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Associated Press, Published April 18 2012

Minnesota Senate OKs abortion clinic fees, inspections

ST. PAUL — The Minnesota Legislature is closer to sending the governor two measures that would tighten requirements for abortion providers in the state.

The Senate approved a bill 43-23 Wednesday that would have abortion facilities pay a $3,712 annual license fee and undergo yearly inspections. The House earlier passed a bill 80-48 that would require a physician to be in the room when a woman takes an abortion-inducing drug.

Supporters say the regulations will provide extra safety for patients and needed oversight at the facilities. Opponents argue that the regulations will complicate the medical process for providers and women who seek legal abortions.

Gov. Mark Dayton, who supports abortion rights, is unlikely to sign either bill.

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