Saturday, March 25, 2023

Midway point of Legislative Session is here

The half-way point of the 2023 Legislative Session is upon us with the first deadline looming on March 10th. A bill must be heard in a House OR Senate Committee by first deadline in order to progress in 2023 under normal conditions.

Look for many lengthy hearings into the late evening hours during this week..

Please don’t hesitate to contact me for help with any state issue or legislative or at 651-296-4848.

February Budget Forecast

Minnesota’s office of Management and Budget (MMB) last Monday released its February revenue forecast, which provides information and an outlook for Minnesota’s financial picture. The report projects a surplus of $17.5 billion for the next budget cycle, which begins in July.

You will recall that earlier, the legislature passed a bill to automatically add inflation to forecast computations. Without that change, the true surplus number is closer to $19 billion.

Governor’s Proposed Budget:

Governor Walz proposes a whopping 25% increase in state spending! The Walz budget proposal raises taxes and fees and still spends the vast majority of the $17.5 billion surplus.

Minnesota has taken too much money from taxpayers. Nearly every day I hear from Minnesotans struggling with high inflation eroding their paychecks and retirements. As legislators, our first and foremost priority must be returning the surplus to those folks to help ease the stress on their pocketbooks. We all need relief, and the legislature is in a great position to help.

Much of this could have been done already. In the 2022 session when I was Chair of the Senate Taxes Committee, my House Taxes chair counterpart — a Democrat — and I agreed to a historic tax bill that fully eliminated the state’s tax on Social Security benefits and provided a permanent income tax cut. Despite that bipartisan agreement, House Democrat leadership would not bring up the agreed upon bill for a vote!

We have another chance. As we construct the new state budget, I am continuing my push to give the surplus back to taxpayers in the form of real, permanent tax relief.

Give it back tax relief plan

Last week, my colleagues and I unveiled our tax relief plan. In the face of a massive $19B budget surplus, and with Minnesotans struggling, we are answering their calls with permanent, ongoing tax relief.

If not now, then when?

We have clearly prepared our state for a rainy day. Now, the most valuable thing we can provide to our neighbors struggling with inflation is to deliver immediate and permanent tax relief. We trust Minnesotans to know how to best spend their money. Let’s get the government out of the way and put money back in your pockets.

A better way to help Minnesotans:

Fully eliminate the taxation on all Social Security benefits, including disability benefits

This would be $1.26 billion in tax relief for 472,902 Minnesotans.

Permanent Income Tax Relief

1% rate cut for both the 1st and 2nd tier which means tax cuts for ALL Minnesotans paycheck after paycheck.

Our lowest income tax rate is higher than the highest tax rate in 28 other states. This would provide $3 billion in permanent tax relief.

$35M in Property Tax Relief

The homestead market value exclusion allowing more Minnesotans to qualify and provide direct relief to combat rising property valuations.

$3.5 billion in a one-time child tax credit that would be available for two years

Families with children under the age of 18 will receive a refundable tax credit during their children’s youngest and most costly years. Parents will have both financial support and flexibility in how best to meet the individual needs of their child.

SPARK Museum Bill Hearing

The Senate Education Finance Committee heard my legislation SF-725 for SPARK, the Children’s Museum of Rochester. Heather Nessler, SPARK Executive Director, testified about the success, growth and importance of the Children’s museum.

The requested funds will allow the continuation of high-quality, enriching programs and provide for free or reduced price access to the exhibits so everyone can experience the learning through play. People of all ages learn about the world, each other and local environments with hands-on, inquiry-based exploration and play.

The Education Committee laid the bill over for possible further action.

Sen. Carla Nelson represents District 24 in the Minnesota State Senate.



Dodge County Independent

Dodge County Independent
Dodge County ADvantage
301 S. Mantorville Ave.
Plaza 57 • Suite 200
Kasson, MN 55944

Dodge County Printing
301 S. Mantorville Ave.
Plaza 57 • Suite 200
Kasson, MN 55944