The so-called “cone of silence” over budget negotiations has cracked since talks collapsed Thursday afternoon and Minnesota headed into a state government shutdown.
In a news conference late Thursday evening, Gov. Mark Dayton revealed some of the latest offers made by the GOP majorities in an effort to reach a deal to solve the $5 billion budget deficit, including expanding the school shift by $700 million and an unspecified sum generated by borrowing against future proceeds of the state’s tobacco settlement. Dayton spokesman Bob Hume also revealed a slew of documents via Twitter on Friday morning, including a “confidential draft” of an early compromise offer that included policy provisions in a final deal.
“Its nine am, the Government is still shutdown because the GOP wanted to talk abortion, voter id and redistricting instead,” he tweeted, attaching a document titled “Compromise Offer to Governor Dayton from Minnesota Legislature.”
See the full document here.
The document, dated June 29 at 8 p.m., spells out terms of a compromise from the GOP majorities. New revenue in a deal would have been contingent on a special session Thursday to pass most of the budget bills and continue health and human services payments at current levels until a final bill could be drafted and passed by July 8, the document reads.
It also calls for various policy provisions to be included in the budget bills, including collective bargaining reforms and mandate relief in the education bill, cloning language and tuition caps in the higher education bill, a ban on taxpayer funds for abortions in the health and human services bill and photo identification at the polls in the state government budget bill.
GOP communications staffers tweeted that this document doesn’t represent the most up-to-date negotiations with the governor. Hume also posted a GOP offer to Dayton made the following day that included the tobacco money, school shift and a special session to pass a lights on bill, but did not list any policy provisions. He included a revised offer from Dayton’s administration raising the threshold on his upper-income tax hikes to $1 million. According to the Department of Revenue, that figure would affect a total of 7,700 taxpayers statewide.
See all of the documents here.