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Chairman Larry Howes of the House Capital Investment Committee conducts a meeting to fund flood-related projects in this May file photo. Howes met Dayton for lunch secretly earlier this week to discuss what Dayton could offer Republicans toward reaching a deal on the budget and ending the state government shutdown. (Don Davis/Forum Communications Co., file photo)

Howes-Dayton meeting set stage for Minnesota budget deal

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ST. PAUL -- A pair of grilled ham and cheese sandwiches, with chips on the side, may have been just what the budget doctor ordered.

That was the menu for a secret 45-minute Monday lunch at St. Cloud's Jules Bistro between Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton and Rep. Larry Howes, R-Walker. Their meeting may have laid the groundwork for a state budget deal framework announced Thursday evening.

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Don Davis
Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.
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