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Continued: Wrapup of the legislative session

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  • Last update: May 23, 2008 - 9:27 AM

If you are ... a Republican with too many toasts to offer, or too many sorrows to drown, you'll have two additional hours to imbibe during the National Convention in September. Bars will be allowed to stay open until 4 a.m. during that period if their metro-area city gives them the OK.

If you are ... tinting your car windows, you'll need a doctor's prescription to show that you need to reduce light coming in for medical reasons, part of an effort to make traffic stops safer for police.

If you are ... a fan of J. Bodewalt Lampe (and, hey, who isn't?), the Chatfield Brass Band and Music Lending Library is still there for you. The brunt of many jokes and a Tim Pawlenty radio tirade, the little music library lost out on $400,000 for improvements when the money was vetoed from the state bonding bill. But the library, which has collected and cataloged more than 5,000 pieces of sheet music, has gone back to doing what it does best. It is still open Monday through Wednesday.

If you are ... the owner of a Chevy Tahoe, or anything else that gulps gas, you need to hire a better lobbyist. The first increase in the state gas tax in 20 years will add 5 1/2 cents to a gallon of gas by fall.

If you are ... Carol Molnau, be thankful you have another job to fall back on. The Senate removed Molnau as state transportation commissioner following widespread criticism of her department. She remains the state's lieutenant governor.

If you are ... the owner of a public swimming pool or spa, you have to inspect your drain covers daily. The safety inspections are in response to the death of young Abigail Taylor, who had part of her intestinal tract ripped out by the suction from an uncovered drain.

If you are ... a survivor of the Interstate 35W bridge collapse, the state has set aside $38 million to compensate you. But individual awards, except for the most severe cases, are capped at $400,000.

If you are ... feeling sorry for the Mall of America (and hey, who isn't?), put that thought on hold. A revised proposal still gives the mall a large public subsidy package for its second phase, but forces shoppers, diners, drinkers and motel guests in Bloomington to pay for it.

If you are ... wondering when surrogate mothers will face tougher state regulations, you'll have more time to wonder. A proposal to require that surrogate mothers be at least 21, be the parent of at least one child and have a mental health evaluation failed.

If you are ... tired of "problem properties" in Brooklyn Center, so is the state. Properties in the city with a high number of police calls have to participate in a crime-free multi-housing program in order to get tax benefits.

If you are ... a moped driver and feeling a lack of respect, you'll be exempt from having to pay a wheelage tax -- just as motorcyclists are.

If you are ... still confused over what state fiscal disparities money is (and, hey, who isn't?), you can pay attention to a new study that examines the 1970s-era program and whether it's meeting its goals.

If you are ... a worker who feels guilty about calling in sick to care for your ailing parents, better see a shrink. A move to let employees use their sick days to look after an ill or injured relative (other than their children) was vetoed.

If you are ... a high school sophomore feeling like it's time to blow this popcorn stand, grab your backpack and get going. You can still drop out of school at 16, since a provision to raise the compulsory school age to 18 was in a vetoed education policy bill.

If you are ... a governor who loves ice hockey, steer clear of Mariucci Arena for a while. The State's Biggest Hockey Fan vetoed an education bill that, among other things, would have made hockey the state sport.

If you are ... under 18 and the eager holder of a brand-new Minnesota driver's license, keep your mind on your driving (good advice for anyone, come to think of it). If the governor signs the transportation policy bill passed Friday, you'll have to wait six months before you can drive from midnight to 5 a.m. and a full year before you can take more than three of your teenage pals in your car.

If you are ... a proud Minnesotan who can say "sesquicentennial" three times fast, you'll be able to celebrate the state's 150th birthday with a special commemorative license plate (once the governor signs the transportation policy bill).

If you are ... a patrol cop, you'll have time to squeeze in that extra donut. An effort to allow you to stop and ticket motorists simply for not wearing their seat belts didn't make the final cut in the transportation policy bill.

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