1.) Gov. Mark Dayton will introduce his choice of running mate during a 10:00 a.m. rally with AFL-CIO members. The latest conventional wisdom points to chief of staff Tina Smith as the odds-on favorite, particularly after Sen. Katie Sieben, DFL-Newport, took her name out of the running late last week. Smith has a background that mixes corporate experience with public sector service, having worked for General Mills and former Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak. Should Dayton choose Smith to replace Yvonne Prettner Solon, the selection will be an interesting one: Smith is known as a trusted adviser to Dayton, and would likely expect to manage a larger portfolio than Prettner Solon, who complained of her limited role. One other name frequently floated as a running mate possibility is Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board (IRRRB) Commissioner Tony Sertich, though a male candidate choosing another man as his running mate would be out of step with trends over the last several decades.
2.) After months of considering a gubernatorial bid, Sen. Karin Housley, R-St. Marys Point, announced on Monday that she would not join the already crowded GOP field running against Gov. Mark Dayton. Housley broke the news in an interview with the Forest Lake Times, saying she had received encouragement to run for the state’s top office from “a number of people,” but had decided to stay in the Senate, where she was first elected in 2012. “We have real challenges with MNsure, out-of-control state spending and bringing more jobs to Minnesota, and those are things I am going to continue to work on,” she said. Housley’s decision means that only one rumored potential candidate, Sen. Julie Rosen, R-Fairmont, could still add a female voice to the GOP contest.
3.) The state Environmental Quality Board (EQB) has pushed back the date for its release of guidelines on regulating the silica sand mining industry, the Associated Press reports. The EQB had originally planned to set a model ordinance for local governments by Oct. 1, as prescribed in the statute passed during the 2013 legislative session. But an outpouring of public comment contributions, much of it from the state’s environmental activists, has since caused to delays in the board’s work finalizing its plan. The 2013 law was intended to help local governments deal with the potential fallout from the burgeoning frac sand business, including the possible option of enacting an extended moratorium on the practice.
COMINGS & GOINGS