Friday, December 16, 2005

Budget Surplus And The Republicans

This is from today's Stillwater Courier. Rep. Mike Charron (56-A) talks about how the Pawlenty lead GOP brought the Minnesota from $4.5 billion in the red to $1 billion in the black.


Republicans showed fiscal management which led to budget surplus
Thursday, December 15, 2005
From Mike Charron, State Rep. District 56A (R-Woodbury)

You may have heard the good news: the state has a $700 million budget surplus based on November projections by the state finance department.

Keep in mind, that money is dedicated to an important education "shift" account that legislators used to help bring the state out of the budget deficit of 2003.

That's great news for our schools. Moreover, there�s an additional $317 million in a tax relief account, money that was left over after closing the budget books on the 2005 fiscal year. We have a surplus because we followed a simple formula: hold the line on income taxes and invest wisely in Minnesota's priorities.

We now have a stronger economy and more jobs, and more dollars coming into the state's coffers. Credit Minnesota Republicans in the House of Representatives and Gov. Tim Pawlenty for aggressively adopting tight fiscal policies that restored the state's financial picture following a massive $4.5 billion deficit.

Many difficult votes were cast and many Republicans paid a political price in the 2004 election for their fiscal stewardship.

True leadership means doing the right thing in the face of adversity.

In contrast, Senate DFL leadership insisted that we could only solve our financial problems by imposing a $1.5 billion income tax increase.

They demanded that government spending increase by a whopping 11.5 percent. Their insistence on raising our income taxes forced our Minnesota government into a complete shutdown.

And now we all know that they were wrong. Pawlenty and House Republicans forged a compromise that raised spending across the board 8 percent and provided the largest increase in education spending in the last 15 years.

Further, we did this without spending beyond our means. Pawlenty's assertion that this is the greatest financial turn-around in state history has merit. In only two years, we went from billions in the red to over a billion in the black. Let's continue to manage the state budget wisely and adopt policies that continue to grow jobs. By doing so, we grow state revenue to fund important priorities such as education and health care without increasing the income tax burden on Minnesota families. (Source: Stillwater Courier, Dec. 16, 2005)



At 10:10 AM, Blogger MN Liberal said...

To claim that a $1 billion surplus is from the "hold[ing] the line on income taxes and invest[ing] wisely in Minnesota's priorities" is at best spurious. $700 million was borrowed (read: cut) from schools, and another $112 million came from the death of James Binger. To claim that our surplus is the result of a "strong economy" is to mislead the residents of Woodbury and Stillwater.

How is balancing the budget by shifting $700 million away from schools "invest[ing] wisely in Minnesota's priorities"?

At 11:43 AM, Blogger Kevin from Minneapolis said...

Because it enabled us to not raise income taxes and taxes on businesses which helped create the jobs that led to the increased revenue and relatively minimal cost to schools.

You raise taxes by a few billion dollars and all of a sudden people aren't spending as much because they don't have as much and businesses aren't creating jobs because they have to give more money to government which in turn limits revenue growth.

That's why.

At 6:38 PM, Blogger Mike S said...

So a tax cut to 97% of Minnesotans, as the DFL House Caucus proposed is bad policy? No, raising property taxes through the roof on Minnesotans is bad policy. Right now the middle class pays a higher share of taxes than those Vikings on the sex boat. That isn't right, its not fair, and it doesn't create jobs.


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