At Issue: Jan. 14 — St. Paul City Council history, Cost of the free school lunch program

At Issue – Jan. 14

In this week’s edition of At Issue, Tom Hauser covers the cost of the free school lunch program, history made in the St. Paul City Council and a preview of the 2024 Iowa Caucus.

So far, a dozen members of the Minnesota House of Representatives have announced they will not run for reelection. Former House Speaker Kurt Daudt is among the highest-profile of those either stepping down soon or not running again next year. With the governor and state Senate not up for reelection this year, the only hope for Republicans to win some power in state government is in the Minnesota House.

Another departure this year is in the Minnesota Supreme Court with Associate Justice G. Barry Anderson facing mandatory retirement when he turns 70 in October but says he will step down May 10.

The program to give Minnesota students free breakfast and lunch is far more popular — and expensive — than expected. It’s projected to be close to $200 million over budget for a four-year period.

A new report from the legislative auditor shows the state is making progress in increasing wages for Minnesota state troopers, but their pay continues to lag behind many police departments.

For the first time in its 170-year history, the St. Paul City Council is made up entirely of women. The council, who are all under the age of 40, were sworn in last week.

On political analysis, Annette Meeks and Brian Melendez discuss the Iowa Caucuses, Dean Phillips’ presidential run and the cost of the free school lunch program.