The Minnesota Senate has approved a series of bills that keep state colleges and universities and the Minnesota Zoo open in the event of another state government shutdown. Republican Senator Gary Dahms of Redwood Falls says that they passed 3 good bills dealing with keeping such services open. Democratic Senator Kathy Sheran of Mankato argues that continuing funding for certain state programs during a government shutdown encourages the two sides to not resolve their differences, however. She is trying to get a hearing on her bill that would suspend lawmakers’ pay during any shutdown. Meanwhile, Madison Lake Republican Senator Al DeKruif is also sponsoring bills that would continue funding for state parks, rest areas and the State Lottery during a government shutdown.