House Moving to Curtail Powers of Cities

Much discussion has been heard about the state legislature preventing cities from implementing local authority in areas of minimum wage and employment rules through the Preemption Bill. In a proposed amendment, which may show the full scope of the state’s clawing back power is the following amendment language:

“Sec. 2. MUNICIPAL POWERS AND DUTIES TRANSFERRED TO STATE. 1.4 Subdivision 1. Transfer. The legislature shall exercise all powers and duties of home 1.5 rule charter and statutory cities through specific legislation enacted into law. Each city 1.6 council is advisory to the legislature and in any year, may not adopt any ordinances, 1.7 resolutions, policies, or budgets; make capital improvements or authorize issuance of debt; 1.8 hire or retain personnel; or otherwise conduct business of the city until a law is enacted 1.9 authorizing each ordinance, resolution, policy, budget, capital improvement, issuance of 1.10 debt, hiring or retention of personnel, or other business of the city. For the purposes of this 1.11 transfer of power and duties, all municipal employees are employees of the state, and the 1.12 state shall assume liability for all obligations of municipalities. Minnesota Statutes, section 1.13 15.039, applies to the transfer of powers, duties, personnel, and obligations.

The entirety can be seen here.

If this were to take place Home Rule authority will go by-the-by. Minneapolis will not be able to impose a minimum wage or work hour regulations on its businesses and we hope this would also prevent municipalities from constituting their own voting process, i.e. Rank Choice Voting. For those of you who do not know C&B Publisher Shawn Towle is in the midst of a campaign to end Ranked Voting in the City of St Paul.

We know Governor Mark Dayton (DFL) has said he is willing to veto the Preemption Bill, but he has been known to compromise in the past and his support for an increase in the minimum wage is common knowledge.

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