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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Joe McDonald (R)

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Friday, May 26, 2017


Historic tax relief, transportation funding increase are signature accomplishments of 2017

ST. PAUL – Rep. Joe McDonald, R-Delano, is hailing $650 million in tax relief and a significant increase in funding for roads and bridges as the top accomplishments of the 2017 Legislature, which completed its budget work and adjourned early Friday morning.

“People asked us to deliver robust tax relief this year and I am proud we delivered,” McDonald said. “Of course I would have liked to have provided even more relief but, at $650 million, this is the largest tax bill in nearly two decades. This will go a great distance toward lessening the burden for middle-class families, seniors, farmers, small businesses, college students and others.

The Minnesota House and Senate concluded a brief special session by passing the final bills that comprise the state’s 2018-19 budget. In all, the Legislature passed seven bills during the special session: taxes, transportation, state government, health and human services, K-12 education, capital investment and labor standards.

The Republican-led tax bill will mean more than $650 million in tax relief – the largest tax cut in nearly two decades – for Minnesota families in the 2018-19 biennium and roughly $750 million in tax relief in 2020-21.

In addition, Republicans championed and the Legislature approved the largest investment in road and bridge infrastructure in state history, billions more over the next decade for transportation without an increase in the gas tax or license tab fees.

“Those of us in District 29A also can celebrate the increased funding we are providing for roads and bridges,” McDonald said.” We all know Highway 12 needs major improvements and the $300 million increase we provided over the next two years alone will help get things going.”

In all, the Legislature sent 10 budget bills, a $995 million bonding bill and a labor standards bill to the governor’s desk for his signature.

“As my father used to say, if you have a weak stomach watch neither sausage nor laws being made,” McDonald said. “It’s not an easy process and there’s a lot of moving parts and opinions but, in the end, we got it done.”


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