Minnesota’s legislative leaders have agreed to a public works funding bill nearing $1 billion. But Gov. Tim Pawlenty wants to limit it to something closer to $725 million, a difference that could prove to be an interesting topic at budget meetings of the governor and legislative leaders.
If you thought state budgets were in bad shape last year, just wait: 2010 promises to be brutal for lawmakers — many facing re-election — as they scramble to find enough money to keep their states running without raising taxes.
It is a conservative candidate’s dream: the chance to accuse a judge of taking over powers that should be left to legislators and governors.
Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, a probable 2012 Republican presidential candidate, enjoyed that opportunity when Judge Kathleen Gearin ruled that he violated the state constitution last summer in making budget cuts.
When he announced he will appeal, Pawlenty warned there now is a danger that the state budget “will be run out of the courthouse.”
In coming months, Democrats are likely to drill home the word "unallotment" so all Minnesotans hear that Gov. Tim Pawlenty unilaterally cut the state budget, and Democrats will point out that occurred with support of other Republicans. It is the beginning of the 2010 election season.
'Unallotment’ particularly hits local governments, health care, colleges becomes state’s largest ever
Pawlenty’s cuts equal nearly $736 million, which along with a $1.8 billion delay in state payments to schools make up most of the $2.7 billion he needed to balance the state budget.
Crookston teachers gave back $70,000 in staff development money Tuesday, hoping the concession would save a teaching job. But, given recent news out of St. Paul, Superintendent Wayne Gilman said he can’t guarantee that happening. In fact, further cuts will be necessary if the rumblings in the Legislature play out.
The El Paso County, Calif., clerk and recorder's office stopped answering telephones in three offices last month. The change was ordered by county clerk Bob Balink, who was forced to lay off 19 staffers late last year.
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