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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Jim Nash (R)

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Friday, May 26, 2017

ST. PAUL, MN—On Friday, the Minnesota House of Representatives concluded the special session, passing the final bills that comprise the 2018-2019 biennium budget. In all, the House passed seven bills during special session: Taxes, Transportation, State Government, Health and Human Services, K-12 Education, Bonding, and Labor Standards.

“With a large budget surplus, we heard loud and clear that Minnesotans wanted tax relief and funding for roads and bridges,” said Rep. Jim Nash, R-Waconia. “We were able to work with the Senate and the governor to deliver both of these priorities in a big way. I’m proud of all we accomplished this session, and look forward to our residents benefiting from our new budget.”

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 2018-2019 biennium and three-quarters of a billion dollars in tax relief in the 2020-2021 biennium. It includes relief for seniors on social security, college graduates with student loan debt, and property tax relief for farmers and Minnesota businesses. In addition, Republicans championed and the legislature approved the largest investment in road and bridge infrastructure in a state history without an increase in the gas tax or license tab fees.

Rep. Nash authored a number of provisions that were passed as part of the budget bills including:

  • No maintenance costs of SWLRT estimated cost savings of $35 million dollars every biennium

  • Changing eminent domain law to save taxpayers $25-30 million along the proposed SWLRT line

  • Creating "Start Seeing Motorcycles" license plates

  • Banning plastic bag repeal

  • Interim ordinance reform so housing projects are more transparent when working with cities

  • MN.IT (MN IT department) reform

  • State auditor reform

  • Legacy funding for Andrew Petersen Farm renovation

  • Small distillery language that further allows craft distillers to see their business thrive

  • Magnifying scopes on muzzleloaders

  • Premium cigar tax repeal a bipartisan effort to repeal a very regressive tax and reduce the tax per cigar from $3.50 to $.50

During regular session, the legislature passed budget bills for Public Safety, Higher Education, Jobs & Energy Affordability, Agriculture, and Environment and Natural Resources. Altogether, the legislature is sending ten budget bills, a $995 million bonding bill, and a labor standards bill to the governor’s desk for his signature.