The Latest: Walz announces 1-day special session

May 23, 2019
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Gov. Tim Walz, center, with Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka, left, and House Speaker Melissa Hortman, listens at a news conference to announce a budget deal in St. Paul, Minn., Sunday, May 19, 2019. Walz and top legislative leaders reached a bipartisan budget deal Sunday in which the governor dropped his proposed gas tax increase but got to keep most of an expiring tax that helps fund health care programs, Republicans got an income tax cut for middle-class Minnesotans and both sides claimed credit for additional spending on education. (Glen Stubbe/Star Tribune via AP)

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Latest on developments at the Minnesota Capitol on Thursday (all times local):

6:40 p.m.

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz has called a one-day special session beginning Friday so that lawmakers can finish their work and complete a $48 billion state government budget for the next two years.

Walz announced Thursday that he and legislative leaders signed an agreement outlining terms of the special session. Walz then called for the special session to convene at 10 a.m. Friday. Legislative leaders agreed to adjourn the session before 7 a.m. Saturday.

The last piece of the budget fell into place early Thursday when the Democratic governor and leaders of the Senate Republican and House Democratic majorities agreed on a health and human services funding bill. They agreed on most of the other big budget bills Wednesday.

But they didn’t nail down the starting date for the special session until Thursday night after a day of back-and-forth consultations in private.


4:35 p.m.

Gov. Tim Walz has signed a bill allowing homeowners to void racially restrictive covenants in their property titles.

Covenants in property titles that impose racial restrictions on ownership are unenforceable under federal and state law.

But researchers estimate that such language remains attached to thousands of property titles in Minnesota.

Democratic Sen. Jeff Hayden of Minneapolis said in a statement Thursday that Minnesota’s continued segregation by race is a lasting ramification of those covenants.

The new law allows property owners to file forms with their counties specifically stating that those covenants no longer apply.


9:10 a.m.

Gov. Tim Walz and top legislative leaders have now reached agreement on all nine of their major budget bills, and lawmakers are now waiting on the governor to call a special session so they can finish their work for the year.

Aides say the last piece of the two-year budget fell into place early Thursday when the governor and leaders of the Senate Republican and House Democratic majorities agreed on a health and human services funding bill, which is one of the biggest parts of the budget.

The three leaders agreed Wednesday night on bills to finance state government and a jobs-and-energy budget bill. The state government bill includes authority for spending $6.6 million in federal election security funding and money to help prepare Minnesota for the 2020 census.

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