At one level, there is “only’’ $1.4 billion separating Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican legislative leadership in the showdown that has led to shutdown.
So, on a budget that would range anywhere from $34.2 billion (the Republican high-water number) to Dayton’s most recent proposal of about $35.6 billion, what does the difference actually mean?
The governor’s office released a chart Wednesday showing its view of the impact of the differences.
The big difference, not surprisingly, is in Human Services.
According to the governor’s office, the two sides are $556 million apart. That gap, the governor says, would “cause tens of thousands of Minnesotans to lose health insurance.’’
The GOP proposal in the Human Services category would cut women’s primary health care services (family planning) by 50 percent. Additionally, the governor claims the gap would force 1,500 elderly and disabled people to move into nursing homes, rather than received home-based care.
There’s also a $435 million gap in property tax aids and credits between what the governor seeks and what the GOP lLgislature wants.
State government funding also is an area of major difference, with about a $219 million gap, according to the governor’s office.
The GOP budget is “booking’’ $97 million more in revenue than is feasible, according to the Department of Revenue. The GOP proposal also reduces the state workforce by 15 percent, a far deeper cut than Dayton wants. Additionally, the Republican plan would increase insurance premiums of state employees by 30 percent, according to Dayton’s office.
And then there’s another biggie, K-12 education.
Not only is there a $128 million gap between the governor and the GOP but there also are substantial policy differences ranging from integration funding to a grading system the GOP wants to apply to each school, a proposal Dayton opposes.