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.