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GOP-dominated legislative fiscal commission will grill commissioners today

The first meeting of this year’s Legislative Commission on Planning and Fiscal Policy is at 2 p.m.

The first meeting of this year’s Legislative Commission on Planning and Fiscal Policy is at 2 p.m. today in Room 10 of the State Office Building.

The 18-member commission — nine state senators and nine House members — are charged with researching and analyzing the state budget, with the goal of straightening out the state’s biennial budget mess.

The GOP-dominated group also says it will compare the governor’s proposed budget solution with that of the GOP’s plan, which Gov. Dayton vetoed last week.

GOP leaders have asked Revenue Commissioner Myron Frans and Management and Budget Commissioner Jim Schowalter to take part in the meeting.

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In a letter to the two commissioners, Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch and House Speaker Kurt Zellers asked them to:

“Be prepared to discuss Minnesota’s current fiscal situation, the governor’s latest budget and the governor’s position on specific provisions in the Legislature’s vetoed budget.

“We’d like information on plans to offset the loss of $1.8 billion in revenue in the governor’s budget due to the recent change in the administration’s tax plan. Specifically, be prepared to discuss the Legislature’s spending reductions the governor will agree to, or new spending reduction proposals.

“On multiple occasions the governor has indicated an interest in exempting small business form the effects [of] his tax increase plan. We are interested in knowing how this proposal changes revenue estimates for the administration’s budget, and what offsets are proposed to allow small businesses [to] keep more of their hard-earned money.”