Senator Ingebrigtsen sums up ninth week at LegislatureSenator Bill Ingebrigtsen, R-Alexandria, provided the following summary of his work at the Minnesota Legislature during its ninth week:
By: Senator Bill Ingebrigtsen, Alexandria Echo Press
Editor's note: Senator Bill Ingebrigtsen, R-Alexandria, provided the following summary of his work at the Minnesota Legislature during its ninth week:
Job growth and tax relief
The Minnesota Senate took up the Jobs and Tax Relief bill on the floor Friday. Senate File 1972 provides tax relief of over $102 million in Fiscal Year 2013 for families and job creators with a total tax relief over the next three years of nearly $300 million. Two-thirds of the $102 million relief is for individual income taxpayers.
Tax relief for businesses and job creators makes more capital available for investment, equipment, expansion and additional employees. This is the type of legislation, a true jobs bill, which will help to grow the private sector economy. It makes long term, sustainable changes to improve the jobs climate, not just short term fixes. The provisions in Senate File 1972 send a signal to entrepreneurs, investors and job creators that Minnesota is open for business.
Investing in Minnesota’s future
The Senate introduced the 2012 Capital Investment bill on Wednesday where it was passed in the Capitol Investment Committee. The Senate Capital Investment bill focuses on Minnesota’s future by making prudent investments in higher education and state infrastructure. The total amount of the proposal is $496 million in general obligation bonds which is $281 million than the Governor’s request and a few million less than the combined House bills.
The largest portions of the bill include:
--$179 million for higher education requests, 36 percent of total bill
--$125 million for state assets preservation, 25 percent of total bill
--$35 million for local roads and bridges
--$30.5 million for flood mitigation
--$25 million for exterior renovation of the State Capitol
--$20 million for waste water infrastructure across the state
--$6 million for Reinvest in Minnesota
Together with last year's bonding agreement with Governor Dayton, total Senate bonding requests will be under $1 billion for the biennium. The bill also includes a provision that requires the Commissioner of Management and Budget to report back to the Legislature on the jobs created or retained as a result of capital project funding by the state.
The Capital Investment bill was approved by the Finance Committee on Thursday and its next stop is the Senate floor for a vote.
Cutting red tape for job creators
On Thursday, the Senate voted to pass the conference committee report on the environmental permitting efficiency bill. This bill would cut red tape and help businesses invest in Minnesota, creating jobs for Minnesotans. This jobs bill builds off of the work we did in 2011 by finding efficiencies in the environmental permitting process. Specifically, this bill continues to streamline the permitting process, removes duplicate services, and reforms government so it moves at the speed of 21st Century commerce.
Senate File 1567 is en route to the governor’s office for his consideration.
The Senate passed House File 2083 on Monday, a bill to speed up the payment schedule of delayed funding to our schools. If signed into law by Governor Dayton, effective immediately, the bill would move from a 60 to 70.2 percent payment shift by using $430 million from reserves.
This bill is the responsible step needed to address the school shift that was part of last year’s budget compromise and begin to chip away at the large debt to schools that existed before Republicans held the majority. If Governor Dayton agrees to make school budgets a priority, undoing last year’s shift will help districts manage their cash flow and replenish their reserves.
Ingebrigtsen can be reached at 651-297-8063, by mail at 303 State Capitol Building, 75 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155, or via e-mail at email@example.com.