expanding their focus on education. They want to increase school funding for counselors and programs that let high school students earn college credit.

02/04/2015

pre-K, school generic

Child Care Industry Cool To Free Preschool Push

Representatives of Minnesota’s child care industry say a push to fund all-day preschool will make their services more expensive. Senate Democrats want to set aside money for statewide preschool programs starting with the 2015 school year.

01/21/2015

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Office Space Disputes Threaten Capitol Renovation

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.

01/14/2015

Capitol Restoration 1-14-15

Minnesota Officials Consider Taking 2016 Session Off-Site

The ambitious idea of Minnesota lawmakers skipping next year’s session to avoid the Capitol construction has morphed into an alternative plan. Now senior legislators and state officials are taking a hard look at moving the Legislature’s session off-site.

01/14/2015

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Tax Bill Matching Up Minnesota, Federal Code Steams Ahead

Minnesota lawmakers moved Tuesday to set up swift approval of tax deductions and credits affecting thousands of people and business owners getting ready to file 2014 forms. Tax committees in the House and Senate advanced legislation that lines Minnesota’s code up with some recent federal changes. Final votes in each chamber could come later this week, sending the bill to a supportive Gov. Mark Dayton before personal income tax filing season begins next week.

01/13/2015

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GOP Takes Control Of Minnesota House

Republicans have grabbed control of the Minnesota House and broken up the Democrats’ short run of one-party rule at the Capitol. House Speaker Paul Thissen conceded early Wednesday that Democrats had lost control of the chamber.

11/04/2014

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McFadden Releases Plan For Legislative Action

Republican Senate candidate Mike McFadden is making several promises for legislative action if he defeats Sen. Al Franken. McFadden vows to help write a balanced budget amendment — and a bill that would halt lawmaker pay if Congress doesn’t pass a budget — within his first 100 days in office.

10/08/2014

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Franken More Flush Than McFadden For Final Month

With less than a month before Election Day, Republican Senate candidate Mike McFadden has less than $1 million banked to oust Sen. Al Franken. McFadden’s campaign says he raised more than $2 million in the three-month period ending in September. The total announced Tuesday is his largest during a fundraising quarter.

10/07/2014

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Abeler Says He’ll Take Weekend To Decide On Senate

State Rep. Jim Abeler says he’ll take the weekend to decide whether to press forward in the Minnesota Senate race or bow out. Abeler left a primary campaign on the table. But he says Mike McFadden’s endorsement win “raises the bar” and would complicate a bid. Filing for the office closes Tuesday.

05/31/2014

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Minnesota Senate Backs $1B For Building Projects

The Minnesota Senate has passed an $846 million borrowing package for construction projects and sent it to Gov. Mark Dayton for his signature, finishing a crucial piece of business as lawmakers work toward adjournment. The bonding bill vote was 47-17, easily exceeding the required three-fifths majority.

05/16/2014

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Minnesota Lawmakers Strike Medical Marijuana Deal

Minnesota lawmakers have a deal on a medical marijuana bill that would set up eight distribution sites and allow qualified patients to access the drug in oil, pill and vapor form. The agreement announced Thursday was crafted to suit concerns of Gov. Mark Dayton, who backs it.

05/15/2014

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2 Views Of Legal Medical Pot Head To Committee

Two very different plans for legalizing medical marijuana in Minnesota went to a legislative conference committee on Tuesday, leaving advocates hoping for an agreement acceptable enough to Gov. Mark Dayton to become law.

05/13/2014

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Final Senate Legal Bill Comes Due In Brodkorb Case

The Minnesota Senate has received its final legal bill in a now-settled lawsuit filed by a fired staffer that cost more than $400,000 to defend against. The invoice due for ratification Wednesday by the Senate Rules and Administration Committee lists $7,252 in remaining legal fees.

05/13/2014

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Minnesota Pot Debate Centers On Plant Access

Gov. Mark Dayton says he’s still hopeful lawmakers can fashion a medical marijuana compromise that gets help to ailing people but doesn’t allow for access he fears would be too wide. Dayton said Monday that he has top aides working with legislators on a bill that can become law.

05/12/2014

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Minnesota Senators Could Act On Medical Marijuana

The next move in legalization of medical marijuana in Minnesota is up to the state Senate. Senators could vote Monday to adopt a House bill that is more restrictive than theirs.

05/12/2014

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Dayton Says He Will Sign House Medical Pot Bill

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton has sent a letter to House and Senate sponsors of their respective medical-marijuana bills. Dayton said he would sign the bill into law if legislators adopted the House version as is. Dayton sent the letter to Minneapolis Democratic Sen. Scott Dibble and Hibbing Democratic Rep. Carly Melin soon after the House passed a medical-marijuana proposal on Friday.

05/09/2014

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Senate Votes To Equate E-Cigarettes To Smoking

Minnesota senators have voted for a stringent set of electronic cigarette standards that would make their use unacceptable in any place regular tobacco is disallowed. The approach endorsed Thursday goes further than a House companion bill, so the two measures must be reconciled for any e-cigarette regulations to become law. A move to pare back the indoor air restrictions in the Senate bill failed on a 35-28 vote.

05/08/2014

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Minnesota Senate Passes Medical Pot Legislation

The Minnesota state Senate passed a bill Tuesday that would legalize marijuana for medical purposes.

05/06/2014

Brew, Bottles, Booze, Alcohol,

Minnesota Senate Defeats Sunday Booze Sales Bid

Stock up on beer, wine and liquor on Saturday. The Minnesota Senate soundly defeated a repeal of the state’s law barring liquor stores from being open on Sundays. The chamber voted in favor of allowing craft beer tap rooms to sell growlers for takeaway on Sundays, but then the bill got pulled from debate.

05/06/2014

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Minnesota Medical Pot Bill Goes To Senate Floor

A bill to legalize medical marijuana is headed to the Senate floor after passage by the Finance Committee. The committee passed the bill 14-7 on Monday after adding a few wrinkles to the legislation.

05/05/2014

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Talking Points: Differences In House & Senate Medical Marijuana Bills

Bills legalizing medical marijuana could be voted on in both the Minnesota House and Senate this week, but the House and Senate versions are significantly different. That has led to disagreements among supporters that some say threaten passage of any type of bill.

05/04/2014

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Minnesota Medical Pot Rift Could Threaten Bill

A rift among Minnesota supporters of allowing the use of marijuana for medical purposes could make it harder to push legalization through the legislature this year. Committees in both the House and Senate were debating competing legislation Friday. A Senate panel stripped the option of smoking marijuana as medication from its bill on Thursday. But the House version is even more limited in how the drug may be accessed.

05/02/2014

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