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Gov. Tim Pawlenty

Aug 12, 2011

Decade-long LGA erosion recalibrates city budget

In 2002, Minneapolis received $112 million in local government aid from the state. The following year the state’s largest city was slated to receive $118 million but ultimately saw that sum cut to $92 million.

Jul 20, 2011

Four veteran insiders offer a view of past state negotiations

Property taxes now underwrite nearly half of Minneapolis’ spending In 2002, Minneapolis received $112 million in local government aid from the state. The following year the state’s largest city was slated to receive $118 million but ultimately saw that sum cut to $92 million. That commenced a decade-long erosion in support from the state. By ...

Jul 15, 2011

Budget deal leaves many feeling like losers

Baseball Hall-of-Famer George Brett once said that “if a tie is like kissing your sister, losing is like kissing your grandmother with her teeth out.”

Jun 22, 2011

Shutdown threat damaging both sides

Gov. Mark Dayton has held the political upper hand throughout the first six months of his tenure. Polling has consistently shown him with approval ratings above 50 percent and widespread public support for his plan to eliminate the state’s $5 billion budget deficit through a mix of spending cuts and tax increases on the state’s wealthiest residents.

Jun 17, 2011

Lawsuit: Shutdown means stop

On Monday, yet another legal petition regarding the terms of a state government shutdown is expected to be filed in Ramsey County District Court, and this one makes a very simple case: In the event of a shutdown, priority funding should go to — no one. Nothing gets funded. Any such arrangement is illegal on its face according to the Minnesota Constitution.

Jun 15, 2011

Redistricting panel wins bipartisan praise

Of the five judges selected by Minnesota Supreme Court Chief Justice Lorie Gildea to oversee the state’s redistricting process, one is considered a “rising star” in the judicial world, another has ruled on a case that started a courtroom brawl, and yet another parlayed a tour guide job into a more than 20-year career as a corporate attorney. Together, the judges are widely considered a fair,[...]

Jun 15, 2011

Pick a shutdown, any shutdown

With two weeks left until the end of the biennial budget cycle, the largest question facing the state is increasingly not whether the government will be forced to shut down July 1, but just how much will be shuttered when it does.

Jun 10, 2011

In the House, centrist Republicans could play a pivotal role in budget fight

Moderate legislators are hard to come by these days. By most accounts, last fall’s election saw voters oust most of the middle-of-the-road DFLers in the Minnesota House and replace them with a spate of freshman Republicans elected on a strong right-wing wave that swept the nation.

Jun 8, 2011

Scheid’s departure will be keenly felt at Capitol

In 11 nonconsecutive terms as a DFL legislator going back to 1977, Sen. Linda Scheid has made a name for herself as a highly knowledgeable and instinctually bipartisan legislator with an independent streak. Long before legislators were chanting “jobs, jobs, jobs” in unison, Scheid cast moderate, pro-business votes that sometimes raised eyebrows among fellow DFLers.

Jun 3, 2011

What would a government shutdown in 2011 look like? No one really knows

As acrimony and posturing continue to dominate relations between DFL Gov. Mark Dayton and GOP legislative leaders, the countdown to a July 1 state government shutdown proceeds. Yet even as the zero hour draws closer, many basic questions — such as the scope of services to be shuttered and the likely public impact — remain mysteries that would ultimately be settled in a courtroom.

Jun 1, 2011

Revenue without ‘taxes’

With Gov. Mark Dayton’s proposal to place a fourth-tier income tax on the state’s wealthiest earners running into a Republican wall of opposition, any compromise that moves Dayton’s way on revenue is likely to find legislators sifting through lower-profile options such as shifts, fees, tax loopholes and surcharges to close the gap.

May 25, 2011

The possibility of a government shutdown looms as time runs out

In the closing days of the 2011 legislative session, Republican legislative leaders repeatedly stated that they were optimistic about reaching a solution to the state’s $5 billion budget deficit. “We can get this done,” said Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch with a week left in the session.

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