State Worker To Dayton: Skip Road Trip, Get To Work

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Gov. Mark Dayton will hit the road Tuesday morning to tout his budget plan and to criticize Republican lawmakers.

As Minnesota enters day 12 of the state shutdown, there are still no signs that state leaders are closer to compromise. Instead, the two sides once again pointed fingers Monday. Dayton says he will not agree to any more cuts, but he said he’s considering new ways to close the $1 billion gap between him and Republicans.

That includes expanding the sales tax or raising taxes on alcohol and cigarettes. The GOP is against any tax hikes.

Caught in the middle of the lawmaker’s struggle are the 22,000 state workers out of a job. One of those workers is Jane Altendorfer, an accounting clerk at the transportation headquarters.

She says she is frustrated, and she has a lot of places to point the blame.

“I’m a pawn in this chess game of balancing the state budget, and I didn’t ask for it,” she said.

Altendorfer wants the Dayton and the Republican leadership to put aside their differences and get to work on a budget, no matter how long it takes. That means, she said, working all day, all night, every day.

And she especially doesn’t like the Dayton’s plan for a multi-city speaking tour.

“Forget it!” she said. “Get back and get the job done. I mean come on! How can you be on the road when you should be at the Capitol getting the job done?”

Dayton also posted a message on YouTube Monday, saying: “Republicans insist on having it all their way or no way. That’s not responsible or even rational leadership.”

No new talks are scheduled at the Capitol between the lawmakers.

Altendorfer wrote a letter to the Republican leaders and the governor expressing her resentment and her desire to get back to work. She still has her layoff notice.

“As a taxpayer and a state employee, I think they’ve let me down,” she said.

Now Altendorfer is using her shutdown-induced free time to balance her own budget as the longest shutdown in state history continues.

  • Rebecca

    Dayton doesn’t allow free speech on his YouTube videos. Not even a vote up or down. Says a lot about this incompetent governor. Why is this government union employee leech complaining about Republicans? They offered a “lights on” budget extension to keep this woman employed to suck my tax dollars dry. Dayton said no. A balanced budget was offered to Dayton. He said No, I want more money for more welfare benefits.

    • Mike

      It’s the cost of running the government for the people. If you don’t like it here, move. The state of Minnesota’s rich traditions including education, and standard of living were built from strong Democratic policy. It worked great before greedy, immoral, money grubbing Republicans started implementing intransigent extremists positions and mindless governing policy. Go away Republicans, we voted for Gov. Dayton to lead, not have you shut down our government to save 2% of the population from paying their share of taxes!

      • ghy

        No, you move, buddy.

      • dan

        I wish Gov Goofy Eyes would start leading! His tour to bash the Republicans is a waste of time.

      • Bud

        Mike you are an ID TEN T.
        By your reasoning, Dayton should be representing that 2% as well as the other 98%.
        Your post has nothing constructive in it.
        If you cannot contribute truths, then don’t comment.
        Here is something constructive:
        We all use what the government provides, we all should pay. If he needs more money, prove it and tax us all.

      • Chris

        Yep Mike, lets just continue to spend money that we don’t have. While I am at it, I am going to contact my employer and ask them for a 6% increase in pay because I feel like buying more things for my home. The state needs to live within its means and balance the budget based on the income and revenues it has coming in, just like we all have to do in our personal homes. Gov has assured us of one thing – he only wants the job for one term!

      • rokkitman

        Well said, Mike

        • we

          Very well sain Mike!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          • Stacy

            WE-Learrn to spell!!!!

          • JMJ

            Mike, rokitman & we – You all need to read the state constitution. Rebecca is correct our taxes should not be going to welfare. And i suggest you all start working harder and stop being jealous of those who are more successful than you. Dayton is playing class war and you are putty in his greedy little hands. Just remember where your wonderful govenor hides his money!!!

