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Senate approves Dayton's budget, higher ed heads

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — After an extended wait, two of Gov. Mark Dayton's cabinet members are officially in place.

The Minnesota Senate Thursday confirmed Jim Schowalter as the commissioner of the state's budget department, and Larry Pogemiller as director of the Office of Higher Education.

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The previous Republican-controlled Senate didn't take up confirmation of Dayton's appointees.

Schowalter has been on the job at the Minnesota Management and Budget awaiting confirmation for more than two years. Dayton appointed Schowalter to lead the Minnesota Management and Budget Department back in December 2010. He has worked at MMB since 1994.

Pogemiller left the Legislature after 30 years, including four as Senate majority leader, when Dayton appointed him to take over the Office of Higher Education in October 2011.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

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