AT THE CAPITOL: Lawmakers continue budget blitz - New York News

AT THE CAPITOL: Lawmakers continue budget blitz

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) -

It will be another long night at the state Capitol as Minnesota lawmakers work to pass the remaining budget bills before Monday's deadline.

There are only four big budget bills to go, but the largest of all centers on taxes. Negotiators in both the Minnesota House and Senate wrapped up their final draft this weekend, and the House is set to vote on it sometime on Sunday night.

THE TAX PLAN

The current bill contains $2 billion in tax increases, including a fourth-tier tax bracket for the top 2 percent of earners in Minnesota. Joint filers making more than $250,000, or single people making over $150,000 could see their income taxes jump.

Yet, the bill also provides property tax relief to the tune of $400 million.

The bill cannot be amended further and lawmakers must cast either an up or down vote at this point.

DAY CARE UNIONIZATION

The bill causing the most commotion at the Capitol over the weekend is one that would allow child care providers to unionize.

The legislation would affect personal care attendants who work with the elderly and disabled as well as those who provide day care for state-subsidized, low-income parents.

Throughout the weekend, child care providers on both sides of the issue have packed the Capitol to share their opinions with lawmakers.

The Senate passed the measure after a 17-hour debate last week, and the House debated it until 7:30 a.m. and again throughout the afternoon. The issue will likely come up again in the early morning hours on Monday.

WILL THEY FINISH IN TIME?

Lawmakers are currently on track to wrap up their session. On Sunday, the K-12 education bill and the transportation bill both passed and are now on their way to Gov. Mark Dayton.

All that remains are the tax and state budget bills, but there may be an effort to resurrect a bonding bill that includes renovations for the Capitol building on Monday.

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