            • Astonished_by_your_beliefs

              People want to pick on the poorest. They seem to forget the wealthy take all kinds of “welfare” from the state. They make their money on the backs of the state and its taxpayers. If they don’t pay their workers enough or provide health and pension benefits, its the state and the other taxpayers that pick up the bill. They use the infrastructure and research in our education systems to grow their business and move their goods. They apply for various loans, grants, other subsidies to promote their business. At least 90% of businesses fail within the first year. So why aren’t you complaining about the money given to small businesses that fail and go bankrupt within the first year.

              • Astonished_by_stupidity

                How about the 99% of freeloaders who are a draw on the taxes paid by those businesses?
                Those businesses also pay workers, who once again, pay the taxes used by those freeloaders.
                Without businesses, there is no tax money.

          • ItsTheSpendingStupid

            Dayton has been disingenuous from beginning. His compromise is like me saying you owe me $1,000,000,000 but I’ll compromise and take half – Just as pointless.

            • rokkitman

              Obviously you have no idea what’s going on here. Apparently the pack of lies, continuously spun by Republicans Koch and Zellers, has you fooled. Dayton, the honest broker in this conversation, doesn’t owe you money. Dayton is doing his best to keep you from paying higher property taxes, health insurance premiums, and a host of other costs, that will be your problem if the Republican budget becomes law. Don’t get it? Study up.

              • Alfred

                You’re funny. The argument about higher property taxes is ridiculous.

                Why is it better when the state takes your money versus when the county takes your money?

                • rokkitman

                  Hmmm, you really don’t get it, do you? OK, I’ll try to make this as simple as possible. Unless you make $1 million a year (clearly, you don’t), Dayton’s budget costs you nothing. The Republican budget, however, cuts off payments to local governments. That means, to continue stuff like police and fire departments, those local governments will raise property taxes. I hope that’s simple enough for you, Alfred, though I fear nothing is simole enough for you.

        • Jake

          Actually, the history is off a bit. Minnesota was a “conservative” state through the 60s (before the Republican and Democrat labels were applied), which is in large part the renaissance of the education system in Minnesota. It is a shame that people disregard the work ethic and industriousness of Minnesotans themselves in creating a great state. If government spending per person was the primary factor in determining the success of a community, Detroit would be Utopia.

          • Waste

            Well said Jake

      • DBB

        Dayton won on a split vote…..Emmer was a poor candidate and Horner’s votes put Dayton in. You say WE voted Dayton to lead. Well, WE voted the Republicans into power in the House and Senate for the first time in decades! WE are getting sick of the spending. I just wish Dayton could show some leadership. I can’t believe anyone could vote for this guy. Doesn’t anyone recall what a joke he was in Washington.

    • Don_J

      Rebecca…actually a judge said “no”. And as for trying to come to some type of agreement, everyday I hear where Dayton make a proposal and he’s shot down because Republicans want ALL OR NOTHING! Minnesota Republicans are playing national politics at the local level, that’s it.

      • bud

        Dayton said all or nothing. He could have passed a balanced budget, could have signed a lights on bill, he could have done many things.

        • Don_J

          When did he say that… or are you just making it up… sure he could have passed a budget if he were willing to let Republicans have their way. Bud… you sound just like a Republican, talking load and saying nothing, you can’t proove a word you’ve said on this board.

  • pretzeldude

    I’m glad I don’t live in Mn. anymore. Dayton sounds like a real idiot.

    • Mark

      We are glad you don’t either, (the majority who voted him into office).

      • dan

        Majority would mean he received more than 50% of the votes. I dont think so…………..

        • Tom

          Dayton doesn’t know what it’s like to work a real job. Makes it hard to run a state.

          • Don_J

            Really… please explain what “a real job” has to do with being governor or running a state? Hell, the only reason most Republican politicians want to get elected is because they’re always crying that because they’ve run some business into the ground that qualifies them for the next step up… government.So what’s your “real job” Tom?

    • Jake

      He is, but then he would take that as a compliment…..

