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Tag Archives: Jim Schowalter

And the deed is done: Dayton signs budget bills to end shutdown

After a seven-month standoff between DFL Gov. Mark Dayton and the Republican-controlled Legislature that produced an unprecedented three-week government shutdown, the state budget impasse came to a rapid conclusion this week as the House and Senate worked through the night on Tuesday to pass a set of budget bills during a one-day special session. Dayton responded just as quickly, signing the legislation in a ceremony at his office at 9 a.m. Wednesday.

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MN credit rating downgraded by Fitch

One of the three big New York bond houses today downgraded Minnesota's credit rating. The decision, which is being blamed on years of failure to solve the state's structural budget problems, will lead to higher borrowing costs, state officials say.

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Taxing times for new revenue commissioner

Myron Frans didn't ease into his new role in the Minnesota political world. Within days of starting his job as Gov. Mark Dayton's head of Revenue on April 6, Frans and Budget Commissioner Jim Schowalter penned a contentious letter to Republican leaders. It warned them that their budgets were at least $1.2 billion shy of solving the state's $5 billion budget deficit, and were based on unsound fiscal notes and estimates.

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Minnesota’s budget showdown could threaten the state’s credit rating

Minnesota has traditionally enjoyed high marks from the three primary credit rating agencies - Moody's Investors Service, Standard & Poor's and Fitch Ratings. Starting in 1997, all three firms gave the state their highest Aaa rating. But in 2003 Moody's downgraded Minnesota's bond rating to Aa1, citing concerns about balancing the state's books through volatile, short-term fixes. The assessments of the three firms have remained fixed ever since.

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