Governor Mark Dayton kept his pledge to veto the $260 million tax cuts package on June 6 midnight. This veto happened after legislators from the Republican party urged Gov. Dayton to sign a particular bill which will cut the rates of a number of taxpayers, like veterans, student loan debtors, farmers and working families.
No deal has been made between the governor and GOP leaders to push forward with any special session. There are no plans for discussion until next week. The leaders have made it clear that divisions continued to remain on the next steps of bonding legislation and salvaging the tax cuts.
According to Dayton, while he himself support a number of provisions laid out by the bill, an error in its wording was caught by his administration. This error, officials say, would lead the state treasury to bleed $101 million over subsequent three years. The governor also insisted that the legislators give a fresh lease of life to a sales tax exemption linked to Minnesota State High School League. This action will fund a number of scholarships for the low income athletes- a specific change which was accidentally not included.
This sudden veto of the governor not initiating any action and allowing the measure to expire, has abruptly reset all negotiations which were supposed to happen between legislative leaders and Dayton. The governor wants to ask for a legislative session to fix this tax measure- and he also seeks million dollar funding for University of Minnesota, new line for light railways and clean water projects. The rail line will connect central Minneapolis to the Eden Prairie. The GOP members are okay with the tax bill. They have reservations about new spending.
Kurt Daudt, the Republican Minnesota House Speaker, expressed the opinion that it is better to take the time and do the right thing than rushing again into something. The speaker said that it would have been easy to fix the wording error and the governor vetoed the bill only to get a leverage so that legislators can approve a new spending package in special sessions. If passed, the bill would have delivered a substantial amount of money in the form of new credits, deductions and exemptions. The plan, other than relieving college graduates, businesses and farmers, would have included a write off of property tax by developers for a new soccer stadium located in St. Paul.