Zellers: "Disappointed in Governor Dayton’s Veto"
Minnesota Speaker of the House Kurt Zellers (R-Maple Grove) responds to Gov. Mark Dayton's veto on Friday.
Editor's note: The following opinion piece is reprinted, with permission, from House Speaker Rep. Kurt Zellers (32B) email newsletter May 6. Zellers represents Maple Grove.
Minnesota received some disappointing news on Friday. Governor Dayton vetoed more than 7,000 union construction jobs, a property tax freeze for every Minnesota business, property tax relief for homeowners and much more. Local Government Aid payments for 18 cities, extending the bovine TB tax credit, Angel Investment for rural Minnesota, a new Greater Minnesota Internship Program and a tax credit for hiring Minnesota veterans -- all of them gone with a callous swipe of the governor's veto pen.
This is disappointing especially for small business owners who are struggling to survive in an economy slowly making an upturn. The Tax Relief and Job Creation Act:
- Permanently froze the automatic inflator on the statewide levy on commercial/industrial properties, providing property tax relief to small businesses without filtering through government first.
- Provided an upfront sales tax exemption on capital equipment purchases for all small businesses, providing instant tax relief for those businesses making such investments and freeing up time and capital tied into keeping track for this complex system.
- Made tremendous strides in eliminating the sales tax accelerated remittance, which is both cumbersome and burdensome on small businesses.
- Extended the 2012 Jobs Bill TIF, which helps encourage business development.
- Created a Veterans Jobs Tax Credit for hiring our returning servicemen and servicewomen.
- Enhanced funding for Research & Development and the Angel Investor Credit.
- Modified the sales tax exemptions for data centers that invest in Minnesota.
- Increased funding to the Minnesota Investment Fund by $2 million for fiscal year 2013 to help create and retain jobs in Minnesota.
- Provided targeted property tax relief to homeowners.
In commenting on this veto, Governor Mark Dayton and the DFL criticized the property tax relief provided to businesses across our state. What they neglected to mention is that the state spends hundreds of millions of dollars each year on property tax relief for homeowners and renters. In fiscal year 2013, we will spend $360 million in tax relief for homeowners and another $177 million for renters. In fiscal year 2014, we will spend $368 million for homeowners and another $186 million for renters. These numbers automatically inflate and continue to help homeowners.
Nowhere do we provide direct relief for Main Street businesses in our state.
I am disappointed in Governor Dayton’s veto as it sends a negative message to our job creators and stalls any effort in providing the needed investments in the long-term growth of our economy.