Monday was Veterans Day on the Hill and approximately 50 veterans and supporters from District 10B were in St. Paul to advocate for veterans priorities at the Legislature. A number of veterans-related bills were presented to committees that day, including one I authored to add a veterans’ status check-off box to state agency appointment applications. That bill was approved by the House Veterans Affairs Division and now moves on to the next stages in the process.
The bill (H.F. 3507) does not directly benefit an appointee applicant, appointments remain merit based. However, noting whether the applicant is a veteran helps better track how veterans fit into our state agencies, boards, councils, commissions, and task forces. The state currently collects statistical data on a voluntary basis from individuals that apply for appointments to Minnesota’s over 200 state-level citizens’ groups. That voluntary information includes items such as age, gender, disability status, race and other information, however veterans’ status is not one of the data points being collected.
I greatly appreciated the support Secretary of State Simon provided on this bill, not to mention the huge crew of veterans we had from the district making their presence felt in St. Paul.
That was one of several bills that I presented before committees hearings this week. Others included:
We received Gov. Dayton’s State of the State Address Wednesday evening. I was pleased to hear he is committed to properly reconciling Minnesota’s state income tax policy with the new federal tax reforms that will take effect for taxes paid in 2019.
I have already received comments from several of you on this subject. Our tax experts are working on this complicated matter. We are doing our best to ensure we modify state income tax policy in a manner that will be revenue neutral and fair to our citizens.