Dayton, GOP agree on special session venue; government shutdown looming

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The budget stalemate in Minnesota's capital is one step closer to a thaw, thanks to an agreement Dayton and Republican House Speaker Kurt Daudt reached Tuesday.

The two met for an hourlong sit-down aimed scheduling a special session of the Legislature, and walked away with plans for a one-day session that will be held in the State Office Building, FOX 9 reports.

The station says there's still no decision as to the "when," but it's an important step as the massive renovation project at the Capitol building has resumed.

The construction work forced lawmakers to settle their differences in another venue.

The Star Tribune notes the temporary arena presents its own problems: the rooms that will likely be used to hold the special session are much smaller than the Senate and House chambers, meaning access to media may be cut off, among other challenges.

The paper points out that the building is referred to around town as "the SOB."

This comes after Democrat Dayton vetoed three of the Legislature's last-minute budget bills, two of them over the weekend: an education bill, an agriculture and environment bill, and a jobs and energy measure.

The governor indicated that he pulled out his veto pen over disagreements with the bills, including the lack of funding they provided to programs like statewide universal preschool.

With this year's legislative session already at an end, the move pushed lawmakers into extra innings, and the clock is ticking.

Without a budget deal by July 1, WCCO reports, Minnesota will go into a partial government shutdown.

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