Gov. Mark Dayton's $37 billion budget would shave more than half of the state's $6.2 billion deficit over the next two years by increasing income taxes on the wealthiest Minnesotans, something he pledged to do during last year's campaign.
According to Dayton's office, 95% of Minnesotans will experience no tax increase under the proposed budget. Dayton proposes a new income tax tier at 10.95% for joint filers over $150,000 and head of household filers over $130,000; and a temporary income surtax of three percent for all filers over $500,000. He also proposed a statewide property tax on home values over $1,000,000.
Dayton also outlined $775 million in cuts for health and welfare programs on Tuesday, the Associated Press reported. MinnesotaCare is a state-subsidized health care plan for the working poor, who pay premiums on a sliding scale. It offers less generous benefits than federal health care programs.
GOP State Reps. Tim Kelly and Tara Mack both said Friday they would pay fines levied by Dakota County after an officer cited them for "making out" in a public park, a characterization both vehemently denied.
David Gerson, a Tea Party favorite who has twice challenged Rep. John Kline for the Republican nomination in the Second Congressional District, wasted no time getting his campaign rolling the day after Kline announced he will not seek reelection.