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The Latest: Legislative budget heads for Dayton’s signature

February 23, 2018

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Latest on the Legislature’s vote to restore its operating budget (all times local):

6:20 p.m.

A bill to restore the Legislature’s operating budget is heading to Gov. Mark Dayton.

Dayton vetoed the $130 million in funding for the House and Senate last year, triggering months of court cases and forcing the Legislature to hobble into session running on emergency funds. Dayton wanted to rework costly tax breaks and other measures last year but eventually relented.

The Senate approved a bill restoring that money Thursday, following its passage in the House. Dayton has promised he’ll sign it.

It comes just two days into the new legislative session. House Speaker Kurt Daudt says legislative leaders and the governor want to put the episode behind them.

5:15 p.m.

The Minnesota House voted to restore the Legislature’s operating budget.

Thursday’s overwhelming vote approving the House and Senate’s $130 million budget started to bring a months-long battle with Gov. Mark Dayton to a close. It comes just two days into the legislative session.

The Senate was expected to follow suit Thursday evening. Dayton has promised to sign the bill.

Dayton vetoed those funds while signing the rest of a $46 billion state budget in May, prompting a legal battle that lasted months. The Minnesota Supreme Court eventually declined to overturn Dayton’s veto, forcing both chambers to run on reserve funds.

House Democrats tried and failed to force a separate vote ratifying new contracts with a 2 percent raise for the state’s 33,000 public workers.

3:30 p.m.

Minnesota’s Legislature is moving quickly to restore its budget.

Lawmakers were set to vote later Tuesday on the House and Senate’s nearly $130 million operating budget. It comes just two days into the new legislative session.

Gov. Mark Dayton vetoed those funds while signing the rest of a $46 billion state budget in May, prompting a legal battle that lasted months. The Minnesota Supreme Court eventually declined to overturn Dayton’s veto, forcing both chambers to run on reserve funds.

Restoring the full budget will finally end the drama between Dayton and the Republican-controlled Legislature.

But Democrats are upset at the parliamentary procedure Republicans used to bring the budget up for a final vote. That method prevents Democrats from trying to attach approval of new contracts for 33,000 state employees.

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