- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 24, 2017

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - The Latest on the Minnesota Legislature’s work to pass a state budget (all times local):

7:30 p.m.

The Minnesota House and Senate have recessed their special session until noon Thursday, when they’ll regroup to try to pass the major parts of a massive $46 billion budget.

House Speaker Kurt Daudt expressed optimism after the House broke Wednesday night that lawmakers can get their remaining work done Thursday, even though it might take 12 to 18 hours.

Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka sounded a less optimistic note. He says they’re still working out the details of the broad budget agreement among legislative leaders and Gov. Mark Dayton. He says that agreement “went sour.” He declined to elaborate but said, “different people thought different things should be happening.”

The sides agreed in principle late Monday on a special session ending by 7 a.m. Wednesday. The deadline came and went.


3:30 p.m.

GOP Legislative leaders and Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton are searching for a way out of their impasse, after their plan for a brief special session went off the rails with plenty of work yet to be done on.

The two sides agreed in principle late Monday on a special session with a self-imposed deadline of 7 a.m. Wednesday, but the deadline came and went.

Both chambers reconvened Wednesday afternoon. The Senate approved a tax bill 44-20, while the House took up a transportation funding bill. The tax bill goes back to the House because it was amended to allow bars to stay open until 4 a.m. when Minneapolis hosts the Super Bowl next year.

It remains unclear how long it will take the Legislature to finish.


2:20 p.m.

Protesters from labor and other progressive groups filled the rotunda of the state Capitol to demand that Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton veto the bills that passed before the Legislature’s special session bogged down.

The demonstrators came from public employee unions, the teachers union Education Minnesota, the faith-based social justice group ISAIAH and others. They were upset, among other things, with an education funding bill that passed the House early Tuesday and awaits a vote in the Senate. They say it doesn’t provide enough money for public schools and fails to address a growing teacher shortage.

Other protesters were there to call for a $15-per-hour minimum wage. A Republican-backed bill that Dayton has threatened to veto would prevent cities from raising the minimum wage on their own.

One popular sign read, “#vetoeverything.”


11:25 a.m.

Minnesota’s legislative leaders are searching for how to salvage a special session to finish a two-year budget.

The Legislature missed another deadline Wednesday morning as they blew through a self-imposed goal to pass the remaining budget bills by 7 a.m. Lawmakers passed just five of 10 budget bills ahead of the constitutionally-mandated end of the regular session on Monday.

Gov. Mark Dayton and top Republicans met Wednesday morning and planned to continue discussing a path ahead in the afternoon. It was unclear whether the work would resume within hours, days or even weeks.

The House passed budgets for a tax bill and education spending early Wednesday morning. But that still leaves a mountain of work to finish assembling a $46 billion, two-year budget.


7:10 a.m.

The Minnesota Legislature blew through another deadline as it worked through the night in special session to finish a two-year budget.

After a self-imposed 7 a.m. deadline, still no passage. The Legislature was operating in a special session that began Tuesday just after midnight after the regular session produced only a small part of the $46 billion budget.

Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican legislative leaders then said they had tentative agreements on several remaining budget bills and that they believed they could wrap up their work by 7 a.m. Wednesday. That didn’t happen.

The two sides have agreed in principle to a budget that increases public school funding, cuts taxes by $650 million and provides $300 million for road and bridge repairs.


6:38 a.m.

Looks like the Minnesota Legislature will need yet another extension to finish its budget in a special session.

Lawmakers are still working Wednesday morning after meeting through the night on a $46 billion budget.

Gov. Mark Dayton agreed to call an overtime session immediately after the regular session ended Monday at midnight without a full budget in place. Despite action on one of five remaining budget bills early Wednesday, a self-imposed 7 a.m. deadline seems out of reach.

The two sides have agreed in principle to a budget that increases public school funding, cuts taxes by $650 million and provides $300 million for road and bridge repairs.

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