The 2018 legislative session stumbled across the finish line moments before midnight on Sunday, May 20, though much of the session’s work was voided when Gov. Dayton vetoed a supplemental budget bill and a proposal to align Minnesota’s tax code with federal law. The nearly 1,000-page funding bill was the result of countless hearings during the session. Dayton’s veto was not unexpected, as he made clear throughout the session that he would reject spending bills that included multiple subjects and policy provisions not affiliated with spending. The bill contained hundreds of smaller provisions, from opioid abuse and addiction to school-linked mental health funding to childhood trauma studies.
The MNAAP saw mixed results from the 2018 session. The chapter hosted a very successful Pediatrician’s Day at the Capitol, with more than 130 attendees making their case on behalf of child health. As is often the case in any given legislative session, the MNAAP spent significant time on issues that had not been anticipated to be a topic of action – specifically safe sleep requirements for licensed child care facilities. The MNAAP was also forced to unexpectedly defend against negative amendments related to the state’s vaccine laws. With the Legislature and governor unable to come to an agreement on the supplemental spending package or tax conformity, the 2018 session will be remembered primarily for inaction.
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