Rauner Calls Special Session On IL State Budget

IL Gov. Bruce Rauner has called a 10-day special session to try and pass a state budget.

The special legislative session would run from Wednesday, June 21, through the June 30 end of the fiscal year. Rauner said Republicans have put together a “budget plan I can sign” and expressed hope the Democrat-led General Assembly will agree.

MN Legislature Sues Gov Over Legislative Funding

The Minnesota House and Senate filed a lawsuit on Tuesday asking a judge to overturn Gov. Mark Dayton’s veto of their funding for the next two years.

The lawsuit, filed in Ramsey County District Court, claims Dayton’s constitutional veto power doesn’t allow him to defund the Legislature. Lawmakers are also asking for an immediate order letting legislators and staff get paid while the legal matters are worked out.  Read more from the Twin Cities Pioneer Press.

MWFPA Friday/Weckel Scholarship Winners Named

The MWFPA Human Resources Committee of MWFPA has chosen six candidates to receive Friday/Weckel scholarships for the 2017-18 academic year. The recipients are as follows:

Carlton A. Friday Scholarship Award
1. Abigail Solum              UW River Falls    $1,500
2. Erin Marchant             UW Platteville     $1,500
3. Madeline Bode            UW Platteville     $1,500

Kenneth G. Weckel Scholarship Award
1. Anna Lucht                 UW River Falls     $1,500
2. Johnathan Sogin        UW Madison         $1,500
3. Elizabeth Martino     UW Platteville       $1,500

Letters have been sent notifying each recipient of their selection and inviting them to the annual convention in Rochester, MN. Congratulations to our winners and thank you to the HR Committee for their work with our scholarships!

Dayton Vetoes Local Preemption Bill In MN

MN Gov. Mark Dayton vetoed the Uniform State Labor Standards Act that passed both houses of the state legislature. The measure would have explicitly prevented local governments from mandating local wage and benefit packages on private employers.

Business groups such as the MN Chamber adamantly oppose government interference in private-sector employee benefits. What’s worse is a local patchwork of mandates that impose different rules and requirements across the state.

The final package presented to the Gov. included not only preemption, but provisions for public-sector employees, including six weeks paid family leave for state employees, financial support for state employee pensions, and new tools for authorities to protect against wage theft.

The measure had the support of a broad coalition of large and small employers, local chambers of commerce, every business trade association in the state, and MWFPA.

Dayton Signs MN Budget/Tax Bills, Vetoes Legislative Funding Setting Up Court Challenge

MN Gov. Mark Dayton took action on all the major bills passed by the State Legislature – signing all the budget bills and tax bills to avoid a government shutdown.

However, this may not end negotiations as Dayton line-item vetoed the House and Senate legislative budgets in an attempt to force them back to the table. In Dayton’s veto letter, he highlighted provisions he wants to undo in another special session including the repeal of the automatic inflator on the statewide business property tax levy and cigarette taxes; the increase in the estate tax threshold; teacher licensing reforms; and rulemaking prohibitions on drivers’ licenses for undocumented immigrants.

Legislative leadership already has indicated that it will likely go to court, perhaps today, to challenge Dayton’s line-item veto of the legislative appropriations as unconstitutional due to separation of powers.

IL Passes $15 Minimum Wage

Democrats in the IL General Assembly passed a massive 82 percent increase in the state’s minimum wage without Republican support. Under SB 81 (Guzzardi/Lightford), the state’s current $8.25 wage will spike to $15 per hour over the next five years resulting in a substantial cost increase for businesses.

SB 81 narrowly passed the House of Representatives (61-53-2) and Senate (30-23-2) on the final day of session. It now goes to the Governor’s desk where it faces a likely veto. Governor Bruce Rauner has expressed a willingness to sign a wage hike only if coupled with other economic development reforms.

Under the plan, a new two-tiered system is created based on age and experience. Employees over the age of 18 years or younger employees who have worked at least 650 hours will receive a $15 wage while employees under the age of 18 who have worked less than 650 hours will receive a smaller $12 wage when fully phased in.



18 years or older or 18 years and younger with more than 650 hours of work Younger than 18 years with less than 650 hours of work
January 1, 2018 $9.00 $8.00
January 1, 2019 $10.00 $8.50
January 1, 2020 $11.25 $9.25
January 1, 2021 $13.00 $10.50
January 1, 2022 $15.00 $12.00

The legislation also includes a tax credit for small businesses with less than 50 employees.