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Book carts are filled with Library materials in the halls of the Minnesota Capitol, getting ready to move into the new reading room.For the past few weeks, the Legislative Reference Library has been on the move - packing up and moving from our long-time space in the State Office Building in light of the building remodeling and expansion project. Our books, reports, and legislative committee minutes now have a new home!

Some parts of our collection - notably our reference materials, specialized resources on the history of the Legislature, and the Journals of the House and Senate - are now found in our temporary reading room space in 321 Capitol. Here you'll also find tables and chairs, a couple public computers, a rotating art collection, and plenty of sunshine. Librarians will be staffing the space, so it's a good place to stop in with any reference or research questions. You can continue to find library staff in our MSB Library location, too!

The rest of our collection is stored in basement rooms in the Capitol. While these rooms are only accessible by Library staff, we can quickly retrieve any item you may need. Notably, these basement rooms include our legislative committee minutes collection - an invaluable and rich resource of legislative history. 

While we continue to make more and more resources available digitally, if you need anything in print, just let us know and we'll head to the basement to get what you need!

Photo: Copyright Minnesota House of Representatives. Photo by Andrew VonBank.

You're invited to an open house reception to say goodbye to the Library's 6th floor reading room! Join us on Friday, April 5 from 3-4:30 for light refreshments, and to see the space one last time before we move on April 29. We'll also be recognizing Lisa Knoop's retirement after 39 years of service in the Library!

In May, come visit our temporary reading room in 321 Capitol. Staff offices will be located in the Centennial Office Building (1st floor). And you can still find us as usual in 3238 Minnesota Senate Building.

Since 1985, the Legislative Reference Library has made its home on the 6th floor of the State Office Building and leaving the 6th floor reading room is bittersweet!

From this hub, librarians have helped countless legislators and legislative staff with research, provided weekly tours to the House high school pages, and welcomed researchers, lobbyists, and citizen activists from across the state. The reading room has also served as a special event space over the years, hosting new member receptions, retirement parties, Minnesota’s presidential electors, NCSL conference sessions, and the UMN Regents.

The Library’s first home was the Capitol, and we’re looking forward to returning to our roots for a while. We'll have another new reading room space to look forward to when construction is complete on the State Office Building!

In 2023, the Legislature created many new state agencies, boards, task forces, working groups, and commissions, which the Library tracks in our Agency Database. Many of these groups are required to submit a report to the Legislature. This month’s issue of Just In will feature reports from some of these new groups: 

The PFAS Manufacturers Fee Work Group’s goal was to review options for collecting a fee from manufacturers of PFAS in the state. Their recent report, Fee Collection Options for PFAS manufacturers in Minnesota (February 2024), reviews environmental fee structures currently in place, and outlines ways fees might be assessed for PFAS manufacturers. 

Working groups do not always come to consensus, and when that happens a group might issue both a primary report and a minority report, reflecting those differences of opinion. The Clean Transportation Fuel Standard Working Group, tasked with studying and addressing issues related to a clean transportation fuel standard, issued two reports in February:  

The Task Force on Psychedelic Medicine published their first of two required reports this month, Psychedelic Medicine Task Force: Legislative Report (February 2024). This report provides an overview of the initial work performed by the task force, and describes their plan for the next year. Their second report is due in January 2025.

If you are searching for a specific report or waiting for a mandated report, let us know. We can set up an alert to send you the report as soon as it arrives. Please contact us with questions or for research assistance at: or 651-296-8338.

A Companion to the United States Constitution and Its Amendments book coverAs the state documents depository, the Minnesota Legislative Reference Library’s collection focuses primarily on state issues. However, the library also collects federal-level information that can be useful to legislators and legislative staff.

New this month are a few books that will give you a greater understanding of the U.S. Constitution. A Companion to the United States Constitution and Its Amendments delivers a short summary of each article of the Constitution, followed by in-depth chapters about the historical context of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. This book also includes a nice timeline highlighting key moments in constitutional history - from 1215 when King John I signed the Magna Carta, to 2021 when Speaker Nancy Pelosi called on Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the Twenty-fifth Amendment.

Another book that’s new to the Library this month is the six-volume Encyclopedia of the American Constitution. Although this book is not brand new (it was published in 2000), it replaces and updates our 1986 edition. This book is arranged in traditional encyclopedic fashion, with articles about topics relevant to the U.S. Constitution. You’ll find topics such as labor and the antitrust laws, DNA testing and genetic privacy, deliberative democracy, and many articles about Supreme Court cases.

You can stop in to the Library on the 6th floor of the State Office Building to take a look at these reference books. As always, please contact us with questions or for research assistance: or 651-296-8338.

Cover of the 2023 Fiscal ReviewThe Senate Counsel, Research, and Fiscal Analysis annual publication, Fiscal Review, is one of the most heavily used publications in the Legislative Reference Library. The Library’s paper copies are lovingly worn and the digital archive, reaching back to the first publication in 1975, is an invaluable resource. 

A new issue of Fiscal Review was published last month, and provides detailed coverage the budgetary actions in the 2023 legislative session. This year's issue is much longer than those in years past, for two primary reasons. A bevy of budget bills passed this year, including the 2023-2024 state budget and large new programs like adult-use cannabis and paid parental leave. The other reason for this issue's length is a focus on improving the usability of this invaluable publication. 

Several style changes were made this year, including: a different font type and size, increased line spacing, and a revised table format. Editors reduced the use of acronyms to provide greater clarity for readers, and included a QR code so that someone holding a physical copy can quickly open a PDF version.

To celebrate the recent release of the 2023 edition of Fiscal Review, the office of Senate Counsel, Research and Fiscal Analysis and the Legislative Reference Library invite you to the Legislative Reference Library's space on the third floor of the Senate Building (3238 MSB) on Wednesday, November 15th at 1:00pm. Cookies will be served!

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