Negotiations over one of the largest areas of the state budget are set to get underway, as members of the Health and Human Services conference committee have been appointed. Sen. Michelle Benson (R-Ham Lake) will lead a group of five senators – including Sen. Jim Abeler (R-Anoka), Sen. Karin Housley (R-St. Mary’s Point), Sen. Paul Utke (R-Park Rapids), and Sen. Tony Lourey (DFL-Kerrick) – who will work with House members on an agreement.
“Health and Human Services is one of the biggest issues of the state budget, with a significant portion of it impacting our most vulnerable citizens,” said Sen. Benson. “It’s a big responsibility, but the senators and representatives on our conference committee are committed to finding an agreement that helps the Minnesotans who need it most. I am looking forward to starting our work.”
House members appointed to the conference committee include Rep. Matt Dean (R-Dellwood), Rep. Joe Schomacker (R-Luverne), Rep. Tony Albright (R-Prior lake), Rep. Debra Kiel (R-Crookston), and Rep. Jennifer Schultz (DFL-Duluth).
The conference committee will be tasked with working out the differences between House and Senate versions of the bill, and finding a compromise with the governor’s office.
The Senate has posted a spreadsheet detailing the differences between the House proposal, the Senate proposal, and the governor’s recommendations.
The conference committee met for the first time April 19 to walk through the differences between the bills. The next meeting has not yet been announced.