Dayton: State of the State will be a ‘future-looking speech’

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Gov. Mark Dayton says his State of the State address to the Legislature later this month will focus on the future of Minnesota, as well as a look back at his accomplishments during the past three and a half years in office.

Governors typically deliver the message at the beginning of the session, with a focus their legislative agenda.  But this year Dayton delayed the speech while recovering from hip surgery. It is now scheduled for April 30, and lawmakers could be getting close to wrapping up the 2014 session by then. He told reporters Tuesday what he has in mind.

“It’s going to be a future-looking speech, and talk about what I think lies ahead, what Minnesota’s challenges are,” Dayton said. “Not in a partisan or political way, but in a way that I believe is necessary for our state to continue the kind of progress that we’ve made the past three years.”

Dayton, who is running for re-election this fall, did not offer any specifics on the speech that is still more than two weeks away. He said he thinks the speech might be more important to people inside the Capitol than those outside.

“I have yet to find a single Minnesotan out there who’s asked me anxiously when am I giving the State of the State address,” he said.

The constitutional date for adjourning the session is May 19, but DFL leaders have suggested they could finish their work sooner. Dayton said he thinks they should take all the time they need.