Summer has officially begun, and the 2016 Legislative Session is officially over…or is it?
The blame game is in high-gear, with the Governor blaming the Legislature for sending him a tax bill that he said he could not sign due to a $100 million drafting error, and for not sending him a bonding bill or a funding package for transportation/transit projects.
The House Republicans are blaming the Governor for not signing the tax bill, despite agreement to fix the drafting error, and for demanding new spending after signing the supplemental budget bill.
Although the 2016 Legislative Session gaveled to a close on the constitutional deadline of May 23rd, Governor Dayton and Legislative Leaders continue to negotiate the terms of a potential Special Session that may address the “pocket-vetoed” tax bill, a bonding bill, and funding for transportation/transit projects.
July 1st seems to be likely, yet somewhat arbitrary, deadline for having a Special Session agreement. The omnibus tax bill would have had an effective date of July 1st, so if a Special Session occurred before the end of June, the Governor and legislators could frame it as a “no harm, no foul” situation.
An agreement could still be reached after July 1st, but it seems that the odds of that happening are small, with an election looming and every seat in the Legislature on the ballot.
Each day that goes by without an agreement makes the likelihood of a Special Session more unlikely. Legislators are turning their focus to the campaign trail, and Minnesotans are turning their attention to enjoying the summer weather.
What does all of this mean?
Get ready for an intense campaign season, as Republican and Democratic candidates for the Legislature put their spin on what happened (or didn’t happen) at the end of the session and, in particular, who is to blame.
** Coming Soon **
Watch for our comprehensive Minnesota REALTORS® 2016 Legislative Update publication. This publication will cover all of the issues REALTORS® should be aware of that were either passed and signed into law or were considered during the 2016 Legislative Session.
By-Paul Eger Vice President, Governmental Affairs and Ryan E. Hamilton, JD Associate Legal Counsel
The Minnesota REALTORS® is the largest professional trade association in the state with more than 17,000 members who are active in all aspects of the real estate industry.