  • Trollmouse

    As President Obama said in his press conference yesterday when he was talking about the federal government’s budget problems, both sides need to give up some of their sacred cows. To imply that this is just Governor Dayton’s unwillingness to compromise, is uninformed name-calling. The GOP legislagtors’ have NOT shown a willingness to truly compromise or give up their sacred cow of “no new taxes.” Governor Dayton is standing firm to support ALL Minnesotan’s, not just the rich ones. Hang in there, Governor.

    • tired_in_MN

      Our Democratic President is not any better at this than our Democratic governor, or our Republican Legislature. When they have the power, they abuse it. Obama JAMMED thru a billion page healthcare bill because he knew he had the votes, before anyone even had a chance to read it. Dayton would do the same thing if he had a democratic legislature. Dayton doesn’t know what its like to live paycheck by paycheck – which is why those public jobs mean nothing to him. Our Trust-Fund-Baby-Governor has no leadership skills – he bought his office and now can’t run it. Embarrasing time to be a Minnesotan, Remember when Dayton was campaigning? He never used his own voice for the campaign commercials – cuz he can’t talk – he can’t lead. RECALL!!

  • wowreally

    he does need to skip the road and get busy. But his interests are important and i understand why he is sticking to his plan. Republicans arent giving anything important and Dayton needs to move also. Leaders compromise and they need to be leaders because this is bad for our state. Both sides Move!!

    • bud

      Wow, you mean meeting Dayton of 99% of what he asked for isn’t something?
      Tell Dayton to compromise for once.

      • rokkitman

        bud, you’re confused. It’s the Republicans who haven’t budged an inch, not since January. Dayton has made offer after offer. All the Republicans know how to say is “No.” There, now you know something you didn’t know this morning. Feel better?

  • Face Reality

    By looking at the postings above, it seems to me there’s a rather obvious solution to the budget problem.
    Take the difference between the two sides and let those who elected Dayton make up the difference. Surely those above who speak of “the majority who elected him” and “Minnesota’s rich traditions built from strong democratic policy” and other of that belief would certainly reach into there own pockets and pay the difference!

    Simple solution. If the state is broke, then those who want more out of it should pay it!

    • Mike Hawk

      Okay I’ll agree to that. How much is my share?

    • Randy

      So the republicans wants 5% budget cut intially, and Dayton wanted a 15% increase. Shouldn’t they go off this info and compromise at 5% increase? Or do they compromise at 10% cause dayton hasn’t budged?

    • Tom

      I like this idea. But people voted him in so he could take “rich” peoples money, not their money.

  • Angus

    Why yell at Gov. Dayton about his actions? He has offered various compromises but the Republicans are stone-walling everything. Their motto is “Our way or the highway” and they are not suffering. Apparently their medical plan is “Get Sick-Die Quick” unless you can afford high cost medical treatment. In the meantime, send your child to a private school to get a good education since we are cutting back on public education.
    Remember, this is the party who claims to be good Christians while going to church every Sunday but they forget those values the other 6 days of the week. Whoops, error, they preach against gays being married claiming it is against their Christian values. Such nice greedy people with no compassion and no empathy for people who are suffering and just trying to survive.

    • Claire

      It goes both ways Angus. Republicans have offered up a Balanced budget but the Gov has stonewalled as he promised to raise taxes on the rich. On the flip side the Republicans have signed a pact to not raise taxes. Why dont they look at items in common and leave taxes alone as neither side will budge.

      State Tax loopholes
      Cutting govt waste
      Take private bids on Govt services to save money
      An overall 5% cut in all programs and services
      Put it to a special vote. Here are the 2 options for a balanced budget, vote for one or the other.

      We have many options that we can all agree on but bashing each side for their promise to the voters is a waste of time.

      • Get facts right

        The republicans did not offer a balanced budget, their budget was depending on Fed money given to states and it not a done deal that we will get that money so they are balancing it on hope, and also in order to tackle the state tax loopholes you are calling for that has to do with taxes because of the tax loopholes the rich get away from paying taxes so you need to raise taxes to get rid of their loopholes.

