An $18 billion surplus.

Cannabis legalization.

A last-minute $300 million deal for nursing homes.

A $2.6 billion infrastructure package.

A bill that could drive Uber and Lyft out of Minnesota.

Paid family leave.

A bill gutted in the final hours on nurse staffing ratios that reflected a showdown between the powerful nursing union and the arguably more powerful Mayo Clinic.

New taxes, new regulations, and a whole lot of new things that will impact our everyday lives.

These are just a handful of the bills and newsworthy items that came in the final days of the 2023 Minnesota legislative session. Having been a staffer for several years in the legislature and understanding full well what a normal session looks like in St. Paul, this year was anything but normal. Affectionately called the ‘DFL trifecta’ by Democrat leaders, one-party control of state government quickly advanced new and far-reaching bills at a pace not seen in decades.

For clients, it was chaotic and an uphill battle for many.

Those who planned ahead before the session began were at an advantage when it came to tapping into voices and stakeholders willing to join them in the fight for their priorities. Those who jumped in late or didn’t expect that level of fight for their priorities found a greater struggle to break through the noise.

And while lawmakers may be headed out to summer vacations, constituent town halls, and won’t regularly be in the halls of the State Capitol, for the rest of us, it’s no time to slow down.

If this session taught us anything, it’s that many fights are just beginning. Ideas that may have died this year could easily be resurrected in 2024. Moreover, heading into an election year, I strongly believe that DFL lawmakers will double down on their progressive agenda, thinking their priorities are what helped sweep them into office in 2023 and will only further their majorities in 2025.

If you’re worried about an issue or policy, the time to start thinking through strategy is now. In the summer and fall, you can employ a number of tactics – from coalition building to having background conversations with reporters to understanding and executing on what influences key lawmakers’ decision-making.

Alright – maybe take a well-deserved breather through Memorial Day weekend, but then it’s time to look ahead to summer and fall on ways you can get ahead of the 2024 session!

And if you’re not sure where to start? From strategy to execution – K2 is here to help!