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Legislative Audit Commission

Minutes

March 23, 2016

Members Present: Members Absent:
Representative Sondra Erickson, Chair
Representative Connie Bernardy
Representative Rick Hansen
Representative Phyllis Kahn
Representative Duane Quam
Representative Linda Runbeck
Senator Michelle Benson
Senator Mary Kiffmeyer
Senator Warren Limmer
Senator Roger J. Reinert
Senator Ann H. Rest
Senator James Metzen

Representative Sondra Erickson, Chair, called the Legislative Audit Commission (LAC) meeting to order at 3:10 p.m. The purpose of the meeting was to approve the evaluation topics selected by the Evaluation Subcommittee.

Representative Hansen moved to adopt the list of evaluation topics recommended by the Evaluation Subcommittee, which were the following:

Clean Water Legacy Fund Outcomes
Home- and Community-Based Services
Minnesota State High School League
Perpich Center for Arts Education
Standardized Student Testing

Representative Erickson asked for discussion. Senator Rest expressed concern that three out of the five topics chosen deal with education, which did not reflect a balanced set of topics. She stated that she could not support the motion. Representative Hansen said that he had expressed the same concern during the subcommittee meeting, but the members of the Evaluation Subcommittee decided to follow the votes of their peers. He noted that although the Minnesota State High School League was approved, there had been differences of opinion among subcommittee members on this topic. Senator Reinert asked James Nobles, Legislative Auditor, and Judy Randall, Deputy Legislative Auditor, if they could speak to the size and resources needed for the suggested evaluations. Ms. Randall said that the Minnesota State High School League and the Perpich Center for Arts Education would be smaller evaluations. Representative Kahn said that the cost of doing any Legacy Fund audits should be paid by the Legacy Fund, but this would need to be addressed through a change in law.

With no further discussion, Representative Erickson renewed Representative Hansen’s motion to approve the five topics recommended by the Evaluation Subcommittee; the motion prevailed.

Senator Rest suggested that next year, the LAC should develop a policy that the Evaluation Subcommittee choose no more than two topics from the same general area to present to legislators to vote on. Representative Erickson asked for that suggestion to be an official motion. Senator Rest moved that when the Evaluation Subcommittee selects topics for the legislative survey, they consider no more than two topics in any broad jurisdictional area. After some debate among the members as to whether this might limit what topics legislators could choose, based upon concerns from their constituents or peers, Senator Rest withdrew her motion. Senator Reinert moved that the full commission encourage the Evaluation Subcommittee to consider balance when offering topics for the legislative survey. After more discussion among the members, the motion prevailed. Ms. Randall gave an update on the remaining evaluations—Deer Population Management and the Arigucultural Utilization Research Institute—to be released in mid-April and May, respectively.

With no further business, Representative Erickson adjourned the meeting at 3:34 p.m.

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Representative Sondra Erickson, Chair

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Maureen Garrahy, Recording Secretary

 

Mentioned

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