(This post has been updated)
Three DFL state senators and three House Republicans will take the lead for their respective caucuses in plotting legislation for a possible special session that Gov. Mark Dayton wants to convene in January.
Dayton wants lawmakers to meet ahead of the regular session on March 8 in order to deal with three issues: expired unemployment benefits for Iron Range mine workers; income and employment disparities facing communities of color in the state; and compliance with the federal Real ID requirements.
Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook, and House Speaker Kurt Daudt, R-Crown, have each tapped three colleagues to lead working groups on each of those issues.
Sen. David Tomassoni, DFL-Chisholm, and Rep. Tom Hackbarth, R-Cedar, will spearhead the working group on Iron Range unemployment.
Sen. Bobby Joe Champion, DFL-Minneapolis, and Rep. Jim Knoblach, R-St. Cloud, will head up the racial disparities effort.
Sen. Scott Dibble, DFL-Minneapolis, and Rep. Peggy Scott, R-Andover, will run the Real ID group.
The working groups have a tentative plan to start meeting on Jan. 7, Bakk wrote in a letter this week to Senate Republican Leader David Hann. Bakk said he is seeking additional volunteers from his caucus to participate and asked Hann to do likewise.
Dayton told the Associated Press on Thursday that he wants a firm yes or no from legislative leaders by next Friday on whether they are willing to embark on the special session.