Minn. government shutdown: List of what will be open or closed


ST. PAUL, Minn. -- On Thursday, in compliance with a court order from Judge Kathleen Gearin, Secretary of State Mark Ritchie announced that the Office of the Secretary of State would remain open in the event a government shutdown. The office will continue to provide data for business loans.

Ritchie's office issued a statement Thursday saying "Judge Gearin has ordered that the critical core functions our office provides remain open. Every month, our office works to protect the constitutional rights of Minnesotans through a variety of core services. The loss of these services would have been devastating to Minnesotans. Today, the Court has made clear that Minnesotans will not lose these core rights during the budget negotiations," stated Ritchie.

Also Thursday, the Brainerd Lakes Chamber issued a news release stating that it will continue to operate the Highway 371 visitor information center and rest stop in the event of a government shutdown.

The rest stop, which also houses offices for the Minnesota State Patrol, will remain open 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.

The Brainerd Lakes Chamber will bear the costs of operating the facility throughout the shutdown.

The Brainerd Lakes Chamber news release stated "Our Welcome Center is too valuable of an information resource for visitors to the Brainerd Lakes Area to be held hostage by the political process," said Lisa Paxton, Brainerd Lakes Chamber CEO. "Our Board of Directors made the decision to keep the lights on and the doors open to ensure our businesses in the region are promoted during the largest tourist season and as a warm welcome to our traveling guests."

Meanwhile, the Associated Press has provided a snapshot of Minnesota state government services that would continue, or not, under a government shutdown:


46 state boards and agencies, with minimal staffing at 29 others. Departments with the most staff kept on duty would include Human Services, Corrections, Public Safety and Veterans Affairs.

State funding for many nonprofits including some child care assistance programs. A court-appointed referee will decide whether some social service programs will continue.

Most highway and other state-funded construction projects. Private contracts may have to lay off workers. Emergency highway repairs will continue.

--State parks.

--State lottery.

--State tourism office.

--Many licensing boards for occupations from physical therapy to private detectives.

--Minnesota Zoo, though some staff would care for animals.

--Various state licensing offices, such as for driver's licenses and car registration.


--State emergency/disaster agencies.

--State Patrol.

--Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.

--State prisons and regional treatment centers.

--State tax collections.

--Federally mandated services such as medical assistance or food stamps.

--Payments under the MinnesotaCare health insurance program.

--Unemployment payments.

--Workers compensation claims and benefits would still be processed.

--Veterans homes and programs to help veterans, though claims services would be limited.

--Health and safety inspections of health care facilities.

--Food safety work.

--Workplace safety enforcement for high-risk employers.

--State payments to cities, counties and schools.

--Skeleton staffing in governor's office.

--Funding for Legislature, including a special session.

--Security at state buildings.

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  • by Joe Location: CF on Jul 4, 2011 at 11:15 AM
    Thanks Gov Dayton for standing up to the big money repubs
  • by Mike Location: E.C. on Jul 1, 2011 at 04:02 PM
    All State workers will still receive full pay and bennies for any work missed. Union rules.
    • reply
      by Me Five on Jul 2, 2011 at 01:25 PM in reply to Mike
      That's good because I don't think they shut down the state.
  • by Ralph Location: Eau Claire on Jul 1, 2011 at 03:38 PM
    In any government shutdown, the first thing to stop should be politicians pay.
  • by Darin on Jul 1, 2011 at 02:21 PM
    Can somebody please help with this, I'm trying to figure out how Mn has a two year budget proposal of 36 billion dollars with a total population of 5.2 million people, while WI has a 66 billion dollar two year budget with 5.6 million people. Can somebody come up with a good reason why there is such a difference?
    • reply
      by Bob on Jul 1, 2011 at 03:58 PM in reply to Darin
      Simple answer, Doyle! But Walker is trying to correct the mistakes of the past.
    • reply
      by Mike on Jul 1, 2011 at 04:03 PM in reply to Darin
      Welfare and social programs(Welfare).
      • reply
        by Me Four on Jul 2, 2011 at 01:24 PM in reply to Mike
        Yeah, Minnesota doesn't have welfare and social programs!!!!
  • by MARY Location: EAU CLAIRE on Jul 1, 2011 at 12:46 PM
    • reply
      by David on Jul 2, 2011 at 06:39 AM in reply to MARY
      Suc*s when you have enough money (or debts) to Own a camper & Go on Vacations!!
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Jul 2, 2011 at 09:00 AM in reply to MARY
      most reservation money states it is nonrefundable, how nice hey.
  • by Anonymous on Jul 1, 2011 at 12:16 PM
    I feel bad for the average person who like always is held hostage by politics. When it happens to the federal government all the states will freeze up. I bet the founding fathers would spin in there graves if they saw what is going on in this country. But thats just my opinion?
  • by Eau Really Location: Former EC on Jul 1, 2011 at 11:27 AM
    Congrats to Gov. Walker and the Republican legislators for avoiding this in WI.
    • reply
      by Don on Jul 1, 2011 at 11:46 AM in reply to Eau Really
      A shutdown would be far better the the nugget Walker and the Fitzgerald's dropped on Wisconsin.
      • reply
        by Anonymous on Jul 1, 2011 at 04:11 PM in reply to Don
        Then go over to Minnesota and see how that is working for them.
    • reply
      by dans on Jul 1, 2011 at 01:39 PM in reply to Eau Really
      well said!! Looks like one man, Mark Dayton, wants to make the decisions, seeming to forget the state is governed by several groups, not just him.
      • reply
        by Me Three on Jul 2, 2011 at 01:22 PM in reply to dans
        well said!! Looks like one man, SCOTT WALKER, wants to make the decisions, seeming to forget the state is governed by several groups, not just him.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Jul 3, 2011 at 07:12 AM in reply to Eau Really
      What a ignorant comment. Did MN have 100,000 protestors at their capitol building? And every day since?
  • by Kelsey Location: EC on Jul 1, 2011 at 10:23 AM
    Come on over to the beautiful state of WI that is open for business and spend your tourist dollars here!
  • by Anonymous on Jul 1, 2011 at 10:19 AM
    Weigh Stations and rest areas are closed, but why do they have to block off the whole parking lot? would be nice just to have somewhere to pull over and sleep... sheesh
    • reply
      by Bob on Jul 1, 2011 at 04:00 PM in reply to
      It's just the union workers trying to make a point.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Jul 2, 2011 at 08:58 AM in reply to
      Yeah look at truckers, they have to stop and sleep, but MN wont let them, not suppose to park on ramps, but yet can't park in the legal spots, gota love it
  • by Open Location: EC on Jul 1, 2011 at 09:52 AM
    Hey like we said, "Open for Business." Mud ducks come on over to WI to camp, hike & fish. Don't forget to grab some cheese curds as you make your way back home. On Wisconsin!
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