Behind The Scenes: St. Paul - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Behind The Scenes: St. Paul

St. Paul, Minn. (KTTC) At the capitol, negotiations between Governor Mark Dayton and the Republican leadership continue.

And those negotiations leave many lawmakers, like their constituents, playing the waiting game.

While negotiations continued, the halls at the Capitol were quiet with only a hint of reporters waiting for a budget resolution and tourists looking to take pictures.

The Senate and House Chambers were empty and closed off with metal gates resembling prison bars.

Almost symbolizing what seems like an inevitable government shutdown.

Even though not all lawmakers are involved in negotiations, it hasn't stopped them being accountable to their constituents.

"I was in my office calling all my constituents, Not all but I have a long list of folks who had called my office sometimes during the last week of session which was really hectic," says the Republican State Senator of Rochester Carla Nelson.

"Constituents call me and e-mail me at home on the house account and returning phone calls to house constituents," says the DFL State Representative of Brooklyn Park Mike Nelson.

Both Nelsons say they hope a budget resolution can be reached so there can be a lights-on bill passed to avoid a total shutdown.

Republican State Senator David Senjem says he's working to do just that.

He says he talks with the Republican leadership during recesses to offer ideas that may help bring in a final deal between the two parties with out raising any taxes.

"Well we certainly could offer a significant bonding bill.....a possibility of gaming. Racino is favored by nearly 80 percent of Minnesotans. That would bring in about $300 million a year," says Senjem.

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