Updates from the Government Relations team are sent periodically during the legislative session
Legislative Update: February 28, 2019

February economic forecast weakens since November
 
Earlier today, Minnesota Management and Budget (MMB) released the February economic forecast. While the state still has a budget surplus, the projected balance for the upcoming biennium is $1.052 billion, $492 million less than the November forecast projection of a $1.54 billion surplus.
 
According to state budget officials, there is “slower projected economic growth and lower observed collections compared to prior estimates.” State budget officials also noted that the "trend of slower growth continues into the planning horizon with projected spending growth outpacing forecast revenue growth into FY 2022-23."


The February forecast is used by lawmakers and Governor Tim Walz to craft a two-year state budget. The governor submitted his budget recommendation last week based on the November forecast, recommending $51.6 million in new funding for Minnesota State. Lawmakers and the Governor have until May 20 to put together the 2020-2021 budget.


The complete details of the February forecast can be found on the MMB web site.

____________________________________________________

This Week at the Capitol


Thursday, February 28
 
8:00 a.m.
House Capital Investment
Room: 10 State Office Building
Chair: Rep. Mary Murphy
Agenda:
HF1080 (Xiong) St. Paul Third Street/Kellogg Boulevard bridge replacement funding provided, bonds issued, and money appropriated.
HF1068 (Howard) Richfield; 77th street underpass project funding provided, bonds issued, and money appropriated.
HF387 (Murphy) Minneapolis and Duluth; high-speed passenger rail funding provided, bonds issued, and money appropriated.
HF545 (Pinto) Riverview Corridor Transitway funding provided, bonds issued, and money appropriated.
HF528 (Fischer) Ramsey County; Rush Line Corridor Transitway funding provided, bonds issued, and money appropriated.
HF529 (Mahoney) Ramsey County; East Metro Rail Corridor funding provided, and money appropriated.
HF1493 (Hausman) Passenger rail infrastructure development funding provided, bonds issued, and money appropriated.
HF1179 (Wolgamott) St. Cloud Northstar Commuter Rail extension funding provided, report required, bonds issued, and money appropriated
HF1333 (Sauke) Rochester Graham Park Regional Event Center renovation and expansion funding provided, bonds issued, and money appropriated.

8:00 a.m.
House Jobs and Economic Development Finance Division
Room: 200 State Office Building
Chair: Rep. Tim Mahoney
Agenda:
HF 141 (Poppe) Port authorities; majority vote of commissioners required to approve real property sales and transfers.
HF 678 (Davnie) Job skills training for recently released inmates funding provided
HF 955 (Koegel) SciTechsperience program funding provided
HF 1088 (Xiong, J) Minnesota Alliance of Boys and Girls Clubs grant

9:45 a.m.
House Government Operations
Room: Basement hearing room State Office Building
Chair: Rep. Mike Freiberg
Agenda:
HF586 (Becker-Finn): Veteran suicide awareness day declared.
HF505 (Fischer): State flag design task force created.
HF1216 (Schultz): Duluth regional exchange district establishment authorized, state general sales tax exemption provided, advisory board created, powers and duties conferred, tax abatement and tax increment financing rules provided, local sales and use tax imposition authorized, bonds issued, and money appropriated.
HF987 (Richardson): Low-income student access to driver education programs expanded, driver education work group established, report required, and money appropriated.
HF1017 (Claflin): Women's Suffrage 100th Anniversary Commemoration Commission established, appointments provided, and money appropriated.
HF525 (Persell): Pupil transportation adjustment calculation modified, pupil transportation working group provided, and report required.
 
11:00 a.m.
Senate in Session

1:00 p.m.
Senate Higher Education Finance and Policy
Room: 15 Capitol
Chair: Sen. Paul T. Anderson
Agenda: Presentation from the Office of Higher Education regarding the Governor's budget recommendations
 
3:00 p.m.
Senate Agriculture, Rural Development, and Housing Policy
Room: 1150 Minnesota Senate Bldg.
Chair: Sen. Bill Weber
Agenda:
S.F. 1585-Rarick: Bioincentive program modification; account creation and appropriation.
S.F. 255-Johnson, M.: Beginning farmer tax credits eligibility modification.
S.F. 1446-Weber: Spark ignition motor fuel wholesalers and retailers technical assistance and technology promotion grants appropriation.
S.F. 1414-Weber: Agricultural, aquaculture, pesticide control, food handlers, dairy incentive programs, loan programs, soil, and agriculture basins provisions modifications.
S.F. 1346-Goggin: Farm-to-school program and appropriation.

