The 2018 session came to an end on Sunday. During the final weekend, we passed a compromise tax conformity and education funding bill, a bonding bill, a supplemental bill and a pension bill to the governor's desk for consideration.
The tax plan included federal conformity which protected Minnesota taxpayers, simplified the state’s tax code, and provided the first income tax rate cut in nearly 20 years. It also made available more than $225 million to help students—nearly $100 million more than what the governor requested in his “emergency” school funding request to provide new money and additional flexibility for school districts to address budget shortfalls.
Our supplemental finance bill represented a great deal of compromise with the governor as nearly 70 percent of the “objectionable” policy raised by Governor Dayton was removed or amended. The bill contained shared priorities like ensuring safe schools, repairing roads and bridges, tackling the opioid epidemic, protecting aging and vulnerable adults, and preventing a cut to caregivers of disabled Minnesotans.
Unfortunately, Governor Dayton vetoed both of these bills on Wednesday. His actions will have negative impacts on millions, including the nearly 1 million Minnesotans that will see their taxes go up next year thanks to his vetoes.
Here is a brief list of just some of the people that are affected by Governor Dayton’s reckless veto:
- Victims of elder abuse
- Victims of opioid addiction, and medical professionals
- Victims of distracted driving
- Special education and Head Start students
- People dealing with MNLARS hassles
- Deputy registrars whose businesses are floundering after MNLARS
- People who need mental health support, particularly farmers and students
- Farmers and agribusinesses that need Section 179 conformity for equipment depreciation
- People who live in rural areas without high-speed internet
- Students who need help to afford college
- People who need job training and businesses that need skilled workers
- K-12 students who won’t benefit from school safety funding
- Taxpayers who will have a difficult time filing their taxes next year
- Voters concerned about election security
- Minnesotans concerned about privacy, data breaches, and cyber security
- CPAs and tax professionals who will be dealing with very complex tax filings
- Low-income working families who rely on federal child care subsidies
- New teachers who need licenses, and schools who want to hire them
- Schools that need adjustments to fully fund special education
- Patients who care about transparent pricing for health care and prescription drugs
- People with disabilities, and their caretakers, who would be affected by a 7% cut to the Disability Waiver Rate System
Despite this disappointment, I am still hopeful that he will sign into law the bonding bill and the pension bill. The bonding bill includes funding for the Wadena Readiness Center as well as Highway 10 environmental cleanup.
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