The confusion over whether raises for Gov. Mark Dayton's cabinet will kick in automatically July 1 continues.
It's been the subject of considerable back-and-forth since a deal was crafted last week by legislative leaders and Dayton about the controversial raises, some of them as much as about $35,000, for the governor's commissioners.
The deal, which is wending its way through the legislative process, would entail the Legislature taking back authority to set commissioner pay July 2, delaying the raises until (at least) July 1 and trimming a few agency budgets for the raises paid out so far this year.
The question is whether the raises kick in automatically July 1 (the day before the Legislature gets authority back over commissioner pay) or whether Dayton would have to affirmatively grant the raises.
Either way, July 1 will offer Dayton a choice, but a more difficult one if he has to choose affirmatively to give the raises, if indeed that's what he wants to do. If, instead, they kick in automatically on July 1, he would simply do nothing.
House Speaker Kurt Daudt, R-Crown, said he believes Dayton would have to make the affirmative choice to give the raises, and that House Republicans would try to persuade the governor not to do so.
Last week, Minnesota Management and Budget said that the raises kick in automatically.
Today, a spokesman for MMB said it's now uncertain: "We are looking at the current language and will make a determination on what it means -- if it is passed into law. It's not completely clear."
The deal on pay raises is attached to a stopgap spending bill that passed the House last week and will have a conference committee hearing today at the earliest.