The Daily Digest (Hockey beer, school start fear; tweaks to Dayton plan near?)

A light schedule on a snowy Friday at the Capitol. The Senate Judiciary Committee finishes its second day of hearings on gun legislation. Elsewhere, lawmakers are briefed on state workforce trends.

State

Lawmakers seek alternatives to some of Dayton’s tax ideas (MPR News)

“Reaction to Gov. Dayton’s proposed re-tooling of sales taxes, income taxes and property taxes has been mostly lukewarm, even among his fellow Democrats. Some are already looking at possible options.”

Gun advocates say background check expansion won’t stop bad guys (MPR News)

Supporters told a Minnesota Senate panel that most Americans back criminal background checks for all guy buyers. Gun rights advocates say it won’t stop criminals from getting guns.

Panel mulls earlier school start in Minn. (MPR News)

State law requires classes start after Labor Day unless school districts get a waiver. A bill would let the districts decide when to start. But Minnesota’s tourism industry warns that could cut summer vacations short and damage business.

Bill would extend alcohol sales to Gopher hockey and football games (MPR News)

One lawmaker says the experience at football games shows beer and wine can be sold responsibly. The Legislature last year allowed alcohol sales at the Gopher football stadium, earning the U $900,000 in liquor sales from seven home games last season.

Minnesota bill calls for 5-year moratorium on wolf hunting, trapping (Star Tribune)

“The bill’s chance of passage appears to be a long shot. The law opening wolves to hunting and trapping last year passed with bipartisan support. And it might face an especially difficult time in the House.”

Frac sand firm agrees to reviews for proposed SE Minn. mines (MPR News)

A frac sand mining company proposing two mines in Winona County has agreed to conduct an in-depth environmental review of the projects voluntarily. The decision comes two weeks after state health officials called for a review.

Other states take different approach on taxes than Dayton (MPR News)

Louisiana GOP Gov. Bobby Jindal is considering eliminating the income tax and replacing the lost revenue by increasing the sales tax. GOP governors in Kansas and Nebraska are weighing similar policy shifts

Feds award Minn. $45M Medicaid grant (MPR News)

“The federal government has awarded Minnesota $45 million to serve as a model testing site to lower taxpayer costs and improve the quality of care for Medicaid patients.”

Nation

Movement in budget cuts battle? (CBS News)

Military brass: Cuts will impair readiness (Washington Post)

Buying a gun? States consider insurance rule (New York Times)

Poll: 40% say let the looming budget cuts happen (CBS News)

Revenue Department pushes back against criticism of Dayton tax plan

A new Minnesota Department of Revenue study argues Gov. Dayton’s tax plan would be fairer to low and middle income Minnesotans than the current system.

“The bottom line is that the fourth tier tax increase and the homeowner property tax rebates are both very progressive and large enough to more than offset the impact of the more regressive portions of the full proposal,” the department said in the bulletin.

Business groups say the plan is unfair. Some contend his plan to tax clothing and consumer services would make lower and middle income Minnesotans pay more.

– Tom Scheck

  • Janne

    I miss the local news stories. That was the most interesting/useful part of The Daily Digest. All the national and MPR stories I get through my other media consumption. :(