Dear Friends and Neighbors,
Earlier this week I cast one of the easiest "No" votes in my time at the Minnesota Legislature. The bill was HF677, the Omnibus Tax Bill, that seeks to raise $2.6 billion dollars in taxes on hardworking Minnesotans at every income level.
Included in the bill were increased taxes -- some as high as 900% -- on alcohol, tobacco, sports memorabilia, and rental cars. I view all of these taxes as fundamentally regressive. Even my colleagues across the aisle acknowledged during debate that tobacco and alcohol taxes are regressive in nature, disproportionately hitting low and middle-income Minnesotans
The most egregious part of this tax bill, however, comes in the adjustments that were made to lower tax bracket levels. Due to reductions in the income tax brackets, thousands of Minnesotans making even as little as $21,651 per year could be vaulted in to a new, higher tax bracket, raising their income taxes to pay for billions of dollars in new spending. This bracket reduction brings in nearly as much money as the new 4th tier on the wealthiest Minnesotans.
Where is the fairness in this bill? Raising taxes on lower tax brackets is a serious broken promise to the people of Minnesota. It seems it's not enough for Democrats that we're asking for billions more from the hardworking taxpayers of Minnesota to pay for double-digit increases in many budget areas, and millions of dollars in wasteful spending and more bureaucracy.
Four Democrats joined all Republicans in voting no.
I hope that before this bill comes back from conference committee, the majority will come to realize what those four Democrats did: this bill is simply the wrong approach to building a healthy economy and growing jobs in our state.
I invite you to connect on Facebook for news and updates by "liking" my Facebook page. Please visit www.facebook.com/repsondraerickson and "like" the page.
Have a great weekend,
State Representative, District 15A