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Continued: Readers write (May 21): Vikings stadium design, Legislature, public pensions

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  • Last update: May 20, 2013 - 7:28 PM

Another session down, and much to criticize

The Legislature may be compared to the board of directors of a corporation that does $40 billion in business every two years.

Can one imagine such a board making its key decisions in the middle of the night, when its members are weary, exhausted, stressed, on edge and facing a firm deadline? The business would not long survive.

This nonsense happens every two years, regardless of partisan control of the Legislature. No wonder the public revolts at the proposal of a pay raise for these “public servants.”

George M. Woytanowitz, Minneapolis

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The May 18 picture of Republican legislators pretending to read newspapers during the bonding debate showed that they are not concerned about unemployed Minnesotans. Their rejection of bonding when interest rates are at the lowest we will ever see lays bare their false claims of fiscal responsibility.

Robert A. Swart, Mankato, Minn.

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Imagine that state-backed construction were to begin for dozens of projects, including new (necessarily needed?) buildings at state colleges and universities; light rail, and regional civic centers.

Architects and other essential technical personnel would be hired. Bidding contractors would be selected, with hundreds and possibly thousands of trade and/or nontrade workers being hired in a job-creation initiative. Staging areas would be set up for assembling materials and equipment. Work would continue for several years until much of it were completed. Layoffs then would begin for all nonessential personnel. Most nonemployees of companies would be dismissed. Hundreds, maybe thousands of jobs would be lost for all temporarily hired workers, who then would flood the state offices to collect unemployment compensation checks. State (borrowed?) funds would cover all costs and/or expenses. Job-creation initiative complete; few if any, permanent jobs created.

Might I suggest that our legislators leave the job-creation issue to corporations, companies and other permanent businesses? Jobs with those entities have much greater success at permanency.

Kenneth A. Hanauska, Rogers

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I’ve always been astonished by the willingness of Republicans (“Showdown over child care’s future,” May 19) to spend time and effort to protect the sacred right of workers to be underpaid, particularly if that underpayment could be ameliorated by unionization.

John Sherman, Moorhead, Minn.

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The lost opportunity to enact tax reform merits an F for both Gov. Mark Dayton and the Legislature. Their failure has consequences for all Minnesota taxpayers, individuals and corporations alike. Tax reform could have put an end to the roller-coaster instability of revenue sources, in addition to reducing disparities between middle class and wealthiest taxpayers and clearing the way for long-term business decisions. But that is not to be. The failure to act is no mystery. It was largely based on polling data and special-interest pressure, making it clear that staying in office is the highest priority for our current crop of legislators on both sides of the aisle and for Dayton as well.

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