To the Editor:
With the legislative session halfway complete, we recently released our budget targets in the Minnesota House. Those targets work as a roadmap for the House Finance Committee, which I chair, and its divisions to put together the state budget. They reflect what House Democrats promised last November; better schools, better health care, and permanent property tax relief. We said that we would stick to the basics, now we're delivering on them.
The targets provide K-12 schools with enough new investment for a stable increase in the state's funding formula and provide voluntary all-day kindergarten. The budget targets also make health care more accessible by putting Minnesota on the path to covering the 70,000 children without health insurance by 2012.
Finally, we stop the property tax increases Minnesotans have seen since 2003. Property taxes have gotten so bad that a recent state study showed middle-income earners now pay a higher percentage of their income in taxes than wealthier Minnesotans.
We are devoting $535 million to across the board property tax relief. We do this by creating a new income tax bracket for married couples that make more than $400,000 per year after deductions and individuals making more than $226,000 after deductions. Every penny of revenue generated from the new bracket for the wealthiest Minnesotans will go towards property tax relief for everyone.
I'm looking forward to helping move these proposals forward. Please don't hesitate to call me at 651-296-4255 if you have any questions about these or any other legislative issues.
Rep. Lyndon Carlson represents Crystal, Robbinsdale, and Golden Valley in the Minnesota House and Chairs the House Finance Committee.