Little Progress Emerges From First Post-Shutdown Talks
The first day since the holiday weekend and sadly there is no encouraging news as of yet.
Leaders at the Capitol emerged Tuesday from the latest negotiations since the shutdown began with little progress to announce.
In fact, things may have taken a step backward.
Republicans renewed their request for the governor to call a special session so they could pass a “lights on” bill and those budget bills where spending targets are close — though vast policy differences remain. Dayton dismissed that strategy because he said it would require “offsetting cuts” to other areas.
Though Republicans had at one point offered a budget that spent more than the original $34.2 billion, they said Tuesday that they were now working again with their original target. Zellers noted that Dayton rejected their revenue offer.
“That’s the only thing that we have on the table right now,” Zellers said of their $34.2 billion target. “Our last offer was rejected.”
The group agreed to hold a meeting Wednesday on the Health and Human Services budget and another Thursday on the K-12 budget.
While Dayton has repeatedly rejected calls for a so-called “piecemeal” approach to passing the budget, Koch said they will keep pushing for it.
“It’s not an OK answer just to say say, ‘I don’t like piecemeal,’” Koch said. “If we have areas where we can agree, we should.”
Dayton said they can only solve the problem by tackling the hardest areas and developing a global deal.