Minn. Government Shuts Down; New Calif., Iowa and Ill. Budgets Take Effect
Minneapolis Star Tribune: Minnesota Government Begins Historic Shutdown
Talks imploded Thursday between DFL Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican legislative leaders in the final hours before a midnight deadline, and Minnesota began a historic government shutdown. ... Even before the shutdown, Minnesotans got an early peek at the inconvenience from the mothballing of many state services. Minnesotans could no longer check if their optometrists, barbers or veterinarians had valid licenses to practice. Licensing board offices and various other state agencies pulled the plug on their agency websites hours before the scheduled shutdown (Helgeson, Kaszuba, Roper and Stassen-Berger, 7/1).
MinnPost: Government Shutdown Starts Early -- And Ugly
At about 10 Thursday night, two hours before the final settlement deadline, Gov. Mark Dayton addressed the media. ... He ridiculed a last-minute proposal made by Republican legislators, who about 9:30 asked the governor to call a special session and pass a "lights on" piece of legislation that would have kept government going and given the two sides more time to negotiate an issue they've been negotiating since January (Grow, 7/1).
The New York Times: Minnesota Government Shuts In Budget Fight
Minnesota began what is expected to become the broadest shutdown of state services in its history early Friday, after Republicans and Democrats there failed to agree on how to solve the state's budget woes in time for the new fiscal year (Davey, 6/30).
Associated Press: Minn. Government Shuts Down As Budget Talks Fail
Minnesota's stoppage halted non-emergency road construction, shut the state zoo and Capitol, and stopped child-care assistance for the poor. More than 40 state boards and agencies would go dark. Critical services, including the State Patrol, prisons, disaster response and federally funded health, welfare and food stamp programs, will continue (7/1).
Los Angeles Times: Gov. Jerry Brown Signs Rare, On-Time State Budget
Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law Thursday a state budget pact struck with Democratic lawmakers that will curb services the state offers, marking only the second time California has enacted an on-time and balanced spending plan in a decade. ... The $86-billion general fund spending plan contains severe cuts, including reductions of about 23% to the state's universities, raising the price of medical care for the poor, closing senior centers, and cutting welfare grants and cash aid for the elderly and disabled. A total of 70 state parks are slated for closure, community college fees are on the rise and mental health programs will be sharply trimmed (Goldmacher, 6/30).
Des Moines Register: Iowa Budget Passes Hours Before Deadline
The Iowa Legislature beat a midnight deadline with hours to spare on Thursday, finishing work on a $5.99 billion state budget and resolving a dispute over taxpayer money that could be used to pay for some Medicaid abortions. But the 2011 session adjourned without an agreement on property tax reform, considered by Gov. Terry Branstad and lawmakers from both parties as a priority. That sparked immediate speculation the issue could be revived in a special session or be considered again next year (Petroski, 7/1).
Chicago Sun Times: Gov. Quinn's Budget Hits Medicaid, School Transportation Funding
Gov. Quinn enacted a $32.9 billion state budget late Thursday but cut the spending package state lawmakers sent to him by $712.5 million, targeting schools and hospitals that serve low-income patients. Hospitals that serve the poor would get hit under Quinn's proposed changes by seeing state Medicaid reimbursements cut by $276 million, though his administration emphasized inner-city 'safety-net ' medical centers aren't affected by the move (McKinny, 6/30).
Connecticut Mirror: Lawmakers Send Labor A Stern Warning With Bargaining Rights Bill
State legislators gave unionized employees an early taste Thursday of what labor negotiations could be like at the Capitol if major wage and benefit concessions aren't granted to help balance the new budget. After the Senate voted 30 to 6 to adopt a measure curtailing collective bargaining rights tied to pensions and longevity pay, the House of Representatives effectively tabled the matter, but only after its leaders warned it could be considered later this summer. And while lawmakers made it clear their hope is that unions will use the grace period to reconsider a concession package voted down earlier this month -- or adopt something similar -- a union spokesman said Thursday that the message was received (Phaneuf & Pazniokas, 6/30).
Connecticut Mirror: Cities And Towns Win, State Employees Lose In Budget Deal
The House Democratic majority and the administration of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy agreed Thursday to spare municipalities from proposed cuts in state aid, a change that will come at the expense of additional layoffs of state employees if a failed concession deal is not salvaged. The Democratic majority in the House refused to grant Malloy's request for authority to cut municipal aid by 2 percent, so Malloy instead says he will impose as many as 1,000 layoffs above the 5,500 previously announced (Pazniokas, 6/30).