Budget talks to resume this afternoon

Dayton comments from tommy scheck on Vimeo.

Michel, Dean comment from tommy scheck on Vimeo.

DFL Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican legislative leaders met behind closed doors this morning for about an hour and 15 minutes, but there were apparently no breakthroughs.

Both sides continue their self-imposed “cone of silence” regarding negotiation specifics.

“It was a constructive meeting,” Dayton said as he returned to his Capitol office. We still have our differences.”

Dayton said the talks would resume at 2:00 p.m., with a focus on the Health and Human Services area of state spending. He said negotiators would be leaving later in the afternoon to attend a memorial service for state Sen. Linda Scheid, DFL-Brooklyn Park, who passed away earlier this month.

Republicans had little else to add.

“We had a good meeting, said Senate Deputy Majority Leader Geoff Michel, R-Edina. “We hope to be able to provide you guys with more of an update about mid-afternoon.”

This was the fifth consecutive day of private talks. A state government shutdown is set to begin Friday if there’s no budget agreement in place.

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