Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.
- Member for
- 5 years 2 weeks
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota state Sen. Bill Ingebrigtsen's legislation passed, and by more than an eyelash. The Alexandria state senator, a burly former sheriff, caught the eye of colleagues Tuesday when he offered legislation to require technicians who install eyelash extensions to be licensed. In a blink, it passed 48-11. Sen. David Senjem, R-Rochester, asked Ingebrigtsen why anyone would want to extend eyelashes: "Would these be generally effective for sunlight or keeping bugs out of your eyes?"
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota legislators are hurrying to protect Prince's name, voice and likeness less than three weeks after the state's most famous musician died. A House committee is to consider legislation with those protections Tuesday, a day after it was introduced, an unusually quick response. A Senate meeting is expected Wednesday.
ST. PAUL -- The Minnesota Legislature is in limbo after Thursday's narrow defeat of a major issue on the table this year. "I think for those Republicans who want to have a do-nothing session, they don't feel we should spend any money, they may get their way," Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk, D-Cook, said after a Democratic public works funding bill failed by a single vote.
ST. PAUL -- Young Minnesotans may think mobile telephone cases that look like guns are fun, but state legislators are close to banning them. "Someday, some kid is going to hold up a cell phone case and somebody ... is going to die," Sen. Ron Latz, D-St. Louis Park, said Wednesday before senators unanimously voted to forbid the cases. Latz said the cases easily can be mistaken for real guns and a law enforcement officer or another armed person could shoot in self-defense.
ST. PAUL -- Dessert is pretty important to Paul Torkelson. As strange as it sounds, that is one of the major holdups in getting legislative work done this year. Torkelson, a Republican state representative from Hanska, famously calls a public works spending bill, to be financed by the state selling bonds, the "dessert" of the legislative session. That has drawn attacks from Democrats who think bonding is a main course.
ST. PAUL -- Efforts to launch a presidential primary after Minnesota's overflowing March precinct caucuses frustrated voters hit a series of roadblocks Tuesday in a key Senate committee.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota senators approved spending $158 million Tuesday, with little discussion, for outdoors projects. The votes came on a $112 million plan that mostly buys land to preserve prairies, forests, wetlands and wildlife habitat and a $46 million bill that focuses on a variety of projects, ranging from natural resources education to fighting aquatic invasive species.
ST. PAUL -- House and Senate leaders are far apart about how much to spend on public works projects. Nearly $1 billion apart.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota senators overwhelmingly support allowing elderly or disabled people, especially those nearing death, to live in small homes on family property. "Some aging Minnesotans are put in a position that their housing needs are not adequately met," Sen. John Hoffman, D-Champlin, said about his bill Monday.
ST. PAUL -- Video from law enforcement officer body cameras apparently will remain public at least into next year, but the issue still generates passionate disputes. "Body cameras have been proven to promote public safety," Sen. Ron Latz, D-St. Louis Park, said Monday, before senators voted 47-14 to regulate body cam video.