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Senate passes bills to ease shutdown pain

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Senate has passed bills that would keep state parks open and the State Lottery operating in future state government shutdowns.

The bills passed Thursday on largely party-line votes with Republicans in favor and Democrats opposed. Republican Sen. Al DeKruif (duh-KRYF') sponsored the bills in response to last year's three-week state shutdown that closed parks and shuttered the lottery among other disruptions.

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