It is a busy weekend at the Capitol as we work to pass a second complete round of bills to shape the state’s next two-year budget and get them to the governor for enactment.
The Legislature is scheduled to adjourn at midnight Monday and we have been working hard with the governor and his commissioners to ensure the bills we send him are agreeable. There are a lot of moving pieces in play so I will circle back with details in a future letter. But, suffice to say, the House is focusing on top priorities such as education, transportation and health care.
Also, just as important, is tax relief – especially with a $1.65 billion state surplus. The House is continuing to advocate for tax relief that would benefit seniors on Social Security, farmers, college students, small-business owners and more.
On a separate note, one bill we did pass a Real ID bill which will allow Minnesota’s driver’s licenses and ID cards to comply with increased federal regulations. This has been an ongoing issue and the bill we passed and the governor enacted is a two-pronged approach. Real ID will be a simple opt-in program for those who wish to use their driver’s license to board airplanes and enter federal facilities including military bases, while others can exercise the option of continuing to use the current version which does not comply with Real ID.
The big thing is that, whether it’s visiting a military base or taking a family vacation, Minnesotans deserve the peace of mind that Minnesota’s state ID/driver’s license will allow them access.
Look for more news from the Capitol soon as we continue making progress on the budget.