        • Claire

          Get the Facts Right: Raising taxes does not get rid of tax loopholes. Currently any tax payer can take advantage of loopholes that exist. If we simply close the loopholes this increases the tax roles without raising taxes.
          Simply raising taxes without addressing the spending problems or Tax Lopholes only creates an environment of pushing the envelope when it comes time to file tax returns or income claimed

          • Tonto Kowalski

            Religious pork = Don’t sign the Republicans’ fake attempt at a budget offering.

            Keep religion out of government.

          • bud

            How about the biggest loophole lf all, the high percentage of Minnesotans who don’t pay a dime?

    • rokkitman

      Kevin, before you question the intelligence of others you should at least learn to spell.

  • rokkitman

    It appears the most intelligent comments the Far Right is capable of consist of “you’re a moron” or “the Governor is a moron.” The level of intelligence behind these comments speaks for itself.

    • OldSarge

      You seem to have a short memory for who started all of the vitriole when Bush was in office. You libs can dish it out but can not take it..

  • These people.

    The people who write these comments obviously never benefited from Minnesota’s rich educational experiences. Could it it be these people spent too much time smoking pot, drinking , and partying with there fellow white man trash people??

    • Tonto Kowalski

      “Could it it be these people spent too much time smoking pot, drinking , and partying with there fellow white man trash people??”

      I did all those things, (still do some of them) graduated from a MN college, and make a 6-figure income. Go figure, eh?

  • we

    You need to leave the usa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Stacy

      I think ou need to leave the USA!!!! Go to Europe were your ideas of government fit right in. Oh thats right the EU is going down the tubes from people just like you.

      • we

        @STACY GO AND EAT YOUR DONUTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Dayton + Wilf = bent over taxpayers

    We have an entire herd of buffoons in MN politics, from Gov Crazy Eyes all the way down.

    In other news … just a reminder that Wilf and his cohorts are sleuthing around in the background waiting for the budget crisis to end so they can swoop in and rob the taxpayers of what little will remain of their tax dollars and dignity.

    • rokkitman

      So you Far Right guys have moved on from calling people morons to taking personal appearance cheap shots at the Governor. I guess, for people like you, that’s progress. Congratulations.

      • Well .............

        I have to admit the guv usually looks, talks and acts like he’s half stoned. I suspect all that would be the same even if he was a republican.

    • Tony

      That buffoon comment seems accurate; I’d certainly agree. But the more important point is what it says about the voters who put them there?

  • Tony

    I have a question for the Governor. If the 2010-2011 general budget was $30.1B and the current legislature has offered multiple budgets totaling $34B, how can you honestly stand up in public and say the Republicans are cutting the budget. By my calculations, that is a $3.9B increase over the previous budget which constitutes a 12.95% (virtually 13%) increase. And that over the same 2 years that the federal government declared there wasn’t enough of an increase in cost of living to allow the Social Security or military retirees to have a cost of living increase.

    Sounds like some real fuzzy math to me!!

    • rokkitman

      Tony, you’re misinformed. General fund spending for the 2010 biennium was over $34 billion. The proposed Republican budget is NOT an increase. Unfortunately, the Republicans won’t admit this. That’s the only way they can fool people like you , who believe they’re telling the truth.

  • RR

    If these clowns would put half as much time & effort into working out a deal as they do pointing fingers & blame at each other, they would have had this done a month ago.

    • just saying


    • maggieMn


  • independent

    Talking to one’s constituents is part of the job of the governor. If the Republicans are not ready or not willing to meet, then why not? I am sure if the Republicans stated they wanted to meet he would cancel these town meetings.

