Ten days to go to reach a state budget settlement, or else the padlocks go up on the state parks and tens of thousands of state workers will have to figure out what to watch on daytime TV, now that Oprah’s gone.
Gov. Mark Dayton’s office said he’s in town today, but has no public appearances. Let’s hope there is lots of non-public negotiating happening somewhere.
And soon after a story appeared in the Star Tribune Saturday morning saying that state lawmakers plan to keep getting paid even if there is a shutdown, Gov. Mark Dayton and Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch — on opposite sides of the budget battle — announced they, at least, will not take any state pay during a shutdown.
“In the event of a state government shutdown, which I remain committed to doing everything possible to avoid, I think it would be terribly wrong for those of us responsible for it, the Republican legislators and myself, to receive our salaries while thousands of dedicated state employees have lost theirs.”
Koch said she would not collect her legislative salary or legislative per diem payments “in the event Governor Mark Dayton” forces a government shutdown.
Doesn’t sound like they’re all that close to agreement, does it?