The Daily Digest

Welcome to the Daily Digest, where the state still has a budget shortfall, officials aren’t saying how they’ll close the budget gap, and Minnesota firms lobby on the fiscal cliff.

Around Minnesota

Minnesota has a budget shortfall of $1.1 billion for the coming biennium. That number hasn’t budged since Minnesota Management and Budget released it’s previous forecast in March.

Here’s the report. It also shows that the state has a $1.3 billion surplus for the current biennium, which must be used to pay back the $2.4 billion owed schools.

Gov. Mark Dayton and legislative leaders have been mum on how they’re going to erase the projected deficit.

Dayton will be on MPR’s Morning Edition broadcast.

According to the forecast, cash for the Vikings stadium is not meeting expectations.

Education advocates want the Legislature to approve more pre-K spending.

And business leaders will push for more transit funding in the next legislative session.

Several environmental and conservation groups are suing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency over air pollution in Voyageurs National Park and Isle Royale.

In Washington

Minnesota firms have been lobbying on the fiscal cliff debate.

The House Republicans’ fiscal cliff plan hints at more military spending cuts.

House Speaker John Boehner has strong backing from his caucus.

Native American tribes are weighing in on the fiscal cliff debate.

Rep. Keith Ellison is among lawmakers who are saying Congress shouldn’t include changes to Social Security in its fiscal cliff plan. His claims about Social Security hold up, according to PoliGraph.

President Barack Obama warned Republicans not to agree to tax cuts now and demand more spending cuts during a future debate over raising the debt ceiling.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said that the administration is willing to go off the fiscal cliff if Republicans don’t agree to higher taxes on the wealthy.

ABC News reports that Rep. John Kline is blocking a bill that would protect children with disabilities from getting hurt at school over concerns about federal intervention.

Obama is asking for Hurricane Sandy disaster relief. It’s a big ask in the midst of a debate over how to solve the nation’s debt crisis, the New York Times reports.