January 22nd was budget unveiling day at the Capitol, as Governor Mark Dayton released his proposed budget for the 2014-15 biennium. The Governor’s budget seeks to erase the projected $1.1 billion deficit, as well as pay back the $1.1 billion still owed to the schools.
“The Governor’s proposal is a starting point for the Senate’s budget discussions. We are long overdue for an honest discussion of how we should pay for the necessities of state government,” said Senator Kevin Dahle. “I look forward to having public hearings, town hall meetings, and working with my fellow Senators to amend and improve the Governor’s budget.”
Governor Dayton’s proposal includes direct property tax relief for Minnesotans, with a state tax rebate up to $500 and an overall $1.4 billion reduction in property taxes. The Governor’s budget also increases funding in education, including K-12 and higher education.
“During the campaign, I emphasized the need for property tax relief and a restoration of full education funding. I’m glad to see Governor Dayton prioritize these two issues. During the next few months, I will work hard to promote fairness and equity in our tax and education systems.”
“I think Minnesota has needed tax reform for some time and I think there's a little bit of something for everyone to like in this budget. I also like some of the key areas the Governor has decided to invest in, and it's good to see local government aid coming back to our cities and our counties. It's good to see the investment in early childhood education and all day kindergarten, so overall I was pretty pleased with the Governor’s budget.”