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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Chris Swedzinski (R)

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Legislative Update from Rep. Chris Swedzinski

Friday, February 15, 2013

Tax Conformity Bill Approved

This week, the Minnesota House approved bipartisan legislation that conforms Minnesota’s individual income tax and corporate franchise tax to most federal changes enacted since April 14, 2011, for the tax year 2012 only (HF6). Passing this legislation will prevent many Minnesotans from having to amend their tax returns in the future, and provides middle-class tax relief. As Minnesotans have now received their W-2’s and other year-end tax returns in the mail, it was critical for the Legislature to take quick action so residents would not encounter delays in receiving their tax refund.

Tax Law for Canby

My legislation authorizing a tax increment financing district (TIF) for the City of Canby is moving forward at the request of local city officials and auditors. This is necessary to help Canby recover lost costs after the developers of a residential subdivision went bankrupt and left taxpayers to pick up the tab.

Dayton Snowbird Tax

Florida Congressman Trey Radel authored a guest column in a Florida newspaper thanking Governor Dayton for his proposal to tax residents that travel to warmer climates during part of the year. In his letter to Dayton, Radel said the following: “Economic freedom coupled with a limited, efficient government has made this country strong for generations and provided more opportunity than any place on Earth for more than 200 years. In Florida, we hope to carry on that tradition, and in Southwest Florida, we look forward to seeing many more Minnesotans in the near future.”

State Economy Continues Improving

A supplemental economic report last week showed Minnesota’s state revenue collections continue to surpass previous projections, with $140 million more than expected in January. This is on top of the $2.5 billion in combined surplus revenue shown in the three full reports dating back to November of 2011. We will receive another full report later this month, a key component to shaping our new two-year state budget. The improvements Republicans made during 2011-12 are working and continue to provide positive economic results. We can balance our budget by simply limiting spending to within the projected 3-percent growth. Instead, the governor proposes $3.7 billion in tax increases that would impact all of us – potentially setting back our economic recovery – in order to fuel unrestrained government spending.

Higher Education Purchases Bill

HF517 is a bill I am carrying with the support of both Republicans and Democrats to provide a mechanism for colleges and universities to utilize private money to make capital purchases. Specifically, the purchases would be for new equipment that helps train students to fill jobs that are currently unfilled. Thousands of jobs in rural Minnesota are currently vacant because not enough graduates have the technical skills necessary to take them on.

Submit Land for Sale or Exchange

The Environment and Natural Resources Policy Committee will be assembling the Omnibus Lands Bill during its March 6th meeting and will be hearing the DNR's bill and all members' land sales bills during this hearing. I am encouraging counties to contact me if they have any land sale or exchange that might need to be approved by the Legislature so I can pass it along to the committee. Land bills are primarily meant to allow the state and counties to sell or exchange property that is no longer deemed of value for the public. In some instances, when land borders or is adjacent to a public body of water the sale needs to be approved by the legislature. There are other special conditions that require legislative approval as well.

Please feel free to contact me with any thoughts or concerns you may have. I can be reached at 651-296-5374 or by e-mail at


Rep. Chris Swedzinski