Posted at 1:29 PM on July 13, 2011
by Paul Tosto
From MPR News reporter Tim Pugmire:
DFL Governor Mark Dayton traveled to Rochester today to highlight what he sees as the stakes in the ongoing budget impasse and state government shutdown.
The event at the Rochester Senior Center primarily focused on issues related to health and human services funding. About two dozen participants, including elderly and disabled people, shared personal stories about their use of state services. But Dayton was also asked to explain why he wasn't in St. Paul negotiating with Republicans.
"I've made three proposals, compromise proposals to try to resolve the situation," he said. "I've not in the last 13 days of the shutdown received a single proposal from the Republican side. So, as soon as they're willing to negotiate, I'm ready and willing to do so."
Dayton went on the road for a second day to highlight what he sees as the stakes of the state government shutdown. Much of the discussion focused on health and human services funding. But Republican Representative Steve Drazkowski of Mazeppa urged Dayton to end the shutdown with a special session.
"Governor, we all want to get back to work," he said. "Let's call the session and either do a lights on bill and/or let's agree on the six bills that we do agree on, and move forward so we remove some of the obstacles from society."
The current top income tax rate in MInnesota is 7.85 percent. If you earn a net of a million bucks, your tax is going to be $78,500. Big, right? But, of course, you have $921,500 left to spend. OK. Now the state, as the governor would like to do, raises that tax by 10 percent. That amounts to an additional $7,850. So, we've shut down the government because these rich guys, instead of $921,500 would have only $913,650 to spend. That's $76,137.50 per month, $17,570 per week, $3,514 per day, or $439.25 per hour based on an eight-hour day. $439 an HOUR. (How many of us don't make in a week?) Of course, without the tax increase the net would be $443.03 per hour. And for that we're losing jobs, losing our state's good credit, and going without beer. Wow.