The Daily Digest: Community college on state and local agendas

Good morning!

In Minnesota

The DFL-controlled  Minnesota Senate and the Republican-controlled House have announced some of their top priorities for the 2015 session, and the first batch of bills, including a DFL proposal for tuition-free community college, underscores the stark political divide between chambers. (MPR News)

But perhaps the biggest issue lawmakers face is the sheer chaos of working from a building that’s in the middle of a massive renovation. (MinnPost)

A broad-based coalition of interests known as Move MN has proposed increasing transportation spending by $856 million a year over 10 years, aimed at improving the state’s transportation network. (Star Tribune)

National Politics

President Obama will announce Friday that the federal government will work with states to waive the first two years of community college tuition for some students. (USA Today)

Obama is facing opposition from fellow Democrats to one of his top priorities: winning the power to negotiate international trade agreements and speed them through Congress. (New York Times)

Longtime California Sen. Barbara Boxer will not run for reelection in 2016. Her decision means the loss of a major Democratic power player in the Senate and sets up what’s likely to be an intense race to replace her. (Politico)

With a thaw in U.S.-Cuban relations underway, a bipartisan group of lawmakers, including DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar, and a broad coalition of agricultural producers wants Congress to lift the five decades-old trade embargo on the Caribbean nation. (MPR News)