Parties Split on Virus Aid/Walz Expected to Extend Peacetime Emergency

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MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Unless divided lawmakers agree on something different, Democratic leaders say Gov. Tim Walz will have complete authority to decide how to spend Minnesota’s nearly $2 billion share of federal coronavirus aid.

Senate Republicans want to direct that $667 million of that aid go to counties, cities and towns on a per-capita basis.

But Democratic House Speaker Melissa Hortman calls that a negotiating position. She says House Democrats will unveil their own plan Wednesday.

Also happening Wednesday, Walz is expected to extend his peacetime state of emergency declaration through June 12 to preserve his emergency powers to respond to the pandemic.

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