The $182 million supplemental budget was passed on the last day of the legislative session, by a margin of 95-39 in the House of Representatives, and 50-16 in the senate with bipartisan support. The Governor is expected to consider the bill within the next few days.
According to Minnesota State Session Daily, money was appropriated in the bill as follows:
- Jobs, Energy and Equity: $75 million, including $35 million for broadband and $35 million for equity;
- State Government: $45.23 million;
- E-12 Education: $25 million;
- Public Safety: $24.97 million;
- Environment and Agriculture: $7.18 million;
- Higher Education: $5 million; and
- Health and Human Services: $0
Despite its passage, the bill was met with ample controversy, particularly as it related to transparency. Rep Tim Mahoney (DFL-St. Paul) connected this year’s experience to a similar one he had in the last minutes of the previous legislative session, stating “Last year I got 60 seconds to read your bill; this year I get three-and-a-half hours to read your bill.”
DFL House Minority Leader Paul Thissen (Minneapolis), a vocal critic of the chaotic finishing of the 2017 legislative session, argued, “One of the themes of this bill, members, is great expectations that have been crushed.”
Some legislators struck a much more optimistic tone. Rep Penny Flanagan (DFL-St. Louis Park) praised the bill for providing funding aimed at lessening disparities that exist between Caucasians and Minnesotans of color. “The face of Minnesota is changing,” argued Flanagan, “we need to keep up with that change.”
Included in the supplemental budget bill are four tax provisions, which according to Session Daily is expected to total $39 million in Fiscal Year 2018 and $29 million in Fiscal Year 2019. The four tax provisions are:
- Elimination of sales tax for modular homes;
- tax credit for families who have a stillborn baby;
- exemption of military pensions from state tax; and
- a one year extension for the angel investment tax credit.
To learn more about the latest happenings from the Governor’s office as to whether Governor Dayton signs the supplemental budget into law, or vetoes the legislation, subscribe to Alpha News.