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Legislative News and Views - Rep. John Poston (R)

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Capitol Newsletter

Friday, March 24, 2017

Dear Neighbor,


Monday was "Veterans Day on the Hill;" it was amazing to have so many heroes at the Capitol. Thank you to those who have served our country!

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This week, I met with some of our local teachers to discuss education issues that are important to our community.

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The Chair of the 8th Congressional District GOP: Ted Lovdahl and his wife, Marie, were at the Capitol to celebrate their 53rd wedding anniversary. Happy Anniversary to the Lovedahls!

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Thursday was National Puppy Day and we were lucky enough to be visited by a cohort of puppies at the Capitol!

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Budget Proposal:


This week, House Republicans laid out their budget proposal for the next two years; it includes an additional $1.1 billion for our schools, a new plan to fund transportation projects, and a tax relief initiative.


The transportation plan that was introduced invests $6 billion over the next decade, with $2 billion being spent in the next two years alone, without raising the gas tax. I believe that with a $1.6 billion surplus, the Governor and lawmakers should not be proposing to raise your taxes. The bill would be funded through bonds and a re-appropriation of auto-related taxes to be spent exclusively on transportation projects. This bill is a comprehensive and straightforward approach to funding future projects, and I am hopeful for a positive reception from Governor Dayton.


Some key provisions in the bill that benefit Greater Minnesota:


  • Dedicates $25 million of funding over the next two years to a small cities assistance program that allocates money to cities with fewer than 5,000 residents for local road improvements
  • Creates a special fund of $25 million specifically for bridge projects recommended by MNDOT
  • Allocates $35 million for rail grade crossings to improve rail safety
  • Requires counties or the County Transit Improvement Board (CTIB) to fund 100% of operating and future capital costs for light rail.

The tax relief bill that was proposed reduces taxes for Minnesotans by more than $1.35 billion over the next two years.


Some of the bill’s highlights:


  • Reduces the state tax on social security income for seniors
  • Provides more credits and deductions for families saving for post-secondary education using 529 Savings Plans, as well as tax credits for student loan payments
  • Exempts the first $200,000 of property value from the extra tax on local businesses and freezes the automatic inflator
  • Reduces the burden agriculture land owners pay for school bond referendums
  • Conforms the state death tax to the federal exclusion


These bills are currently working their way through the committee process and will be heading to the floor of the House for a vote of the entire body in the near future.



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If you ever have any questions, comments, or concerns regarding any issue related to state government, please feel free to contact me at either 651-296-4293, or



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