ST. PAUL, MN—Rep. Sandy Layman (R-Cohasset) issued the following statement regarding the conclusion of the one day special session early Saturday morning.
“I’m very disappointed in the process that unfolded at the end of this year’s legislative session. Far too many decisions were made behind closed doors by a few people, which stripped the process of transparency and left the public and other legislators out of the loop,” said Layman. “That said, I’m glad both sides were able to work past stark differences in order to compromise on a budget agreement. I also appreciate the governor compromising and giving up some of the worst pieces of his plan. This allowed us to avoid a 20-cent per gallon gas tax increase, more expensive license tab fees, other transportation related taxes, nursing home cuts, and numerous highly controversial policies.”
The special session was called by Governor Walz after days of closed-door meetings with legislative leaders. Some conference committees did not adopt a single provision in a public setting, resulting in entire bills being decided privately. The largest budget bill was not publicly released until after 4PM—several hours after the special session had begun.
During the special session, House Republicans successfully negotiated changes that will enhance transparency next session, including a change to the House committee structure that will increase transparency and fix flaws in the structure Democrats implemented this year.