Good morning, and welcome to Thursday. It seems like this week is going quickly. Here’s the Digest.

1. Daudt says gun bills may still pass this session. Republican House Speaker Kurt Daudt revealed Wednesday that there have been behind-the-scenes talks for some time about possible compromise legislation on gun control. He didn’t rule out action on gun measures before the session concludes in a few weeks. “I hope that there is. I think there will be. I think there can be. I don’t know what that looks like yet.” Daudt said he has had limited personal involvement in the discussions and was guarded about exactly what is being talked through. “Solutions that will really help reduce putting guns in the hands of potentially dangerous criminals. I think we all share that goal. I know those conversations are happening. I expect, or I hope those conversations can be fruitful, and we can find legislation that can get the support of the Legislature.” Daudt’s comments came after Rep. Erin Maye Quade, DFL-Apple Valley, ended a 24-hour sit-in on the House floor aimed at highlighting a lack of action this year on gun control legislation. And the gun issue is due to come up on the Senate floor today in the form of amendments offered by DFL Sen. Ron Latz. (MPR News)

2. State House changes sexual harassment policies. People who interact with state representatives — including constituents, lobbyists and members of the media — now have an avenue to address complaints of harassment and discrimination by elected officials and legislative staff. The Minnesota House on Wednesday made the first change in a decade to its harassment policies, joining a number of other states that have added protections for third parties and the lawmakers and staff who interact with them. The new rules apply to actions by or against House members and their employees, both when they are at the Capitol or participating in legislative business in the community. “I don’t view this as necessarily the end of the process … We need to take action now, get a good start and let our staff have additional time to find out if there’s additional things that we should be doing,” said House Majority Leader Joyce Peppin, R-Rogers, who led a subcommittee that came up with the changes. (Star Tribune)

3. Dayton comments on judge’s ruling on pipeline route. Gov. Mark Dayton said he doesn’t see “any viable way” for Enbridge Energy to build its replacement Line 3 oil pipeline along its current route, as a judge recommended earlier this week. Line 3 currently runs through two tribal lands in northern Minnesota: the Leech Lake and Fond du Lac reservations. Enbridge wants to replace the aging pipeline along a new route that avoids the reservations in part of a plan that’s reaising growing opposition from environmentalists and tribes, among others. Administrative law Judge Ann O’Reilly issued a non-binding recommendation on Monday that Minnesota regulators should approve the pipeline, but only if it runs along the current route and not Enbridge Energy’s preferred new path. The governor said he is not taking a position on the issue until the Public Utilities Commission decides whether to give Enbridge its blessing to construct the Line 3 replacement. But he said the judge’s recommendation doesn’t seem feasible. “I don’t see any viable way that that could be attempted or should be attempted going through the two tribal lands,” Dayton said. “And given their adamant position they’re against anything like that, I don’t see how that’s viable.” (MPR News)

4. Supreme court hears arguments on cameras in the courtroom. The Minnesota Supreme Court is considering whether a short-term experiment in allowing cameras in courtrooms for sentencing in criminal cases should become a permanent policy. An advisory panel that studied the three-year-long pilot project concluded late last year that cameras should continue to be allowed. Now, the court is deciding if it should follow that recommendation, end or expand the program — and still taking feedback from attorneys, media organizations and others with a stake in the decision. On Wednesday, the justices listened for an hour as members of those groups made their case, some for and some against cameras in the courtroom. Attorneys and a sexual-assault survivors group argued that photos and video of courtroom action threatens victims’ privacy and potentially biases the public against people involved in court matters. Representatives from media outlets and an open-government group, meanwhile, said Minnesota’s courtroom camera polices are far less transparent than those of most other states and in need of an update. (Star Tribune)

5. Noor signals he’ll plead not guilty. Attorneys for former Minneapolis police officer Mohamed Noor filed a court document Wednesday saying that the officer intends to plead not guilty on charges filed against him in the shooting death of Justine Ruszczyk last July. Noor was charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter last month in the killing of Ruszczyk, known professionally as Justine Damond. She’d called 911 to report what she thought was an assault in the alley behind her home in Minneapolis on July 15. Prosecutors say Noor fatally shot Ruszczyk through the open driver’s side window after she approached the squad car from behind. Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said when he announced charges that there was “no evidence that Officer Noor encountered a threat, appreciated a threat, investigated a threat or confirmed a threat that justified his decision to use deadly force.” The court document filed Wednesday also states that Noor intends to present self-defense and reasonable force defenses against the charges. A hearing is set for May 8. Noor’s attorney Thomas Plunkett declined comment. (MPR News)

The tax chair in the Minnesota Senate is proposing that tax reductions be triggered automatically when there are budget surpluses.

Sen. Roger Chamberlain, R-Lino lakes, presented his bill Wednesday to the Senate tax committee.

Under the measure, the state revenue commissioner would be required to reduce the income tax rate and corporate tax rate by one-tenth of 1 percent if the November economic forecast projects an adequate surplus.

Chamberlain said 11 states have similar tax triggers in place.

