Dayton vetoes public school budget, signs 4 other bills

Mark Dayton
Gov. Mark Dayton spoke to reporters about a budget bill at the Veterans Affairs building Sunday, May 17, 2015, in St. Paul.
Jeff Wheeler | Star Tribune via AP

Updated: 1:15 p.m. | Posted: 5:45 a.m.

Governor Mark Dayton has followed through on his promise to veto the Legislature's budget for public schools.

Dayton officially vetoed the bill after it reached his desk on Thursday. It follows nearly a week of promises to strike down the $17 billion funding package.

But Dayton approved spending levels for health care programs, higher education and transportation on Friday. He also signed a budget for courts and public safety programs that also legalizes gun silencers. Dayton had previously promised to veto any bill with that provision.

The Democratic governor says lawmakers need to provide more money for education, including for a statewide preschool program he's made a top priority. He'll call the Legislature back for a special session to try again.

Republican lawmakers have called on the governor to reconsider his veto, saying an extra $400 million in funding should be sufficient for his signature.

The governor is still weighing calls to veto budgets that fund environment and agricultural programs, state government agencies and a jobs and energy bill. He has until the end of Saturday to decide whether to veto or approve the other bills.

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