ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton proposed spending nearly all of the state’s $1.9 billion dollar budget surplus on Tuesday.

Gov. Dayton outlined a series of new spending programs on children, education and families.

“The surplus resulted from more Minnesotans working than ever before,” Dayton said,  “Earning more income. Buying more goods and services, and thus paying more income and sales taxes.”

Dayton is proposing free, all-day, statewide pre-kindergarten for every 4-year-old.

He’s also proposing tax credits for child care and working families, and a huge infusion of cash into colleges and universities to freeze tuition and expand grant programs.

Republicans who control the Minnesota House said they’ll propose a transportation funding plan using the surplus.

There’s also much more spending on rural nursing homes, and more than half on tax relief.

“When you have a surplus, what it means is that the state has collected too much money from Minnesotans,” Republican House Speaker Kurt Daudt said.

 

Pat Kessler

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