Minnesota’s projected budget surplus swelled Friday to $1.233 billion, giving lawmakers more leeway to pursue tax cuts and increased spending this session. State finance officials released the updated outlook that showed the surplus is $408 million higher than what was projected a few months ago.
Republican leaders in the Minnesota Legislature say the $1.2 billion budget surplus is no cause for celebration because it shows state government overtaxes its citizens. Republicans unveiled their response Friday to news of the enhanced surplus: “Give it back.”
Democrats who control Minnesota’s House and Senate agree a $1.2 billion surplus is likely to make for an easier legislative session, but there’s not agreement yet on how much to spend, save or rebate to taxpayers. House Speaker Paul Thissen says he wants to move quickly on more than $500 million in tax relief.
A $500 million package containing middle-income tax cuts and the repeal of some business taxes is zooming through the Minnesota House. Only three days into their session, House Tax Committee members approved the plan Thursday.
A sudden vote Thursday left a bill containing $20 million in emergency heating assistance one step from Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton, who could have it on his desk by day’s end. The Senate voted 65-0 to send a revised measure back to the House.
State Rep. Pam Myhra says she is giving up her legislative seat to be the running mate of Republican Marty Seifert because she sees him as a strong conservative who can win the governor’s race. Seifert named Myrha as his lieutenant governor candidate Thursday.
The growing popularity of smokeless electronic cigarettes has Minnesota lawmakers weighing whether they should be regulated in similar fashion to traditional tobacco products.
A political coalition pushing for a minimum wage increase in Minnesota is rallying in the Capitol rotunda as the new legislative session gets underway. House Speaker Paul Thissen and Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk are scheduled to speak at the Tuesday event sponsored by the Raise the Wage Coalition.
The Minnesota House quickly passed a bill Tuesday to send emergency heating aid to people suffering through the brutal winter, setting a rapid pace on the first day of what could be a quick legislative session.
The Senate Majority Leader talks with Dave about the start of another session. Click the above link to hear the highlights …..
Day one of the 2014 session is here. Listen to Blois preview the session by clicking the link above!
Minnesota lawmakers flock back to the Capitol on Tuesday for a legislative session expected to run 12 weeks at most. Having set the two-year budget last year, lawmakers face a shorter list of legislation they must consider this time. And it’s always easier to get in the way of proposed laws than to enact them.
Some of the people shoveling snow earlier today had skates on. They’re the ones keeping the Red Bull Crashed Ice Course clear for the competitors.
Nearly 80 percent of Minnesota’s high school seniors graduated last year, the highest number in the last 10 years. That’s according to a report released Wednesday by the Minnesota Department of Education. State education officials said Minnesota’s graduation rate went from 77.6 percent in 2012 to 79.5 percent last year.
A coalition of transportation, business and labor interests proposes a new 5-percent sales tax on fuel in Minnesota to help raise money for new transportation projects. The $750-million-a year roads and transit plan from the group calling itself Move MN is being unveiled Tuesday at a legislative hearing.