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Tag Archives: Greg Davids

On the tails, all budget proposals come up losers

At some point this year, whether it comes in time for the May 23 adjournment date or not, the Republican-controlled Legislature will strike a deal with DFL Gov. Mark Dayton that balances the 2012-13 general fund budget. But whether it will make good on a promise from all parties to end the state's longstanding structural deficit remains very much in doubt - and the signs so far are not good.

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Board plays a critical role in keeping GOP together

Former Republican Rep. Dave Bishop remembers sitting in the office of then-House Speaker Steve Sviggum, trying to calm him down. Sviggum was fuming, as Bishop recalls, because he had just been voted down on an issue by the executive board, a small group of GOP representatives that serve as caucus advisers to the speaker of the House of Representatives.

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HHS package still taking shape

The most important single word in the health and human services bills being considered by the GOP-controlled Legislature is "waiver." Both the House and Senate proposals - although markedly different - rely on significant cost savings achieved by obtaining a global waiver from the federal government to remake the state's Medicaid program. The House is looking to book $300 million in savings, while the Senate anticipates cutting costs by roughly $600 million through relief from federal Medicaid mandates.

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Can hemp grow jobs?

Although the issue of medical marijuana seems dead for the duration of Session 2011, one related issue is making its way through the legislative machinery. Industrial hemp is gaining momentum at the Capitol, even though a proposal on the subject appears destined for trouble in public safety committees.

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