ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – The Minnesota Legislature has ended its special session after passing a $48 billion budget to fund state government for the next two years. The House and Senate passed the last of their budget bills Saturday morning and adjourned around 7 a.m.
The finish was messy and long negotiations behind closed doors stirred up indignation. But Gov. Tim Walz and Minnesota legislative leaders found a way to work together for deals on taxes, spending and policy to finish the essential work of the 2019 session.
The Democratic governor from Mankato rolled into office cheerleading his vision of “One Minnesota” and argued for new taxes to pay for it.
In the end the leaders split their differences over taxes and spending, and dropped most of the controversial policy proposals that went too far for the other side to accept such as gun control.
Democrats gave up the gas tax hike they wanted for transportation, while Republicans swallowed a permanent extension of a tax on health care providers that they hated.
Democrats secured new money for education and preserved funding for health care programs, while Republicans blocked proposed tax increases and secured a modest but permanent income tax cut for middle class Minnesotans.
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