The Legislature’s first deadline is in the books

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Under Minnesota law, “the Legislature shall establish by concurrent resolution deadlines for each regular session.” Deadlines help the Legislature narrow down the hundreds of bills introduced by lawmakers to proposals that have the best chance of becoming law. The first deadline passed on Thursday, March 22, which was the final opportunity for committees to act favorably on bills in their house of origin. The remaining deadlines are Thursday, March 29 and Friday, April 20.

This week, lawmakers took a hard look at a new supplemental budget proposed by Governor Dayton. The proposal reflects common priorities of all Minnesotans by investing in education, economic growth, more affordable health care, and tax cuts for hard-working people. Over the coming weeks, legislators in the house and senate will release their own budget proposals. The Legislature’s goal is to reach a compromise that is agreeable to lawmakers and the Governor.

On Thursday, the Legislature passed legislation to continue fixing MNLARS, the state’s new licensing and registration system. Everyone agrees that the system is not working for most people, but Republicans who control the Legislature have known about the problem for months and waited until the sixth week of session to pass a final bill. DFL senators have pushed for better customer service, better oversight, and better reporting requirements as a solution is implemented and will continue to do so.