Legislative Update – March 29, 2017

Senate Higher Education bill passes off Senate Floor

Late Tuesday night, the Senate heard SF 2214 – the Higher Education Finance and Policy bill. Republicans control the Senate with a one member majority (34-33).

The following amendments were heard:

  • Sen. Tomassoni (DFL-Chisholm) offered A67 amendment – an easement grant to the Housing and Redevelopment Authority for the City of Virginia at Mesabi Range College. It was adopted on a voice vote.
  • Sen. Dziedzic (DFL-Minneapolis) offered A66 amendment – which at no additional cost – expand eligibility for child care assistance for students. Sen. Fischbach voiced concerns that although the amendment would not cost any additional dollars , the grant may not reach as many students. It was adopted on a voice vote.
  • Sen. Marty (DFL-Roseville) – offered A73 amendment to remove all policy language from the bill. He noted Governor Dayton’s concern that policy is being combined with budget bills and that in order for a clean process, the two should be separated. The amendment was not adopted on a 31-36 vote.
  • Sen. Clausen (DFL-Apple Valley) offered A74 amendment to remove state grant tuition caps. The amendment was not adopted on a 33-34 vote.
  • Sen. Isaacson (DFL-Shoreview) offered A75 amendment to change the tuition freeze language for Minnesota State from “must establish” to “is requested to set” which is similar language to that provided to the University of Minnesota. The amendment was not adopted on a 29-38 vote.
  • Sen. Clausen (DFL-Apple Valley) offered A68 amendment and A72 amendment which looked to modify the language aimed at for-profit schools and the Office of Higher Education oversight. Neither amendment was adopted on a 33-34 vote.

After amendments were heard, Senators Cohen, Isaacson, and Pappas spoke out against the bill. SF 2214 passed the Senate Floor on a 36-31 votes.

House Higher Education bill to be heard Wednesday in Ways and Means

The next step for HF 2477 – the House Higher Education Omnibus Bill will be heard in Ways and Means on Wednesday. This is the next stop before heading to the House Floor for debate. The Committee is listed to begin at 5:00 p.m. or at the call of the chair and will be live streamed.

Read more…

Questions? Contact the Government Relations Team:

Jaime Simonsen
Bernie Omann
Jim Grathwol

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