Layoffs for 9,400 state employees, Dayton willing to concede to avoid shutdown

House Republican leaders said Monday they'll accept Gov. Dayton's final offer from the final night of the legislative session and offered to increase base education funding to $525 million. The entire education budget is about $17 billion. Then, Dayton announced he's willing to concede on the hotly contested education bill in order to avoid a government shutdown.

"We're standing off on a diminishing number of details," Dayton said.

Layoffs for 9,400

Meanwhile, layoff notices will be sent out Monday for 9,400 state employees. Jim Anderson is a 30-year employee of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, one of 17 government entities whose employees got layoff notices in the mail on Monday. The largest entity is the DNR.

Anderson, however, isn't worried.

"What we hear through our union representative is that the the upper echelon folks say they're not that far apart," he said.

Layoff notice page 1 [PDF]
Layoff notice page 2 [PDF]

About an hour after Anderson said this, House Speaker Kurt Daudt made the $525 million offer. A couple hours after that, Dayton said he'd be willing to concede on school funding.

"We've agreed on the dollars. We haven't agreed on the details but we're close, we're very, very close," Dayton said.

"I'm very disappointed, as I said, all along their response was what do we get for agreeing to this additional spending for kids? What you get is additional spending for kids."

The haggling clearly irritated both sides.

"Since then we've had four different offers from the governor's office, all looking different, with different dollar amounts and different policy, and frankly, I'm tired of chasing my tail for the last two weeks," Daudt said.

What about the parks?

Regarding the possibility of a government shutdown, state revenue commissioner Myron Frans said state parks will not take any more reservations after July 1. Anyone with prior reservations would need to wait it out if legislators can't come to an agreement on various budget bills.
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