ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Gov. Mark Dayton is holding a roundtable discussion at the Capitol to talk about how proposed cuts to state transit programs would impact riders.

The Thursday afternoon meeting will include Susan Haigh, whom Dayton appointed to chair the Met Council. It will include a number of other Twin Cities local government officials as well as transit users.

Dayton has been holding a series of roundtable discussions to highlight differences he has with legislative Republicans who propose cuts to most areas of state spending in order to eliminate a $5 billion budget deficit. Dayton has proposed a mix of spending cuts and new tax revenue.

Democrats have contended that Republican-proposed cuts to transit programs would fall most heavily on the working poor and disabled.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (10)
  1. JB says:

    Wyi is it that no politician can understand that if you continue to spend beyond your means and you can not increase your income, that you will go broke? Fine, leave transit spending where it is at, but then what other program will you cut to balance the budget? This is one big song and dance the only question is, who does not make it in front of the TV’s and thus gets cut?

    1. Walker says:

      The difference comes in what is the level of means. First of the state has to balance the budget so it cannot go broke. The argument the Democrats have is that an increase on the most wealthy would not be a burden. If your argument that you cannot increase revenue more than why would the Republicans be proposing for the stadium an ability for the local agency to add more sales tax? There is a discrepancy in the Republican position.

      1. Matt says:

        I agree with your assertion on the stadium and that the GOP stance is hypocritical. However raising taxes is not the solution, freeze spending and we don’t have a budget problem.

      2. Matt says:

        Does anyone else find it funny that Dayton only holds these little pow wows with supports of the public assistance? Same as the higher education round table last week?

        Why doesn’t this coward bring his positions to the general public that are paying the bills instead of those who are living off the system.

        I ride the bus almost every day and with exception of work commuters it’s almost always empty. There’s NO reason that the number of buses and routes can’t be cut and if it effects me, SO WHAT it makes sense.

  2. whatever says:

    All I know is the moment transit becomes the same price or more expensive than driving then I switch back to driving. Taking the bus is an annoyance to me and the ONLY reason I do it is to save money.

    1. Matt says:

      Don’t you see though, the bus probably isn’t more cost effective than your car it’s just that you don’t pay taxes into the system to subsidizes you driving your car and you do with the bus.

      If the bus system is such a good idea it should be privately run, there should be money made on the system like Southwest Transit does. Instead it’s a government program to encourage ridership to gain government dependance and well be green.

      If you want a bus system in Minnesota GREAT, just make it be cost neutral based on user fee’s like the roads are.

  3. Kevin says:

    This is the position you get into when you spend beyond your means. The question should never get to raise taxes or cut funds to some program. Many…….many of the programs this government has set up and funded should never have been implemented. This government needs to start reducing what it gets involved in. Things like arts, entertainment (stadiums), cultural centers, etc may well be served by donations instead of government funds.

    1. Curtis says:

      Many many program. Like which one. Easy to make those claims. Aid to cities was instituted for property tax relief. Should the state have done it? probably not. The aid the Republicans propose to cut is only Minneapolis, St Paul and Duluth. Is that a fair way to cut? no.

      1. Matt says:

        But Curtis the three cities you listed get over 90% of the aid and only about 40% of the cities in Minnesota get LGA…

        IS that fair?

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