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Legislators eager to parse Minn. budget bills

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House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt
House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt on the first day of the legislative session at the Capitol in St. Paul, Minn., Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013.
MPR Photo/Jeffrey Thompson

DFL Gov. Mark Dayton announced his two-year budget proposal nearly three weeks ago, but most of those tax and spending recommendations have not yet arrived in the House and Senate as bills.

Republicans are wondering why. House Minority leader Kurt Daudt, R-Crown, said those bills are supposed to arrive within 15 days of the release of the budget. Daudt said lawmakers have many questions and need to see the bills.

"We hear from concerned constituents every day about will this be taxed, will that be taxed," Daudt said. "We haven't gotten the best information from the administration on how that will work. So we look for the budget in actual bill format so we can see the language on how these will be put into law."

House Speaker Paul Thissen, D-Minneapolis, said he doesn't remember any governor meeting that 15-day deadline. 

"I know those bills are being prepared and put together, and they're complicated," Thissen said. "So as soon as we get them, we'll start  them moving through the process. But as we speak now, people are spending a lot of time digging into the budget in general, getting a baseline understanding to look at those bills and other proposals."

Thissen said he expects the bills will arrive soon. 

Legislative committees are already holding hearings on many of the governor's proposals.