Real ID passes, a bonding bill doesn't and budget talks continue - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Real ID passes, a bonding bill doesn't and budget talks continue

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (KTTC) -

Real ID passes with bipartisan support, in the House 120 to 11 and 57 to 8 in the Senate.

Now, many law makers are saying it's about time.

"So this is a good thing, I'm glad we finally put this one to rest and I'm sure the governor will sign the bill,"Representative Greg Davids, Republican from Preston, said. "I hope he signs the bill so Minnesota complies with Real ID."

Minnesota has had since 2005 to pass this bill, but it wasn't proving popular with many.

"There was a few issues, there were people initially concerned about the privacy aspect," Representative Dean Smith, Republican from Maple Grove, said. "There were some people concerned with the security of the data, there were some people who wanted drivers licenses for undocumented immigrants."

It was in committee that the bill became more acceptable for legislators.

"Once they came up with the idea that if you want Real ID go get it, if you don't want it, you don't have to have it," Rep. Davids said. "It's really hard to think about voting against it, cause everybody wins on that."
As for another item on the docket, the House wasn't able to come to a consensus on the $800 million bonding bill to fund public works projects throughout the state.

House Minority Leader Melissa Hortman says this is because Republicans were asking everyone to "vote on faith" without knowing what was in the bill.

At the same time, Governor Dayton was in talks with caucus leaders to agree on a budget.

The main concern, tax cuts and transportation.

"He'll have a decision to make with leadership in the House and Senate to get a number together, whatever number i get, i can get a good tax bill together," Rep. Davids said. "It's come down some, we don't want to come down too much, we want some real tax relief for Minnesotans."

The governor has come up with a budget offer he calls "Meet Half Way".

Most of the state's $1.65 billion surplus would be divided in half.

Around $682 million would go to Republican's priorities, tax cuts and transportation.

And the other half,  would go to state programs and services.

However after a meeting Wednesday evening, Republicans asked for an 80/20 split.

Governor Dayton says that if they cant meet him half way, they wont finish on time and it will be all their fault.

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