Recently we had another local high school junior learning more about state government by taking part as a page in the Minnesota House High School Page program. I had a very nice visit with Hastings High School student Julia Ronning and was pleased to see her interest in the legislative process.
TAX RELIEF NEEDED AS MINNESOTA’S BUDGET SURPLUS REMAINS STRONG
An updated state budget forecast continues to find positives in Minnesota’s economy.
On February 27, economic experts projected Minnesota now has a $17.5 billion budget surplus. This takes into account the increased spending that has already been signed into law, as well as inflation which is estimated at $1.42 billion.
Yet again, this is further proof that too much money is being taken from taxpayers. It’s time to provide significant tax relief to Minnesotans.
According to the Minnesota Management and Budget Office, higher collections this fiscal year and higher profits raised the individual income and corporate franchise tax forecast. However, the statutory inclusion of inflation in the spending forecast offsets the gain in resources.
With this surplus, there is no excuse for lawmakers not to fulfill their campaign promises of Social Security tax relief for all Minnesota senior citizens.
It’s very disappointing to see no movement by Democrats on the repeal of Social Security taxation in Minnesota. There’s also been no explanation on how to solve the financial crisis senior citizens are facing with long term care. The priorities of the majority party are not in line with the priorities of Minnesotans.
BONDING PROPOSALS TAKING SHAPE
Talks of a capital investment proposal, otherwise known as the bonding bill, coming to the House floor have begun to intensify. This proposal – which borrows money at low interest rates to help fund construction projects statewide – most often happens during the second year of the legislative biennium.
I was disappointed the House proposal currently does not include funds for the Hastings Ice Arena. The provision is included in the Governor’s plan, but so far it is not in the House or Senate bonding bill. I will keep working to try and convince House leadership to include the arena in its proposal.