At The Capitol

by T.W. Budig ECM Capitol reporter The state’s first ever wolf hunting and trapping season is history. The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announced Wednesday (Jan. 2) wolf season will close in the last open zone at the end of shooting and trapping hours on Thursday (Jan. 3). “Our plan was to close the season [...]

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by T.W. Budig ECM Capitol reporter Sen. Ann Rest will be at center of the tax reform debate at the State Capitol. The New Hope Democrat is chairing the Senate Tax Reform Committee this coming legislative session. The assignment is timely, as Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton and legislative leaders cite tax reform as an important [...]

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This legislative session will be study in bulldozer politics. Within the bounds of the state constitution, Democrats can accomplish virtually anything they want.

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by T.W. Budig ECM Capitol reporter Area legislators were talking about politics and the new legislative session that begins on Jan. 8. “We’ll pick the pieces up and go on,” said Rep. Bob Dettmer, R-Forest Lake, of the aftermath of the election in which Republicans lost control of the statehouse. Dettmer argues against state tax [...]

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by T.W. Budig ECM Capitol reporter Rep. Kurt Daudt has entered State Capitol lore. In the final weeks of his first term, the Republican from Crown was elected House minority leader by his election-depleted caucus, a distinction not given to a first termer in more than a century. “To find one at the end of [...]

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by T.W. Budig ECM Capitol reporter Supporters of legalizing same-sex marriage hope to speedily pass legislation in the first weeks of the upcoming legislative session. That is, they hope to send a bill to Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton’s desk prior to the release of February budget forecast. “This kind of closes the loop of the [...]

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by Howard Lestrud ECM Publishers Political Editor As 10 selected electors of the Minnesota Electoral College were about to cast votes for president and vice president, a DFL state senator and a Republican state representative explained their plans to lead a bipartisan effort to join the National Popular Vote agreement. Sen. Ann Rest, DFL-New Hope, [...]

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To nudge a gas tax hike or other transportation tax increases through the legislature is going to take a coalition, Capitol insiders believe. And some question whether such a coalition currently exists. But recent transportation finance reports have raised hope among funding advocates. “I think we see this year as different,” said Executive Director Margaret [...]

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