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Legislative Audit Commission
Topic Selection Subcommittee


March 25, 2002

The meeting of the Topic Selection Subcommittee of the Legislative Audit Commission was called to order by Senator Claire Robling at 9:10 a.m. on Monday, March 25, 2002 in Room 125, State Capitol.

Members Present:

Senator Sheila Kiscaden    Representative Dan Larson
Senator Claire Robling Representative Dan McElroy
Senator Deanna Weiner Representative Wes Skoglund

Other Legislators Present:

Senator Bob Kierlin    Representative Fran Bradley
Senator Twyla Ring Representative Alice Haussman
Representative Steve Smith

Senator Robling indicated the purpose of the meeting was to review the 12 background papers, results of the legislative survey, hear testimony from legislators suggesting those topics, and to select six to seven topics to recommend to the full Commission.

Senator Robling recognized Roger Brooks, Deputy Legislative Auditor for Program Evaluation. Mr. Brooks reviewed the survey results.

Senator Robling recognized Senator Bob Kierlin, who spoke in support of a study concerning health insurance for retired public employees, particularly from school districts. He expressed concern over possible unfunded future obligations.

Senator Robling recognized Representative Steve Smith, who spoke in support of a study concerning shelters for battered women. He expressed concern over the variations in per diems and financial health of many shelters. In response to a question from Senator Kiscaden, he indicated the Department of Public Safety has not conducted any studies in this area.

Senator Robling recognized Representative Fran Bradley, who spoke in support of a study concerning MinnesotaCare. He expressed concern over the complicated eligibility requirements, waivers, efficiencies, and impact on the private insurance market.

Senator Robling recognized Senator Twyla Ring and Representative Alice Hausmann. They spoke in support of a study concerning DNR trails, which should determine how DNR oversees the trails, the process of designating trails for certain uses, and how funds are used.

Mr. Brooks indicated the office had resources to complete four medium to large studies and possibly one or two smaller ones. Subcommittee members then discussed the proposals and selected seven to recommend to the full Commission. The seven studies selected, in priority order, were: 1) use of consultants, 2) DNR trails programs, 3) MinnesotaCare, 4) Metropolitan Airports Commission, 5) administration of Medicaid, 6) charter school financial accountability, and 7) higher education reciprocity.

The meeting adjourned at 10:05 a.m.

Senator Claire Robling, Chair

Jean Barnhill, Recording Secretary



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