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SAINT PAUL —The 2024 legislative session is in the books after a late-night finish up to the constitutionally-mandated adjournment time.

With time running out just before the deadline on Sunday, May 19, House and Senate leaders combined the remaining supplemental budget bills and a few other significant bills, including amendments to the Minnesota Paid Leave Law (Paid Family Medical Leave Act), into one bill and passed it just before midnight.

Links to the supplemental budget and policy bills with impacts on public education are available below.

Omnibus Education Finance Bill

The Omnibus Education Supplemental Bill has passed the House and Senate and the Governor signed it into law. Links to the final bill, a spreadsheet, and the Read Act funding distribution can be found below:

Omnibus Education Policy Bill

The House and Senate have passed the Omnibus Education Policy Bill and the Governor has signed it into law. The bill includes some noteworthy amendments to the Read Act including identifying the staff who are required to be trained and an extension in the timelines.

Elections Policy Bill

The House and Senate adopted the Omnibus Elections Policy Bill and the Governor has signed it into law. Key provisions impacting school districts:

  • Provides that an appointment to fill a vacancy on a school board that occurs less than two years prior to the expiration of the term is valid for the remainder of the unexpired term, and no special election is required. It further provides that a school board may, but is not required to, fill a vacancy that occurs less than 90 days prior to the expiration of the term.

  • Allows school boards to pass a combined polling place resolution only when a change is made. Under current law, public school districts are required to pass the same consolidated polling place resolution every year, even when no changes are made.

A proposal to establish a petition process to place a question on the ballot to move from a six member school board to a seven member school board was under consideration but was NOT included in the conference committee report.

Omnibus Tax Bill and Supplemental Budget Bill

In the final hours of the 2024 session, eight bills were amended into a scaled down Tax Bill. Among the bills rolled into the Omnibus Tax Bill were the Transportation, Housing, and Labor Bill and the Paid Family Medical Leave bill — now known as the Minnesota Paid Family Law. The Labor Bill includes language related to the Earned Sick and Safe Time law that clarifies that paid leave accrued prior to Jan. 1, 2024 is subject to the written notice and documentation requirements in the employer’s applicable policy or applicable collective bargaining agreement as of Dec. 31, 2023. The bill also stipulates that an employer must not require an employee to use leave accrued on or after Jan. 1, 2024, before using leave accrued prior to that date.

The bill amending the Minnesota Paid Leave Law allows the Commissioner of DEED to adjust the premium rate prior to premiums first taking effect Jan. 1, 2026. Starting July 31, 2026, and each July 31 thereafter, it requires an annual premium rate adjustment based on the program’s experience and sound actuarial principles so that the projected fund balance as a percentage of total program expenditure does not fall below 25 percent. The bill also requires an actuarial study every year. The premium was originally set at 0.7 percent of payroll divided between the employee and the employer. However, a recent actuarial study indicates that the premium will need to start at 0.88 percent or higher.

Pension Bill Signed Into Law

The Pensions Supplemental Budget Bill has been signed into law by Gov. Walz. The bill includes sections that affect the St. Paul Teachers Retirement, TRA and PERA retirement funds including:

  • Changes the effective date of the change made last session to the normal retirement age for Tier 2 members of TRA. The change was to lower the age at which a member receives an unreduced pension (“normal retirement age”) from 66 to 65. Tier II members are members who joined TRA after June 30, 1989. The effective date in current law of July 1, 2025, is changed to July 1, 2024.

  • Lower the employee contribution rate for members of St. Paul Teachers Retirement Fund by 0.25 percent of salary for the fiscal years ending June 30, 2025, and June 30, 2026. The current employee contribution rate for coordinated members of 7.75 percent of salary through June 30, 2025, which would have increased to 9 percent of salary on July 1, 2025, is reduced to the following:

    • Through June 30, 2024: 7.75 percent

    • June 30, 2024-June 30, 2025: 7.5 percent

    • June 30, 2025-June 30, 2026: 8.75 percent

    • After June 30, 2026: 9 percent

  • Amends a 2022 session law that suspended the earnings limitation for retirees of TRA and St. Paul Teachers who return to teaching service. The suspension, which is scheduled to expire on Jan. 1, 2026, is extended by three years. Without the extension, retirees who return to employment would have their annuity payments reduced if their earnings from reemployment exceed the earnings limitation, beginning in 2026.

  • Restores the TRA amortization date to 2048 instead of 2053 which keeps it in line with other state plans

  • LINK: Chapter 102, House File 5040