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May 23, 2023

Minnesota Update

2023 Legislative Session Ends With Budget Complete
As the legislature entered the final days of the legislative session, the four caucus leaders and the governor’s office continued to wrestle over several unresolved budget issues including nursing home funding, taxes, and capital investment. At the same time, Senate and House conference committees pushed to finalize the last couple of budget bills. The bills included proposals centering on transportation, environment and natural resources, and health and human services.  In the end, leaders reached an agreement entering the final weekend that allowed for an orderly finish of the 2023 legislative session.

The final agreement centered on DFL majorities agreeing to $300 million in additional nursing home funding and significant support for capital investment projects in Republican-represented communities in exchange for enough votes from Republicans to pass the capital investment bill with the required 60% supermajority. Republicans agreed to limit debate on the outstanding budget bills to ensure a timely finish. For the first time in a decade, the legislature adjourned on time and did not need a special session to finish their work. 

Record-Setting $65 Billion Budget Passed; Other Priorities Cross Finish Line
Minnesota law requires the legislature to pass, and the governor to sign into law, a balanced state budget every two years. With a record surplus of $17.4 billion, the Minnesota Legislature grew state spending to record levels this year and made massive investments in K-12 education, human services, and transportation. Gov. Tim Walz has already signed the majority of the omnibus finance bills into law and is expected to sign the remaining omnibus bills tomorrow morning in a joint bill signing event.

In addition to the state budget, the Minnesota Legislature took up and passed numerous very high-profile policies and initiatives this session. Some of the most notable include:

  • The legalization of recreational cannabis and the expungement of many marijuana-related criminal records;
  • The creation of a new statewide paid family and medical leave program for Minnesota workers;
  • New employer requirements including requiring paid sick and safe time and the prohibition of most non-compete agreements;
  • Restoring voting rights to former felons;
  • Providing access to obtain a driver’s license regardless of immigration status;
  • New statutory protections for reproductive and gender-affirming health care.

In the coming weeks and months, Larkin Hoffman’s team will be breaking down and providing detailed insights into the legislation passed this session, including via the firm’s Employment & Labor Law Blog. 

The Larkin Hoffman Government Relations Team
    Margaret Vesel

Matthew Bergeron

Andrew Carlson
Peter Coyle
  Bill Griffith Grady Harn 
Megan Knight

  Peder Larson
Lydia Lodoen
Robert Long

  Gerald Seck    Brandan Strickland  
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