- Associated Press - Monday, April 17, 2017

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - Minnesota lawmakers are returning from a weeklong break with their eyes on the budget.

The Legislature was set to resume Tuesday after an Easter vacation put its work on pause. Their return marks the beginning of the rush to agree to a new, two-year budget that will likely exceed $45 billion.

But Republicans and Gov. Mark Dayton have lots of divides to bridge. The GOP is pursuing nearly $1 billion or more in tax cuts and some drastic cuts to government services. Dayton is aiming for a smaller suite of tax breaks while increasing state spending more on programs like a prized preschool initiative.

Lawmakers have some other priorities like finalizing a plan to comply with the federal Real ID law that threatens to disrupt Minnesotans’ flights starting next year.

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