Gov. Mark Dayton said Monday that the state's improved financial picture will allow him to go back to the drawing board and perhaps curtail some of his tax proposals.
(The Daily Circuit,
The February economic forecast shows a $463 million improvement from November, when the projected deficit for the next biennium was at $1.1 billion.
Gov. Mark Dayton's sweeping proposal to overhaul Minnesota's taxes and raise about $2 billion in new revenue got its first public hearing last Wednesday night. The plan to raise income taxes on top earners and expand the sales tax while reducing property taxes drew passionate reactions.
Minnesota's budget debate kicks into a higher gear on Thursday when state finance officials set the parameters for a process that must conclude by mid-May.
Reaction to Dayton's proposed re-tooling of sales taxes, income taxes and property taxes has been mostly lukewarm, even among his fellow Democrats. Some are already looking at possible options.
Mayors from St. Paul, St. Cloud and several metro area suburbs say Gov. Mark Dayton's proposed budget will help them maintain services without a property tax hike.
A bill that would finance redevelopment around the Mayo Clinic's proposed expansion in Rochester is starting to move through the Legislature.
The patience of business owners is being tried more than ever, as Dayton and the Democrats who now control the Capitol mull a menu of tax increases that would primarily hit company ledgers -- just as most states are going the opposite way.
DFL Gov. Mark Dayton announced his two-year budget proposal nearly three weeks ago, but most of those tax and spending recommendations have not yet arrived in the House and Senate as bills.
DFL Rep. Ann Lenczewski of Bloomington wants to more than double the state's cigarette tax by $1.60 a pack, from $1.23 to $2.83. That's considerably more than proposed by Gov. Mark Dayton, who wants a 94-cents-a-pack increase.
About two dozen Minnesota cities and counties whose sales taxes piggyback on the state's would see a gusher of new money if Gov. Mark Dayton's proposed sales tax expansion prevails.
State lawmakers begin debate on DFL Gov. Mark Dayton's budget this week. Among the many proposals: the governor wants to double state funding for mental health programs in schools. The new money would pay for independent mental health professionals to support existing school programs.
A broader sales tax that will bring in about $1 billion in additional revenue a year is a cornerstone of Gov. Mark Dayton's proposed state budget. The governor is also considering hundreds of millions of dollars in sales taxes that go uncollected because the transactions take place online.
Republican legislative leaders are ramping up their criticism of DFL Gov. Mark Dayton's tax reform proposal.
Some Minnesota business leaders say the governor's sales tax proposal is a terrible idea that would hurt the state's economy.