Here’s the Walter Mondale/Arne Carlson Framework for a Budget Solution:
The budget impasse is unprecedented and must be addressed as soon as possible. Minnesotans
are suffering, our reputation has been hurt, and our credit rating is endangered.
We reviewed Minnesota’s budget situation, and we reviewed previous reports on Minnesota’s
revenues, expenditures, and budgets.
The following principles shaped our recommendations:
- Everyone in Minnesota needs to contribute to the budget solution;
- The budget should only spend an amount equal to ongoing revenues (no shifts or gimmicks should be used to balance the budget);
- Minnesota needs to consider both revenue increases and expenditure decreases in solving the state’s problems;
- While Minnesota’s spending has slowed in recent years and is not out of control, spending must be slowed from projected levels especially public health care costs;
- Spending reform is necessary to make state spending more productive;
- The solution to this year’s budget impasse should be roughly 70% spending decreases and 30% revenue increases; and,
- The spending in this year’s budget should focus on growing the Minnesota economy.
Our recommended framework for a budget solution:
- Cut state spending $3.6 billion from projections, which results in a biennial budget increase of 3% (or 1.5% increase per year);
- Increase state revenues $1.4 billion as follows:
- Human Services Surcharge $.25 billion
- Tobacco tax increase of $1.29/pack (the Wisconsin current tax rate) $.33 billion
- Alcohol tax inflation increase (from the last time the tax was increased in 1987) $.14 billion
- A temporary 4% increase in income tax liabilities for everyone only during the biennium (Three calendar years.)
- Longer term, the sales tax should be broadened and the rate lowered.
Steve Dille, Co-Chair Wayne Simoneau, Co Chair Jim Campbell
John Gunyou Kris Johnson Jay Kiedrowski
As the state’s most serious government shutdown reaches one week, lawmakers and the governor seem no closer to agreement. Education was the topic of the day as key lawmakers shuttled in and out of chief executive’s office. Republicans said K-12 talks provided “progress” the governor’s education commissioner said “we’re not making any agreements” and Democrats added “we’re at the same place.” One bright spot was the DFL lead on the House Education Committee Mindy Greiling saying “I was please behind closed doors to see how well they (governor and leaders) got along.”