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Minn. Lawmakers In Rare Agreement On 2nd Round Of Tax Cuts

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(credit: CBS) Pat Kessler
Pat Kessler knows Minnesota politics. He's been on the beat long...
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ST. PAUL (WCCO) — There was something a little different going on at the Minnesota State Capitol Tuesday: Lawmakers seem to be in agreement on a major bill. It means a second round of tax cuts could be heading your way.

State lawmakers already passed income tax relief on the way to hundreds of thousands of middle income Minnesotans. Now, homeowners and renters are getting a break.

“I hear from both homeowners and business owners that the hardest thing is paying my property taxes. My income taxes, I only pay when I’ve got an income. My property taxes, I am paying anyways,” Rep. Jim Davnie, D-Minneapolis, said.

The second round of tax cuts targets 500,000 homeowners: An average 2014 property tax refund of $837. Also, 350,000 renters get a bump, too, with an average renter’s credit of $643. And 90,000 farmers get an property tax cut of $410.

This tax bill is not just about refunds. There’s targeted tax relief for counties to fight the spread of aquatic invasive species in Minnesota waters.

For tobacco and alcohol retailers, no more speeding up tax payments when the state needs help to fix budget deficits.

Unusual at the Capitol: This major legislation is notable for its political harmony.

“When the democrats start talking about tax cuts, I’m all in,” Re. Greg Davids, R-Preston, said.

However, some republicans have complained that Democrats raised taxes last year, only so they could cut them now. But GOP tax experts say this bill is fair and balanced.

“Now it’s certainly not a smoking hot tax bill, but it’s smoldering. You don’t want to get too close because you could get burned,” Davids said.

The legislature will take a final vote on the new round of tax cuts later this week.

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