Before we get to this week’s legislative news, Linda and I wish you and your family a safe and enjoyable Memorial Day weekend as we pause to solemnly honor the gallant men and women of our armed forces who gave their lives to defend our freedom.
First this week it has been disappointing to see Gov. Dayton veto the tax conformity/school funding bill and the supplemental budget bill. His veto inflicts unnecessary pain and major tax increases and headaches on millions of Minnesotans.
Here are just a few of the real people that were thrown under the bus.
- Victims of elder abuse & opioid addiction – vetoed fixes for these problems areas
- Victims of distracted driving – vetoed strengthening penalties
- People with disabilities, and their caretakers – vetoed fix to federal 7% cut to the Disability Waiver Rate System
- Citizens & deputy vehicle registrars – vetoed help with dealing with MNLARS hassles
- Farmers and businesses – vetoed Section 179 conformity for equipment depreciation
- Rural residents – vetoed funding for high-speed internet expansion
- K-12 students – vetoed school safety funding, support for Head Start and Special Education programs
- Minnesota Taxpayers – vetoed a fix that was fair to everyone, now a large number of Minnesotans will see major increased in their next year’s state income tax bill
- Low-income working families – vetoed state help on federal child care subsidies
- Patients – vetoed transparent pricing for health care and prescription drugs
On a more positive note this week we and the governor did get a few things done.
- IRRR Board Meeting – approved next year’s budget and making infrastructure awards to local governments including $130,000 to the City of Aitkin for work on storm water system problem.
- Gov. Dayton – signed legislation creating 16 years of regulatory certainty when cities build new or upgrade their water treatment plants
- Gov. Dayton – signed legislation updating the Cuyuna Country State Recreation Area Citizen’s Advisory committee organization
Important items yet to be resolved with Gov. Dayton
- Has on his desk revised wild rice sulfate legislation which passed with broad bipartisan support on votes in the House 86-42 and in the Senate 39-28
- Has on his desk a bonding bill to establish regional mental health treatment centers and three new veterans homes
To contact the governor’s office, call (651) 201-3400 or visit www.mn.gov/governor to send an email. Keep smiling!