Senate Republicans were critical of Gov. Mark Dayton’s budget announcement today, pointing out the massive increases in taxes and spending without any real reforms in education and healthcare.
Gov. Dayton’s budget proposal increases state government spending to $42 billion for the next two years, a 23% increase since his first budget in 2011. That represents $1500 in new spending for every man, women and child in the state of Minnesota in just the last two budget cycles.
“A budget announcement should be an opportunity for a governor to present a vision for the state, but Gov. Dayton simply added more spending to current government programs and raised taxes to pay for it,” said Senate Republican Leader David Hann (Eden Prairie). “There is no plan for fixing his MNsure initiative, no tax reform and no budget reform of any kind.
Senator Hann also pointed to the Governor’s inaugural address in which Dayton promised not to spend more education dollars on what is being done now.
“We’ve been using this ‘throw more money at it’ approach to education for decades and it hasn’t worked. Gov. Dayton is proposing more money for education to do the same things that produce the largest achievement gap in the country. Where is the education reform package? Where are the new ideas?”
Last week, Republicans proposed the Retire in Minnesota Act (RIMA), eliminating the state income tax for Social Security income. Over the next several weeks, Senate Republicans will present more of their vision for the state through a series of policy reform announcements.