Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.
- Member for
- 5 years 6 months
Young Minnesota drivers should face limits on their driving, representatives decided Thursday. The overall transportation bill that contains the provision passed 82-44. For the first six months a youth has a driver's license, only one passenger 20 years old or younger, unrelated to the driver, can be in the vehicle. Also during that first sixth months, the young person only may drive between midnight and 5 a.m. to and from work and school. "No double dating for sophomores under this bill," Rep.
ST. PAUL - Some Minnesota homeowners will get a property tax break funded by other homeowners if state House Democrats get their way. And local governments would get a $53 million boost at the expense of multi-national corporations. "More will benefit than pay in," Rep. Paul Marquart, DFL-Dilworth, said Monday as he announced the proposal. All homeowners who pay more than 2 percent of their income in property taxes would benefit, said Marquart, House property taxes chairman.
ST. PAUL - Gov. Tim Pawlenty's Monday budget-balancing offer did not go as far as Democrats who control the Legislature wanted. "We were hoping for a fast polka," House Majority Leader Tony Sertich, DFL-Chisholm, said. "But we are having a slow waltz." Pawlenty suggested cutting in half the amount of money he would take from the Health Care Access Fund to balance the budget -- $125 million.
ST. PAUL - A federal highway administrator honored for his work following the Minneapolis bridge collapse becomes Minnesota's new transportation commissioner next week. Tom Sorel brings "an established record of transportation leadership," Gov. Tim Pawlenty said Monday in announcing Sorel's appointment. Sorel has spent three years as head of the Minnesota Federal Highway Administration office and won a federal honor for his division's response to the Aug.
ST. PAUL - Legislative leaders pledge to do what they can to protect rural Minnesota air service as Northwest Airlines becomes part of the world's largest air company. Gov. Tim Pawlenty, however, said there is little the state can do to mold the new Delta Air Lines, which will swallow Northwest if federal authorities approve.
Under the watchful eye of Minnesota Twins baseball great and Cuba native Tony Oliva, the Minnesota House approved a resolution asking the federal government to end a trade ban with Cuba. However, despite the overwhelming 86-9 favorable vote, many Republicans refused to vote as a protest of Cuba's human rights history. Rep. Bud Heidgerken, R-Freeport, said others have worse human rights violations.
ST PAUL - Iron Range lawmakers and Gov. Tim Pawlenty have reached a compromise to fund a miners' cancer deaths study. Pawlenty could sign a bill next week appropriating $4.9 million so the University of Minnesota can study why 58 people connected to Iron Range mines have died of mesothelioma. The compromise allows the state to use a different fund than originally proposed, a fund acceptable to Pawlenty. "Gov.
The House unanimously approved a bill aiding cattle farmers in an area of northwestern Minnesota where cattle are infected with bovine tuberculosis. The bill establishes a zone in the area where 11 cattle herds have been affected by TB. It also authorizes a $500-per-animal state payment for cattle within that zone.
ST. PAUL - A mega-airline could be a mega-problem or a mega-opportunity for the Upper Midwest. It all depends upon who analyzes a planned merger that would create the world's largest airline. "Fewer flights, more expensive flights, more expensive airplanes and more stops in between." That is the summary of a planned Northwest Airlines-Delta Air Lines merger by Alfie Marcus, professor of strategic management and organization at the University of Minnesota.
ST. PAUL - Capital city legislators, the St. Paul mayor and other leaders mounted a campaign against Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty in recent days, hoping that blasting him will somehow convince him to accept a second public works funding bill that restores some of their projects he vetoed. One Web news headline explained how St. Paul leaders felt: "Pawlenty to St. Paul: Drop Dead." Pawlenty removed St. Paul-related projects from the construction bill, such as a passenger rail connection between St.