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GOP negotiated in good faith, but Dayton didn't

Minnesota is in a state of reflection today. Gov. Mark Dayton shut down the state government Thursday night, despite Republican leaders' many offers of compromise.

Here is a review of the last month and an update on where things stand in addressing the $5 billion difference between the amount of money that state government is expected to collect and the appetite that it is expressing, over the next two years.

1. Gov. Dayton wants to spend $36 billion and increase state spending by 18 percent.

2. Gov. Dayton wants to increase taxes to pay for that increase in government spending.

3. Republicans passed a balanced budget on May 21 that included a 12 percent increase in state spending (6 percent increase if you factor in the federal stimulus dollars).

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4. The Republicans' $34 billion balanced budget proposal and the spending increase that would accomplish it, are both the largest in state history. The proposal increased funding for schools, seniors, and disabled without raising taxes.

Republican compromise offers

May: Knowing Gov. Dayton wanted more revenue, Republicans proposed a balanced budget containing a 12 percent increase in state spending (6 percent increase if you factor in the federal stimulus dollars). This proposal would have avoided a special session and a government shutdown.

Status:  Vetoed by Gov. Dayton

June 6: Republican leaders offered to accept 50 percent of Go. Dayton's budget.  This compromise proposal would have adopted the governor's funding numbers for schools, courts, and public safety.

Status:  Rejected by Gov. Dayton

June 16: Republican leaders dropped request for tax cuts — a key provision for us. This compromise proposal also included increasing spending for higher education, transportation, and more. The compromise also renewed our offer to accept Governor Dayton's numbers for schools,

courts, and public safety. 

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Status:  Rejected by Gov. Dayton

June 30: Republican leaders offered to add $10 million to the University of Minnesota and issue appropriation bonds. Gov. Dayton wanted to shift school aid payments from 70/30 to 50/50.  GOP leaders said no to  Dayton's 50/50 school aid payment shift, but did move a little on that split to generate $700 million in revenue. Republican leaders then offered to increase per-student aid to cover borrowing costs. 

Status:  Rejected by Gov. Dayton

Overall: House and Senate Republicans offered to pass a "lights on" budget that would continue government operations and avoid a shut down during negotiations. 

Status:  Rejected by Gov. Dayton

Where we go from here? Only the governor can call us back into special session. The Legislature cannot meet and pass bills without his permission.

The ball is in Gov. Dayton's court. 

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