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Legislative leaders meet to plan disaster relief plan for special session

State House and Senate members will meet Wednesday night to prepare for the Sept. 9 special session called by Gov. Mark Dayton to authorize storm damage relief.

The 2013 Disaster Relief Working Group, made up of members of the House Ways and Means Committee and the Senate Finance Committee, will meet at 6:30 p.m. in the State Office Building. Chairs are Rep. Lyndon Carlson and Sen. Richard Cohen.

In the special session, legislators will vote on appropriating about $5.7 million in relief to 20 counties hit hard by storms this summer.

The federal government has already allocated more than $15 million in emergency aid after President Obama signed a disaster declaration which commits the federal government to pay for 75 percent of the cost to cities, counties and townships for repairs to infrastructure.

But the state needs to come up with the remaining 25 percent to get the federal aid.

Gov. Dayton and legislative leaders have agreed to limit the special session to this one issue, even though there have been many calls to include some business tax relief during the one-day session.

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