Gov. Dayton’s revenue plan has come under much scrutiny since being unveiled, particularly by the business community. The “business to business” sales tax expansion is causing the most heartburn among the business community. Several House DFLers have expressed opposition to that portion of the plan. If that portion of his plan falls by the way side the question is what else from his plan unravels? Most likely the property tax rebate of $500 per homeowner that comes at a cost of $1.4 billion is the next domino to fall.
The Governor will continue to defend his plan and won’t make any adjustments until the February state budget forecast is released on Feb. 28. The challenge to the DFL majorities is to find enough revenue to close the deficit ($1.1 billion) and then find the additional revenue they need to investment in their budget priorities.
Repaying the payment shift, funding all day, every day K, and property tax relief appear to be the current list of priorities as it relates to K-12. The Governor’s budget invests about $300 million into K-12 education which translates into 1% in the next fiscal year and 3% in the second fiscal year. This amount is hardly sufficient for schools to deal with increasing costs or to even think about expanding early childhood or student support services.
Let your legislator know what these modest increases mean for your district.