Yesterday, legislators met with Governor Dayton to hear from him about his proposed budget. He said he does not expect his proposal to travel through the legislative process unscathed and that he welcomes feedback from me and my constituents on what they like, what they don’t, and what they’d change.
So here’s a chance for Patch readers to weigh in directly with me on the governor’s budget proposal. First, though, I’ve tried to set out below a brief, objective overview of Gov. Dayton’s budget proposal.
Bill Salisbury at the Pioneer Press sums up the tax side of Gov. Dayton’s budget proposal as follows:
“Minnesotans would start paying sales taxes on high-priced clothing, haircuts, car repairs and many other currently tax-exempt services, but they would pay a far lower tax rate than they do now under a dramatic tax restructuring that Gov. Mark Dayton proposed Tuesday, Jan. 22… The bottom line on sales taxes for consumers would be about a wash, but it would mean a significant tax increase for businesses…All homeowners would get a $500 rebate on their property taxes starting next year. State business property taxes would be frozen for two years…The wealthiest 2 percent of Minnesotans would be hit with a 2 percent higher income tax rate…But the corporate tax rate would drop by 14 percent…Those are key components of Dayton's plan for what would be the most extensive overhaul of the state's tax system in a generation.”
On the spending side, in addition to plugging the State’s remaining $1.1 billion deficit, the major beneficiaries of the additional revenue would be schools and job training. There’s more money for early education, per pupil funding in K-12, a more thorough teacher evaluation system, a two-year tuition freeze at the U, and workforce training at the Minnesota State College and University System. There are also cuts proposed in a variety of areas, including the part of the state budget over which the committee I chair has jurisdiction.
Here are some ways to provide me with your feedback on the Dayton budget: 1) post your comments below; 2) give me a call at the Capitol at 296-4192; or 3) email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!