Dayton unveils supplemental budget proposal

Governor Mark Dayton is proposing changes to Republican-supported tax breaks passed last year while giving more money back to Minnesota families. He revealed the details Friday as part of his supplemental budget proposal.

“I’ll warn you in advance,” said Gov. Dayton. “This is complicated.”

A big part of his supplemental budget are complex tax changes. His administration says they are needed because of the federal tax overhaul.

“If the Minnesota Legislature does nothing to respond to the 2017 federal tax law, 300,000 Minnesota families will pay a total of over $359 million more in state taxes,” said Revenue Commissioner Cynthia Bauerly.

Dayton proposed $316 million in income tax cuts, which would affect about two million Minnesotans.
But with the proposal, he wants to repeal Republican tax breaks from last year that led him to veto the Legislature’s funding and landed them in a court battle.

“I want to see their tax bill,” said Dayton. “They’ve been waiting for mine, that’s fair. Now, I want to see their tax bill.”

As for spending, he proposed $226 million total. It includes $21 million for school safety improvements, $13 million to fight the opioid epidemic, $12 million for elder abuse and establishing an $11,000 assisted living facility licensing fee to pay for oversight and $10 million to fix the MNLARS licensing system.

In a statement, GOP Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka called Dayton’s plan “too complicated.”

“It raises taxes,” said Gazelka. “It doesn’t take responsibility for the failed DMW system, but increases fees to pay for it.”

Dayton disagrees, saying not fixing it is not an option.

“I’ve apologized to Minnesota taxpayers for the additional cost,” said Dayton. “It’s an enormous system.”