2014 is an important year for the Affordable Care Act (ACA), otherwise known as Obamacare. In Minnesota, all citizens and legal residents are required by law to have health coverage by March 31 of this year or face a fine. Unfortunately, the state agency established to help Minnesotans access coverage plans has been unable to provide the level of service needed. This means thousands across the state are currently without coverage and have been unable to access the state resources they deserve through MNsure. I’d like to share some important facts with you about the impact of this federal law in our state and our local area: MNsure was created after legislation last spring authorized Governor Dayton to construct a state-based exchange to implement Obamacare. […]
News coverage by KSTP concerning medical marijuana in Minnesota. Minnesotans for Compassionate Care, an advocacy group, says legalizing medical marijuana is long overdue. They argue doing so would increase the quality of life for people suffering from chronic pain. However, critics are concerned legalizing medical marijuana may have unintended consequences that may harm children or increase marijuana-related traffic accidents. The legislature passed a medical marijuana bill in 2009 but then Governor Pawlenty vetoed it on the grounds that law enforcement opposed legalizing medical marijuana. Governor Dayton feels the same and says he’ll oppose it as long as law enforcement is opposed to the legalization. Click for KSTP News Clip.
State officials recently announced a projected $1.08 billion surplus for 2014-15. Without question, this is continued good news for the people of Minnesota. Now, with extra money in the bank, it’s time to take action and repeal some of the $2.1 billion in new taxes before they make a real dent on this economic upswing. Over the last two years, we have been riding a wave of continued growth. But the future wasn’t always so bright. Fortunately, we can learn from the past and make change for the better. When I first stepped into office in 2011, we faced a historic $6 billion deficit. Government spending was far outpacing the economy. Legislators were making promises they couldn’t keep with money they didn’t have. It was […]
St. Paul – Without a doubt the most discussed issue in recent state and national news has been the long-awaited implementation of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, which began, in earnest, on October 1. While most agree that implementation across the country has been a disaster, I’ve reserved judgment for the first two months until sufficient time has been given to fix problems with MNsure (Minnesota’s arm of Obamacare) and the federal HealthCare.gov website. However, HealthCare.gov still is not functional and MNsure continues to lack basic functionality. The March 31 deadline is fast approaching for those without insurance to purchase it or be forced to pay a fine. Folks forced off existing plans must find new coverage by Dec. 15 to continue […]
Well, the big day turned into a really bad day for taxpayers. After saying that he wanted the Vikings to contribute a substantial amount of money from team resources, Governor Dayton didn’t follow through on his promise. This evening the Stadium Authority entered into an agreement with Zygi Wilf that did nothing to reduce the $345 million dollars Minnesota taxpayers will pay after Governor Dayton promised in 2012 that not a dime of tax money would be used. Instead the agreement with Zygi Wilf limits the total revenue he will get from Personal Seat Licenses (PSLs) to a total of $125 million with prices for individual seats ranging from $500 to $10,000. These user fees have totaled over $400 million dollars each for the last […]
BARRETT INTRODUCES WORKABLE, RESPONSIBLE SOLUTION TO FUND VIKINGS STADIUM St. Paul – State Representative Bob Barrett, R-Lindstrom, today called on Gov. Dayton to fix his mistakes and protect hardworking taxpayers from being used as the primary funding source for the new Vikings stadium. In 2012 Gov. Dayton promised to build a stadium without tax dollars, but with dismal e-pull tab revenue—95 percent short of projection—hundreds of millions of General Fund dollars are being used. “The public demands a responsible solution. After e-pull tabs failed miserably, Gov. Dayton refused to protect taxpayers, instead choosing to protect New Jersey […]