Senate Republicans are acting to prevent end of session gridlock, aiming to get the legislature’s work done early for the first time in recent memory. Last week, House and Senate Republicans agreed to a third deadline of March 31 for bills to be passed out of finance committees. The new deadline front-loads the legislature’s work and leaves ample time on the calendar for Governor Dayton to agree to major budget bills.
“The legislature and governor have regrettably earned the reputation that we can’t work together to get things done in a timely manner. Frankly, I think Minnesotans are annoyed and embarrassed by the chaos they witness at the end of every session,” said Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka.
“This year, Republicans are committed to stopping last-minute lawmaking. Our plan will give the legislature and the governor plenty of time to hold civil, productive negotiations in full view of the public, rather than in the middle of the night behind closed doors.”
Historically, the legislative finance deadline has been set an average of 28 days prior to session adjournment. Republicans have agreed to almost double that window, allowing 52 days for additional discussion.