Christopher Magan / St. Paul Pioneer Press
ST. PAUL — If Minnesota lawmakers can overcome their differences, it should be easier to file your state taxes next year. You might even get a tax cut. Or pay more. With a month left to go in their legislative session, tax policy is front and center again at the Capitol. The Legislature has more work to do on the topic than usual this year because they were unable to agree on a bill in 2018.
ST. PAUL — Minnesota’s school leaders can avoid funding cuts and even jail time if a bill at the Legislature allowing snow days to be counted as school days becomes law. The change would only be for this school year, when frigid temps and record February snowfall forced schools to close for safety reasons. Many districts have taken a week or more off because of winter weather and typically only build a few extra days into their schedule to account for arctic temperatures and snow.
ST. PAUL — As many as 800,000 low- and middle-income Minnesotans could get free help filing their taxes, but don’t take advantage of it. Tax-preparation companies and nonprofits offer free software and services that nearly 65 percent of Minnesota taxpayers may qualify to receive. Services are income dependent and available across the state.
ST. PAUL — Minnesota lawmakers spent the first two days of the new legislative session detailing their top priorities, but there’s a lot of other things they also want to do. During short floor sessions in the House and Senate on Thursday, Jan. 10, lawmakers introduced a total 122 bills. The first 10 in the House and the first five in the Senate encompass what Republicans and Democrats say are the most pressing needs facing the state.
ST. PAUL — Minnesota Republicans had high hopes this would be the year they would break the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party’s grip on the state’s constitutional offices. An open race for attorney general seemed like their best bet. But Democratic candidate Congressman Keith Ellison was poised to disappoint them, according to election results late Tuesday, Nov. 6.
PAUL — Attorney General Lori Swanson wants drivers to put down their cellphones when they’re behind the wheel. Swanson highlighted a report Friday, Oct. 26, that characterized distracted driving as a deadly epidemic. She noted that each year 50 Minnesotans, and more than 3,000 people across the United States, are killed by distracted drivers.
ROSEMOUNT, Minn. — The Rosemount educator who suggested on social media that someone should assassinate newly sworn in U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh has resigned.
ST. PAUL — Health insurance rates on Minnesota's individual market will drop for a second straight year in 2019, but the progress toward better affordability could be short-lived. "I think we need a plan," Jessica Looman, state commerce commissioner, said Tuesday, Oct. 2, when she announced premiums would decrease on average between 7 percent and 27.7 percent. "I think we need to look at what we are going to do moving forward."
WOODBURY, Minn.—Minnesota's leading candidates for governor are split on whether the state needs a new source of revenue to combat the opioid crisis. Speaking at an opioid summit at Woodbury Lutheran Church Friday, Democrat Tim Walz said he backs a surcharge on opioid prescriptions to fund prevention and recovery efforts. Walz said drug companies need to be part of the effort to curb addiction to their products. "There is no one easy fix to this crisis," Walz said. "But there is a public commitment to getting it right."
ST. PAUL — The opioid crisis has gotten so bad that some employers are struggling to find sober workers. "The drug-testing challenge is a significant one for hiring," said Charlie Weaver, executive director of the Minnesota Business Partnership, an organization of 120 CEOs from companies that employ about 400,000 Minnesotans. Weaver and the state Department of Health announced a partnership Tuesday, Sept. 18, to create an opioid toolkit for employers to help workers struggling with addiction.