Rotunda Ramblings: Last Chance to Voice Ag Budget Needs to Legislators

The Minnesota Legislature is now out for Easter break, giving you the opportunity to discuss Minnesota’s budget and funding plans with your legislator in person before big decisions are finalized. Contact them now to set up a meeting!

The Minnesota Soybean Growers Association, as part of the Ag Coalition Ag research effort, is proposing funding for ag research to be increased to $39 million. This past week the House allocated a $9.5 million increase for agriculture finance, which does not come close to the $39 million requested. The Senate added $45 million to their division covering Ag finance. Those numbers will be negotiated in a conference committee. And you can still influence the outcome.

With the Easter break at hand many legislators use the break to make contact with their constituents. That is an opportunity for many MSGA members to contact legislators back in the district. Each legislator determines how to use the break. Some spend time only with their families but others use it for constituent contact. Be respectful, but use opportunities if they exist. Some might meet downtown for coffee if asked.

Many initial legislative decisions will change before May 18. Your voice can still be heard.

From Session Daily:

The Legislature is on Passover/Easter break until Tuesday, April 7. Committees can resume meeting that morning and the House is scheduled to be in session at noon. The House is expected to return to a full agenda that week when committee hearings resume. The governor is scheduled to give his State of the State address on Thursday, April 9 at 7 p.m. in the House chamber.

Additionally, he is expected to release plans for funding capital projects that week. Two of the three deadlines have passed for committees to finish up their work and many policy committee chairs have announced they plan no further meetings this session. However, that leaves plenty of time for the finance committee to craft their omnibus bills with an April 24 deadline for completion of that work.

Happy Easter