On May 17, 2021, the Minnesota Legislature adjourned without passing a two-year state budget. Earlier this morning, Governor Walz, Speaker Hortman and Majority Leader Gazelka announced agreement on joint budget targets, a preliminary step that allows each budget area to begin the work of negotiating specific budget items. A special session to pass budget bills will be required to prevent a full or partial shutdown of state government on July 1st.
Following adjournment, Senate DFL Leader Susan Kent (DFL-Woodbury) released the following statement:
“I am disappointed that we are at the end of the session and have not made more progress. We have a limited amount of time to do our work every year and, unfortunately, the Senate Republicans spent much of this session focused on criticizing the administration instead of working on a meaningful budget and legislation that would actually improve the lives of Minnesotans. Minnesotans deserve better,” said Leader Kent.
“While Minnesota families and communities are still working to recover from the pandemic, we had a lot of important solutions we could have been focusing on. In this time, we could have been working towards passing legislation to support working families and students, invest in clean futures, and policy that protects our democracy, rather than impeding access. We could have also held hearings and had discussions around the urgent need to address police reform. Instead, we are ending this session without a budget and will need to return for a special session to finish our work.”
“The budget targets that were released today by Governor Walz, Speaker Hortman, and Majority Leader Gazelka are a good step forward in the process. The initial targets appear promising for education and healthcare; however, there is still a lot of work to do around a number of important policy discussions, including needed police accountability measures. I look forward to working in a thoughtful and thorough way, and I urge that we do the work in a transparent process to finalize the finance and policy details.”