House GOP on 2011 legislative session

The House Republcan Caucus released this statement on the 2011 legislative session:

Saint Paul – (May 23, 2011) – After gaveling the 2011 legislative session to a close, Speaker of the House Kurt Zellers said a special session is not needed as the $34 billion Republican budget is complete and balanced.

“The question that remains unanswered is just how much you want to grow government,” said Speaker Kurt Zellers (R-Maple Grove). “The Republican budget spends what is in the state’s checkbook, resolves the $5.1 billion budget deficit, increases state spending by 6 percent and reforms a status quo state government. We urge Governor Dayton to sign our completed and balanced budget.”

The Minnesota House and Senate passed their budget bills on May 21. The Republican budget lives within the state’s means by not exceeding available revenue, reverses the unsustainable growth of state spending by cutting $3.6 billion in future spending, and does not raise taxes. It funds the state’s priorities, provides tax relief and holds classrooms, nursing homes and veterans harmless from funding reductions.

“We set priorities. We cut spending. We reformed government. We balanced the budget. We completed our work,” said House Majority Leader Matt Dean (R-Dellwood). “Governor Dayton has a balanced budget on desk. It is very unfortunate he refused to engage in our budget process earlier in session.”

In addition to passing a completed and balanced budget, House Republicans cited permit reform, alternative teacher licensure, photo id, and a green acres solution as their accomplishments this session.

“We did what we said we would do. We balanced the budget without raising taxes, cut red tape, reformed education, health care and the way state government operates,” Zellers said. “We are disappointed to see this good work overshadowed by a special session that does not need to happen.”

Zellers said House Republicans are committed to working with Governor Dayton to resolve the state’s budget problem and hope to expedite negotiations to resolve the budget differences.

“We have and will continue to represent working families, small business owners and the future of Minnesota’s economy in negotiations with Governor Dayton,” Zellers said.

  • danno

    Funny, none of the working families I know and most of the small business owners I know, do not make a quarter of a million taxable dollars per year. On the other hand, all the members of the billionaire boys club at the Taxpayers League do make at least a quarter of a million dollars a year–and many of them make a lot more than that. So Mr. Zellars, who do you really represent?Tell the truth now–you only have to do it once–it won’t hurt.

  • Ralph Crammedin

    The Republicans won the November election with an economic shell game. Recent polls suggest, however, that the public has caught on to the GOP scam. Yet the Republicans keep reciting their phony numbers, as if we’re all still in the dark. Fool me once…

  • Chris

    Danno, are you suggesting that those who make over 250k per year owe those that do not? For all of you who are mad about people making money, have you ever worked for a poor man? Can a poor man pay your salary and health benefits? Before we start accusing the ‘wealthy’ of not paying their ‘fair share’ maybe we should ask ourselves who really pays the bills in this country. Last I checked, almost half the people in the U.S. didn’t pay a dime of federal income taxes. If you think that’s a good thing, then you have a seriously distorted view of how a society should work. We all use the services–we all should pay. I find it very interesting that people who already pay 30+% of their income to the government are looked at as villains, while those who pay nothing are looked at as good Americans who are in further need of unearned support. People used to be proud about taking care of themselves, now it’s all about, “What can I get from you?” It’s shameful, and I have no idea how we got where we are today. This ‘billionaire boys-club’ you keep referencing is a joke. Note this, most of the successful people in the country earned their place—they didn’t inherit it. That’s the American Dream and the evidence of a good society. People won’t work for free, the more you take from them, the less incentive they will have to keep growing. So go ahead, attack the wealthy and successful of this country—they obviously deserve it. They won’t miss it anyway right? I’m sure any money you take from them will just magically reappear—a gift from a deity no doubt. That’s how they got it in the first place right?

  • Ralph Crammedin

    Chris, nice rant, but you coulda saved space just saying “Rich people deserve to be rich and everybody else should support them,” and made the same point. What you’re missing is the whole system is tilted to favor the rich. Could you walk into a bank and borrow $10 million cuz you have a great business idea? Probably not, but Warren Buffet could, cuz he’s rich enough. All the other 95% of us are asking is to level the playing field a little bit. The Rich have plenty of advantages. They don’t need to keep paying lower tax rates than their secretaries pay.

  • Chris

    Ralph, your attempt to draw a comparison between the average joe who walks into the bank to borrow $10 million dollars and Warren Buffet–is amusing. The fact that Warren Buffet is rich and could easily borrow money for a business venture has as much to do with his wealth as it does his track record. That’s like saying the rich get all the good jobs. Alan Mulally is so rich, he ‘get’s’ to be CEO of Ford Motor Company. All those poor recent college grads didn’t get the job–because they are poor. Anyway, that’s besides the point–you assume that your money means more to it than someone who makes more than you–that it’s ok to take 2% from someone who has more than you because they don’t need it as much as you do. Please, in the world of ethics, tell me how that makes sense. If that’s the case, why don’t you just go rob them?

  • danno

    Thanks Ralph for your support. I don’t argue with them. All it proves is that there is one person in the room. Have a good day.

  • Dale Helm

    I find it interesting that taking all comments and views above aside one point is being overlooked.

    This budget is an increase. Let me say that again – it is an increase – not a cut. Where the disagreement lies is by how much government spending will “increase” in the next budget cycle.

    The Republican bills support a 6% Increase. While Dayton’s position has changed back and forth he wants something in the neighborhood of a 20% increase.

    That simply is not realistic in this economy. Even in a booming economy how many people do you know receive a 20% increase to their paycheck over a two year period?

    How many businesses can make such a claim? You know the answer. We all want a strong Minnesota and a secure future for our state. I think we will get their faster talking about the numbers and less about rhetoric.

  • danno

    Thank you Dale. You are of course correct. Part of the problem is that a certain level of increase is necessary this time just to hold the line on spending and to try ot eliminate the huge shortfall caused by Pawlenty’s mismanagement of government. Pawlenty’s homage to Grover is not a way to run a state. I think once Dayton gets rid of the hole and replaces the reserves that Pawlenty insisted on spending, state finances will be a lot more stable than they have been for the last eight years. Just my opinionl. Again. Thanks.