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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Sondra Erickson (R)

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News from Representative Erickson 03-07-2014

Friday, March 7, 2014
Dear Friends,
Yesterday, the House passed HF1777, a bill to repeal three business-to-business taxes passed just 9 short months ago by Democrats during the 2013 session. The bill also addressed federal conformity, bringing much of Minnesota's tax code in line with the federal code, restoring important tax deductions for Minnesota families.
Republicans consider this an important first step. With a $1.2 billion surplus, it's important to make sure that money is given back to the people it belongs to: the hardworking taxpayers. The surplus is an indication Minnesotans are taxed too much, and that money is better off in your pocket than in a vault in St. Paul waiting to be spent on more wasteful spending like we saw in 2013 such as pay raises for politicians or a $90 million Senate Office complex.
This is an admission by Democrats that they made a mistake by raising taxes in 2013. They now acknowledge what they refused to last session; that taxes have consequences, and have a damaging impact on Minnesota families and businesses. It's now up to the Senate to pass a similar measure so we can send a bill to the Governor and deliver relief from the burdens placed on Minnesotans last year. 
Unfortunately, it seems Senate Democrats want to make you wait to restore your tax deductions, which could force thousands of Minnesotans to file tax extensions or amend their already-submitted tax return. I hope House Democrats can work with their counterparts in the Senate to do the right thing and pass this bill in a timely fashion.
In the House Education Committee, we continue to see discussion of a proposal that would effectively eliminate the requirement that teachers pass the basic skills test. Lowering the bar for teachers and students is unacceptable in my view, and will result in lower performance and results for our students and teachers. Minnesota has the best teachers in the nation; let's keep our standards high to ensure we have quality teachers teaching our children in the classroom.
Lastly, I want to thank the numerous constituents who stopped by to visit at the Capitol this week. If you or a group you're a part of are planning a trip to St. Paul, please contact my office to set up a meeting. You can reach my office by calling 651-296-6746 or by emailing
Have a great weekend, and enjoy the warmer weather in store for us in the coming days.
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