  • Who’s talking about budget cuts? « Hot Air

    […] Update: One state worker says that Dayton should skip his driving tour of Minnesota this week and get back to work: […]

  • milsa

    Dayton is out-of-here in 2014

  • J Crum

    As a (previous?) state employee with Minnesota Care, I have been watching the situation unfold for a couple of months now. The impact on the citizens and businesses of this state are devastating. I do have a distinct opinion on the parties most responsible for this shut down. However, it seems to me that meeting for a few minutes at a time while spending MUCH more time in front of a tv camera calling other names is not the answer. Bottom line, we went to work every day, did our jobs, did them well and met our deadlines. WHY can we not expect the same from the state house and senate. We are currently not getting paid, they are continuing to be paid (a few OPTED out). WHY would we continue to pay people who didn’t do their job to continue to NOT do their jobs?
    If a special session is called, it will allow the house/senate to talk as long as they like about whatever they like……come with a plan and get it done. ENOUGH ALREADY!!

    • maggieMn

      Very well said J- There definitely needs to be pressure put to your district representatives.

  • rokkitman

    Old Sarge, you got evidence I ever called anyone a moron? No? Thought not. Far Right Whiners always complain about poor, poor pitiful them, but they can never back it up.

  • Waste

    The republicans have started out:
    • Demanding a cut in government
    • then to holding the line
    • to now a 5.6% increase

    Dayton and the Democrats:
    • 15% increase for 6 months now.
    • 15% increase for 6 months now.
    • 15% increase for 6 months now.

    Who has compromised?

    • rokkitman

      Waste, looks like you missed my earlier post. General fund spending for the 2010 biennium was over $34 billion, more than the proposed Republican budget, even before inflation and population growth.. There is no 5.6% increase. There is no 15% increase. The proposed Republican budget is NOT an increase. Unfortunately, the Republicans won’t admit this. That’s the only way they can fool people like you, who believe they’re telling the truth. Better now?

      • waste

        The point is they are negotiating. If the funds cannot cover the costs, that is a different point.
        To say they not moving is a bold faced lie….

        • rokkitman

          The Republicans haven’t budged from their arbitrary $34 billion number since January. That’s not negotiating, that’s just saying “my way or the highway.” They are NOT moving, and that’s the truth. The funds have to cover the costs, regardless, because the budget is required by law to be balanced. It’s just a question of who pays. Either the Richest 2% take up the slack, or you and I pay, through increased property taxes, increased health insurance premiums, and all the other costs that will be paid, one way or another, either by the State or by you and I. If the Republicans were willing to compromise. So far, they haven’t moved an inch.

  • worker

    To all you government employees, why are you not insisting on a rule of 95 instead of a rule of 90?
    My retirement has been moved from 62 to 67.
    Why doesn’t the rule of 90 change?

  • D Tratumiller

    How can Dayton travel if the state is shut down? Is that from the same fund as the house keeper! Get real end this kids game its the peoples state not the Daytons we are still paying for services we cant use I would like my money back!!

    • rokkitman

      He’s driving his own car. Sometimes you guys make this just too easy ;-)

  • Jake

    A $1 billion dollar gap? I thought it was a $5B gap? No wait, I thought it was a $2B gap, then a $1.8B gap. Earth to dayton: there is no gap. You have about $34 billion to ‘play’ with, and that’s all you are going to get. If you want to fund pre-school babysitting, oops, I mean pre-school, more than welfare, then transfer funds from one dept. to another. If you want to keep proping up the faculty at our universities instead of K-12, then do it. Wisconsin is kicking our butts right now, they are sucking all kinds of lottery dollars away from MN, your punishing the taxPAYING citizens of MN isn’t going to do you much good. Reward the productive, discourage the laziness that is dragging this state into the sewer.

  • Jeff D

    Pleaseeeessss! It’s not about us against them, it’s not Reps against Dems. It’s about getting the job done! Why is it always us against them( Reps aginast Dems)??? It’s childish. You have a time frame to get the laws passed and they didn’t do it. They act like 5 years pointing a finger at the other saying it’s your fault!
    Once elected it’s their job to do their job, and what they are doing now is NOT DOING THEIR JOB – period!

  • Caracol

    Q: What have Somalia and Minnesota in common ?

    A: They currently have no functioning central government, and is being destabilized by religious fundamentalists and anti-government groups partly funded by wealthy people outside its borders.

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