The Legislature needs to wrap up business for the session by 11:59 p.m. Sunday and we anticipate it being a working weekend at the Capitol.
The large surplus in state coffers made this seem more like a regular budget-setting session, but the reality is that there is nothing that absolutely needs to be done because the state already is fully funded for the biennium.
Work in both chambers on major bills (additional spending because of the surplus) was wrapped up last week. Now, conference committees are in the process of attempting to reach agreement on the large spending differences in most of those bills. For the most part, spending contained in House bills far outweighs that which is in Senate versions.
An example is the drought relief bill passed many weeks ago in both chambers. The House version contains an additional spending item for the DNR for tree planting that is not contained in the Senate bill. That one item has pretty much stalled agreement on getting financial relief to farmers affected by last year's dry weather.
Watch for more from the Capitol soon as we make our way to the end of the session. I continue advocating for meaningful tax relief and hope we are able to get the House majority to get on board as well.