GOP, DFL leaders comment on budget talks

Republican House and Senate leaders say they still want to avoid a state government shutdown, and they think they are close to reaching a budget agreement with DFL Governor Mark Dayton.

But the start of that shutdown is now just hours away. So, GOP leaders are urging Dayton to call a special session now to allow them to begin working on some of the budget bills while broader negotiations continue. House Speaker Kurt Zellers, R-Maple Grove, said a shutdown is not necessary and would be bad for Minnesota…

“Let’s get the job done,” Zellers said. “Let’s not shut down government. Let’s pass the bills where we’re close.We can come back and finish the couple of other ones that were maybe still not quite on. But it’s time to call us back. It’s getting too close to the end. Let’s get to work. Let’s get our job done and let’s make sure Minnrsotans are ready for the Fourth of July weekend.”

Dayton has consistently said he will not call a special session until a complete budget deal is reached.

Senate Minority Leader Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook, said he remains optimistic about the negotiations.

“Well, we’ve been here pretty continuously for the last weeek, since Friday morning,” Bakk said. ” We’ve had a lot of good discussions with the Republicans, and I do think the opportunity for a global agreement tonight that would prevent a shutdown is within reach.”

  • danno

    Until we sweep out the no tax pledgers, this kind of thing will keep happening. To attempt to serve with blinders on as far as tax revenue is concerned, is to be a non-participant in the tough decisions one should have to make in the legislature. It seems that unwillingness to make those decisions should disqualify one from being elected. It also seems that refusing to make those decisions is an abdication of the duties of the office, and should be grounds for removal.