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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Tama Theis (R)

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Capitol Update

Friday, March 28, 2014

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

We are now in the heart of the 2014 session, and the Minnesota legislature is going to be voting on a number of important bills that will greatly impact our state. As your state representative, I would love to hear your thoughts on these initiatives.

You can take my legislative survey here.

Your input is valuable to me, and helps me better represent you at the Capitol.

The Tax Bill and your 2013 Refund

Last Friday, the legislature passed a $443 million tax bill that could affect your 2013 tax returns. The bill, which was signed into law by the governor, repeals the three harmful business-to-business taxes passed last year and federally conforms our state tax code to several federal provisions.

You may be eligible for additional refunds this year. A few of the additional exclusions and deductions include:

  • Mortgage Debt Forgiveness
  • Deductions for Educator Expenses
  • Deductions for Student Loan Interest
  • Deductions for Qualified Tuition and Related Expenses
  • Employer Paid Adoption Assistance
  • Education Savings Accounts

Federal conformity should have been passed last year, and there was even ample time earlier this session to ensure that all Minnesotans filing receive their full refund without issue. Unfortunately, the Senate dragged their feet on passing a bill, and now the MN Department of Revenue is scrambling to implement these changes.

If have not yet filed your taxes, the Minnesota Department of Revenue is asking that you wait until April 3rd so they can update their programs.

If you have already filed and are eligible for more deductions, the MN Department of Revenue will do one of three things:

1.  Fix the return and send a letter explaining what was fixed.

2.  Request more information from the taxpayer so that they can fix the return.

3.  Notify taxpayers that they can't fix their return. If this happens, the taxpayer will need to file an amended return.

The Minnesota Department of Revenue stated it may take a few months to catch up on the returns already filed, but the agency will take care of it. You will not have to contact them further unless they request you file an amended return.

While I am glad that the legislature is fixing some of their tax mistakes from last year, it is unfortunate that they waited this long, creating a hassle for thousands of Minnesota taxpayers.

Constituents at the Capitol

It’s always a pleasure to meet with constituents when they come down to St. Paul. This week I met with several groups, and I appreciate them sharing their thoughts with me on how to make Minnesota better. I hope more of you will be able to come down and visit the Capitol this session!