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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Linda Runbeck (R)

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Gov's budget plan, unionized day care and more

Monday, March 11, 2013

Greetings from the Capitol!

Week 10 of the 2013 legislative session is underway and the governor’s budget proposal will be at the forefront. Here is an overview of that, along with the latest on a push to unionize day-care and long-term providers:


Two of the governor’s budget bills – jobs and agriculture – will be heard in committees this week. We also expect him to issue a revised budget early in the week, taking into account updated information we received in February’s economic forecast.

The governor indicated Friday he plans to abandon the business-to-business taxes he was proposing. That plan was roundly criticized by Minnesotans. He also may back away from his proposal to broaden sales taxes to include services like auto care, Internet sales, some clothing and more.

It remains to be seen if Democrats in the Legislature will acknowledge tax increases have consequences and back down as well.


A bill to unionize an estimated 9,000 day care providers passed the House Early Childhood Committee last week, despite significant opposition. In addition, the Health and Human Services Policy Committee heard a bill to allow elections that could unionize an estimated 12,000 people who work as personal care attendants. Both plans are raising significant concerns about cost increases and more.

This appears to be a top-down push from the unions. There is virtually no demand from child care providers to form a union. In fact, the vast majority of them oppose forced unionization since it would increase costs and limit access.

Child care providers are small-business owners and should have the right to negotiate rates with parents without interference from outside parties. Government unions should not be injecting themselves into private contracts.

House committee members received some outstanding testimony on this topic. Click here for video clips of testifiers making their case at the Capitol.

I am introducing a bill to make Minnesota more economicall


  • I am introducing a bill to make Minnesota more economically competitive with neighboring states by providing a capital gains exemption to align us with Wisconsin.
  • On Tuesday, same-sex marriage legislation (HF 1054) is being heard in both House and Senate Committees. From the last election, we saw this is an issue that divides Minnesota. We should be focused on issues that unite us like growing jobs and balancing the budget.
  • Also on Tuesday, a bill (HF 92) to raise the minimum wage will be heard in a House committee.
  • The House policy deadline is this Friday, meaning committee agendas will be very full all week long.

I will let you know what develops in St. Paul. Until then, please continue passing along your thoughts on the issues.


Linda Runbeck


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