“I think it’s a reasonable, rational, conservative way to go about this, and it’s good for the state,” Chamberlain said.

Business groups like the proposal. Representatives of the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce and the Minnesota Business Partnership spoke in support of the bill.

But Paul Cumings, tax policy manager at the Minnesota Department of Revenue, warned the trigger could put future budgets in jeopardy. He also said it would take decision-making power away from legislators.

“Legislators may want to prioritize making sure students will have the resources they need rather than a small reduction in tax rates,” Cumings said.

After the hearing, Chamberlain said the proposal will be included in the larger Senate tax bill that he plans to roll out on Monday or Tuesday.

Chamberlain declined to offer other details about the bill or how it compares to the House tax proposal.

“We have a few things in there that will be different, but not as much as I think I would desire or that the people need,” he said.

Good morning, and welcome to Wednesday. Here’s the Digest.

1. House Republicans put their tax bill on fast track. With less than a month to go in session, Republican lawmakers were still short on specifics of how their tax plans would work. The Senate GOP has still not released a proposal, while House Republicans couldn’t say specifically who might pay less — or more — under their bill. Despite their best efforts, House Tax Committee Chairman Greg Davids and House Research analysts confirmed some 180,000 taxpayers would likely see a larger tax bill next year. “We’re not going to be able to get everything put back the way it was because we are a high-tax state,” Davids said. While the House plan cuts the tax rate in the second bracket, that could be offset for some earners by the loss of lucrative tax deductions on work-related expenses, charitable deductions and property loss expenses from fires and some other natural disasters. Minnesota Department of Revenue Commissioner Cynthia Bauerly said the House proposal would give businesses larger tax cuts over people. “Unfortunately, this bill, like the federal tax law passed last year, provides more for businesses than for working Minnesota families when it comes to the rate reduction,” she told lawmakers Tuesday. (AP)

2.  Lawmaker stages sit-in over gun legislation. A DFL lawmaker is holding a 24-hour sit-in on the Minnesota House floor to protest the lack of action on gun legislation this year. State Rep. Erin Maye Quade began the protest Tuesday morning. Several Democratic colleagues and one suburban Republican joined at the start to share stories of Minnesotans who were fatally shot. Maye Quade is a first-term lawmaker from Apple Valley. She hopes to call attention to the need for stronger gun restrictions after bills stalled out earlier in the session. Maye Quade and others are calling for expanded background checks and a legal path for family members or police to temporarily restrict a loved one’s gun access. (MinnPost)

3. Which party can claim the F and the L? Four Republican state lawmakers have formed an informal caucus to discuss rural issues, but the name and logo they’re using have seriously irked the Minnesota Democratic Farmer Labor Party, more commonly known as the DFL. The GOP lawmakers call their project the Republican Farmer Labor Caucus, or RFL. Their logo is strikingly similar to the DFL logo. Rep. Jeremy Munson, R-Lake Crystal, is one of the RFL instigators. “It was intended to highlight how the Republicans are out there fighting for farmers, and that Democrats, even though they have ‘farmer’ in their party name, actually aren’t out there supporting farmers,” Munson said. Munson, along with House colleagues Rep Jeff Backer, Rep. Jason Rarick and Rep. Tim Miller, received a cease and desist letter Monday from Charles Nauen, a lawyer representing the Minnesota DFL, who demanded they stop using the logo. Nauen said the name and the logo are confusing to the public. “If you continue such use despite this notification, we will consider all available legal means to protect the marks and goodwill of the Minnesota DFL Party,” Nauen wrote. (MPR News)

4. Court will consider camera policy. The Minnesota Supreme Court will hold a public hearing Wednesday on whether it should make permanent a pilot project that has allowed news cameras in criminal courtrooms in limited circumstances. Media groups say cameras promote transparency and public access to legal proceedings. But opponents, including the Minnesota State Bar Association, say cameras can make victims and witnesses reluctant to testify. The court authorized the pilot project in 2015. It allows audio, video and still-photo coverage in criminal proceedings after the defendant is convicted or pleads guilty, such as sentencing hearings. Still prohibited are sexual assault and domestic violence cases, and statements by victims unless they consent. Cameras aren’t allowed earlier during a trial except in rare circumstances. (AP via Star Tribune)

5. Now we’re stuck with our real sports teams. A bill to recognize daily fantasy sports betting sites in Minnesota as games of skill not as gambling went down Tuesday to a surprise and resounding defeat. The bill would have given the sites more legitimacy and subjected them to some regulations, including registration fees and fines for various violations. But opponents argued fantasy sports is gambling by another name and would support an industry where they say insiders do better than the typical player. Rep. Steve Drazkowski, R-Mazeppa, questioned the motivations behind the bill, saying no constituents had asked him to support it. “And the reality is this is full of swamp water,” he said. “We have moneyed interests bringing this forward to support their future and they’re going to fence out everyone else.” The bill failed on a 74-48 vote only two years after a similar version passed off the floor with 100 votes behind it only to stall in the Senate. Legislative leaders seldom bring bills to the floor that lack the votes to pass. (MPR News)