On Thursday, House leaders unveiled adjusted budget targets for this session that continues our focus on keeping government spending in line with family budgets. It is important to note that with state government fully funded from last year’s two year budget, we are proposing no net increase in spending in the supplemental finance bills. Instead, much like family budgets, we reprioritize already existing resources to our priorities—things like tax relief and transportation.
As for the big ticket items— negotiations on a final transportation and tax bill are ongoing with the Senate and governor given that both the transportation and tax bills remain in conference committee as they each passed the House last year.
The House transportation plan that I was proud to support would spend $7 billion on roads and bridges over the next 10 years without an increase in the gas tax. This plan is in stark contrast to the Senate and governor’s plan—which calls for a historic gas tax increase. My colleagues and I in the House remain opposed to such a gas tax increase as do the majority of Minnesotans.
For tax relief I am in favor of phasing-out the tax on social security benefits and military pay as well as property tax relief for famers and small businesses, expanded deductions for families, and other items that will bring relief to all Minnesotans.
I want folks to understand that given the news of a decreased budget surplus—from $1.2 billion in November to $900 million in February—the political reality at the Capitol makes it more difficult for the whole of our tax bill to become law. Nevertheless, I will continue to fight hard for the tax relief that Minnesotans so desperately need.
If you have questions or concerns regarding this or any other issue being debated at the Capitol, please do not hesitate to contact me. I can be reached by phone at 651-296-9918
or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Have a great weekend,