A grim looking DFL governor and GOP lawmakers emerged from behind closed doors to announce they have a deal to solve the state’s $5 billion budget shortfall and end the longest state government shutdown in history. Governor Dayton said he would call a “special session as soon as possible” when they have clear agreement. Republican Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch called it a framework for a deal adding “agreement was difficult for both sides.” Republican House Speaker Kurt Zellers said “It’s a deal that’s done, we’re not all happy.”
Dayton concluded “I expect to be here all weekend and gets the lights on and get people back to work.” Exactly when the special session will happen is unknown. Also, up in the air is whether Democrats will put up the necessary supermajority votes to pass a bonding bill that was part of Dayton’s last offer. DFLers were not in the room for the final dealmaking. Shifting school payments and tobacco bonds will make up the more than a billion dollar divide between Democrats and Republicans.