Deal on the Capitol

Tweet from Mary Lahammer: Sen Bakk on @tptAlmanac at the Capitol @tpt confirms Senate agreed to give up some space in renovated @mncapitol in deal just reached.

This means Bakk surrendered after being dealt a bad hand, or more precisely, dealing himself a bad hand with the new Senate office building, which will cost taxpayers more than $70 million and has become a political albatross. It was the source of endless negative mail pieces in last year's House election and probably many more in the next, this time launched against DFL senators. (The link will lead you to some lovely Coleridge.)

At 10 a.m., Gov. Mark Dayton will chair the Capitol Preservation Commission (5th Floor Conference Room, Veterans Service Building.) With the deal in hand, presumably the commission can approve the fourth and final stage of construction and get contracts signed by the Jan. 31 deadline, thus preventing delays and cost overruns.

Dayton will also meet with Lt. Gov. Smith, commissioners and staff throughout the day, plus a cabinet meeting. He will also provide remarks at the Minnesota Business Partnership board meeting. Closed press. In the evening, Dayton will host a reception at the residence for members of the Minnesota Legislature. Closed press. (Fly on the wall….)

Dayton proposed $30 million for the U medical school, Abby Simons reports. The hope is that this would restore the school to national prominence by adding back lost tenured faculty.

Must be nice to be governor during an economic recovery.

Senate is taking up SF1 flood relief and HF6 federal tax conformity today after a break for caucus. That means both will be on the governor's desk shortly.

House also in session. Here's today's complete schedule.

Legislative leaders released this year's deadlines: 1st Deadline: Friday, March 20 at midnight (deadline for committees to act favorably on bills in the house of origin); 2nd Deadline: Friday, March 27 at midnight (deadline is for committees to act favorably on bills, or companion bills, that met the first deadline in the other house); 3rd Deadline: Friday, April 24 at midnight (deadline is for the House Ways and Means and the Senate Finance to act favorably on major appropriation and finance bills.)

The Easter/Passover break will begin Saturday, March 28 and end Tuesday, April 7 at 8:00 a.m. (Miami?)

Save the Boundary Waters has events coming up. (Note to readers: When I post events it's not an endorsement; yesterday I posted a Cato event.)

Simons (quite a busy reporter yesterday) also reports on legislators' first initiatives to reform our child protection laws, which arose after a series of Strib stories.

Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges is headed to Aspen, Colo., later this month for a fellowship program that's meant to encourage bipartisan cooperation among the country's "rising political stars," Erin Golden reports.

(Nothing says serving the people like Aspen. They should do this event in Scranton; I implore you to check out that link for your morning laughter.)


Rep. John Kline, who chairs a committee with oversight of higher education, says no to Obama's free community college program, Allison Sherry reports.

Speaker Boehner invites Bibi to address Congress in rebuke to Obama Iran policy.

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