Tuition-free preschool, tax relief headline supplemental budget

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton outlined his supplemental budget plan Tuesday that will set aside more money for targeted tax relief, nursing homes, welfare grants, preschool programs and college aid.

Highlights of supplemental budget

$343 million to give every 4-year-old access to a tuition-free preschool program.

$288 million for a two-year tuition freeze at the University of Minnesota and Minnesota State Colleges and Universities.

Free school breakfasts for pre-K-3 students.

New tax relief, mostly in the form of a working family credit for low- and middle-income families. His administration says 287,000 more families would qualify.

$500,000 to create a task force to study the future of MNsure and health care in Minnesota.

$13 million left unspent.

"This current surplus resulted primarily from more Minnesotans working than ever before, earning more, buying more, and, thus, paying more income and sales taxes," Gov. Dayton said. "Nevertheless, some people now say that we should feel ashamed of our state's economic successes, feel guilty about having a surplus, and ‘give it all back' -- $350 to every man, woman, and child in Minnesota. Well, as I said before, the legislature and governor did just that 15 years ago. They returned the expected surpluses to the taxpayers. Within two years, those surpluses disappeared. It's taken us over a decade to recover from those mistakes."

Read the budget plan at http://mn.gov/governor/images/supplemental_budget_by_the_numbers.pdf

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