3:30 p.m.
House in Session
 
Friday, March 1
 
10:00 a.m.
House Education Policy
Room: State Office Building Room 5
Chair: Rep. Cheryl Youakim
Agenda:
HF1204 (Pryor) - School sexual harassment and sex discrimination laws compliance required, training required, and money appropriated.
HF244 (Claflin) - School districts required to conduct radon testing.
HF491 (Demuth) - School employees, independent contractors, and persons in positions of authority who have sexual relationships with students penalties established.
HF1414 (Lippert) - Commissioner of education required to develop sexual health curriculum program, and report required.
HF1094 (Her) - Mobile food shelf grant program established, and money appropriated.
HF532 (Erickson) - Background checks required on all first-time teaching applicants, and mandatory reporting expanded.
HF1566 (Kunesh-Podein) - Substance misuse prevention instruction grant funding provided, report required, and money appropriated.
 
Monday, March 4

9:30 a.m.
House Education Policy
Room: State Office Building Room 5
Chair: Rep. Cheryl Youakim
Agenda:
HF491 (Demuth) - School employees, independent contractors, and persons in positions of authority who have sexual relationships with students penalties established.
HF1414 (Lippert) - Commissioner of education required to develop sexual health curriculum program, and report required.
HF1094 (Her) - Mental health education requirements amended.
HF1204 (Pryor) - School sexual harassment and sex discrimination laws compliance required, training required, and money appropriated.
HF532 (Erickson) - Background checks required on all first-time teaching applicants, and mandatory reporting expanded.
HF1566 (Kunesh-Podein) - Substance misuse prevention instruction grant funding provided, report required, and money appropriated.
 
1:00 p.m.
Senate Jobs and Economic Growth Finance and Policy
Room: 1150 Senate Building
Chair: Sen. Eric R. Pratt
Agenda:
Bureau of Mediation Services - Governor's Budget Recommendations.
Department of Employment and Economic Development - Governor's Budget
Recommendations
 
Tuesday, March 5
 
8:00 a.m.
House Jobs and Economic Development Finance Division
Room: 200 State Office Building
Chair: Rep. Tim Mahoney
Agenda:
HF 422 (Brand) Child care in rural Minnesota funding provided, and money appropriated (Informational Hearing Only)
HF 423 (Brand) Greater Minnesota child care facility grand program funding provided, bonds issued, and money appropriated (Informational Hearing Only)
HF 825 (Kotyza-Witthuhn) WomenVenture Grant to establish women run child care in low income urban areas: Pending Referral
HF 908 (Kotyza-Witthuhn) WomenVenture Business Training: Pending Referral
HF 1594 (Richardson) YWCA funding provided for job skills training in early childhood education, and money appropriated: Pending Referral

9:45 a.m.
House Government Operations
Room: Basement hearing room State Office Building
Chair: Rep. Mike Freiberg
Agenda: HF769 (Carlson): Public Employment Relations Board data modified, and money appropriated.
HF90 (Schultz) PENDING REFERRAL : Health care and home care bills of rights, home care licensing provisions, Office of Health Facility Complains duties and powers, house with services registration requirements, vulnerable adult consumer protection, and the Vulnerable Adults Act modified; assisted living title protection clarified; task forces established; and reports required.
HF70 (Kunesh-Podien): Task Force on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women created, annual report on violence against indigenous women and girls required, and money appropriated.
HF758 (Persell): Mississippi Headwaters Board jurisdiction over headwaters area ensured.
HF136 (Stephenson): Internet service providers servicing Minnesota customers and those under contract to the state or political subdivisions certain activities prohibited.
HF804 (Lesch): Data practices legislative commission expiration delayed, and money appropriated.
 
9:45 a.m.
Room: Capitol 120
Chair: Rep. Jean Wagenius 
Agenda:
HF1798 (Wagenius) - Energy; incorrect statute references corrected
HF1787 (Acomb) - University of Minnesota Board of Regents goals and benchmarks for renewable fuels transition establishment funding provided, and money appropriated
HF1788 (Acomb) - Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Board of Trustees establishment of goals and benchmarks for renewable fuels transition required, and money appropriated
HF1570 (Loeffler) - Green roofs task force established, report required, and money appropriated
Note: The committee will recess and reconvene at 4:30 in Capitol 120 if necessary.


5:00 p.m.
Room: TBA
Chair: Rep. Mary Murphy 
Agenda: TBA
I mportant Links
  • Bill introductions as of February 27, 2019 can be found HERE
  • Committee schedules can be found HERE
  • Many committee hearings and floor sessions are streamed live via the web or broadcast on television. More information and a schedule can be found HERE
Government Relations team:
Bernie Omann –  Bernie.Omann@MinnState,edu
Melissa Fahning - Melissa.Fahning@MinnState.edu
Tina Firkus - T ina.Firkus@MinnState.edu