Sept. 9 special session set by Dayton, legislators

Published 10:35 am Thursday, August 22, 2013

ST. PAUL — Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton and legislative leaders agreed Wednesday to a one-day special session Sept. 9 to approve relief for areas hit hard by storms in June.

The session will be limited to storm relief despite some bipartisan support to repeal a recently enacted sales tax on farm equipment repairs. Minority Republicans also wanted discussion of repealing other new taxes approved by the Democratic-controlled Legislature last spring.

But House Speaker Paul Thissen, a Minneapolis Democrat, said the two sides couldn’t reach agreement on tax changes and agreed to focus on storm damage.

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“We’ll do what we’ve done in the past, which is make sure our first and top priority is getting relief to the folks who really need it across the state of Minnesota,” Thissen said.

President Barack Obama recently signed a federal declaration for 18 counties hit hard by storms, high winds and flooding in late June, paving the way for federal aid. But that money must be matched by $4.5 million from the state. The money will help pay for repairs to damaged public infrastructure.