Updates from the Government Relations team are sent periodically during the legislative session
Legislative Update - April 27, 2018
Both chambers pass higher education omnibus bill
 
The House and Senate passed the higher education omnibus bill off the respective floors last night. In the Senate, the higher education bill is included in the one large omnibus supplemental budget bill , and can be found in Article 16 of the bill. In the House, the higher education bill was included with the K-12 education omnibus bill in one large education bill .
 
In the Senate, two technical amendments were offered and adopted in the higher education article. A third amendment, offered by Sen. Greg Clausen, DFL-Apple Valley, was not adopted. This amendment would have required the Office of Higher Education, in consultation with other higher education stakeholders, to study and develop student success metrics by program. The entire Senate omnibus supplemental budget bill passed the Senate after almost 12 hours of debate by a vote of 34-31.
 
The House higher education and K-12 education omnibus bill passed with no higher education related amendments adopted. The bill passed by a vote of 94-29.
 
The next step is to work through the differences in the bills in conference committee.

Headed into conference committee, the Senate bill appropriates $1 million in one-time funding to Minnesota State for NextGen. The Senate bill also reallocates $1 million of surplus funding from the college occupational scholarship pilot program administered by the Office of Higher Education and appropriates $500,000 of that surplus in one-time funds to Minnesota State for workforce development scholarships. The remaining $500,000 is appropriated to the Office of Higher Education for the State Grant Program, Agricultural Educators Loan Forgiveness Program, Student Loan Debt Counseling and the Teacher Preparation Program Design Program.
 
The House bill on the other hand, appropriates funding differently. $4 million in one-time funds are appropriated to Minnesota State for campus support. The bill also appropriates $1 million to Metropolitan State University for a cyber security program. Similar to the Senate bill, the bill reallocates $1 million of surplus funding from the college occupational scholarship pilot program administered by the Office of Higher Education, but appropriates $500,000 of that surplus in one-time funds to the University of Minnesota for tuition relief. The remaining $500,000 is appropriated to the Office of Higher Education for the State Grant Program, Agricultural Educators Loan Forgiveness Program, and Student Loan Debt Counseling.
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At the Capitol

Friday, April 27

10:00 a.m.
House Ways and Means
Room: 200 State Office Building
Chair: Rep. Jim Knoblach
Agenda: HF4289 (Garofalo): Omnibus job growth and energy affordability finance bill
HF4099 (Knoblach): Omnibus state government, environment and agriculture finance bill
Committee Documents:
 
Monday, April 30
 
8:00 a.m.
House Job Growth and Energy Affordability Policy and Finance
Room: 10 State Office Building
Chair: Rep. Pat Garofalo
Agenda: HF4118 (Miller): Process to compensate businesses for loss of business opportunity from sale and closure of biomass energy plant established
Note: Informational only

10:00 a.m.
House in Session
 
11:00 a.m.
Senate in Session
 
3:00 p.m. or 15 minutes after session
Joint Meeting: Senate E-12 Finance and E-12 Policy
Room: 1150 Minnesota Senate Building
Chairs: Sen. Carla J. Nelson, Sen. Eric R. Pratt
Agenda: The Office of the Legislative Auditor Early Childhood Education Evaluation Report presentation

Tuesday, May 1
 
8:30 a.m.
Senate Finance
Room: 1200 Minnesota Senate Building
Chair: Sen. Julie Rosen
Agenda: SF2991 (Weber): Real estate appraisal advisory board creation and duties prescribed (pending referral)
SF730 (Rosen): Opiate stewardship program, manufacturer registration fee, advisory council, and account establishment; prescription monitoring annual opiate registration fees and manufacturer license surcharge requirements; opiates quantity limit; appropriation.
 
Thursday, May 3

4:30 p.m.
Joint Meeting: Senate Higher Education Finance and Policy; House Higher Education and Career Readiness Policy and Finance
Room: 5 State Office Building
Chairs: Sen. Michelle Fischbach and Rep. Bud Nornes
Agenda: Meeting to nominate a University of Minnesota Regent for the 1st Congressional District to the Joint Convention of the Legislature
Important Links:
  • Most recent bill introductions related to higher education (compiled by Government Relations team) can be found HERE (updated April 27, 2018)
  • 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:
Jaime Simonsen –  Jaime.Simonsen@MinnState,edu
Bernie Omann –  Bernie.Omann@MinnState,edu
Jim Grathwol – J im.Grathwol@MinnState.edu
Melissa Fahning - Melissa.Fahning@MinnState.edu
Tina Firkus - T ina.Firkus@MinnState.edu