Tell the Governor that you support him in standing up for Minnesota by vetoing bad bills, even if it means a special session!
In the last week Governor Dayton has vetoed all 10 budget omnibus bills, having warned that he would not accept bills that include too many policy provisions (there were over 600 policy provisions included) and that underfund essential services. Now the bills return to the Legislature to be reworked and, after a week of political melodrama, it looks like the real work begins to find agreement between all sides.
Please call the Governor and ask him to say no” to omnibus bills that under-fund state services and contain controversial policy provisions. Tell the Governor that you support him vetoing these bills even if it means a special session or a government shutdown.
It is really simple to call – 651-201-3400 or toll-free 800-657-3717. At the end of the line there is a person who tallies every single bill or issue each caller raises and whether the caller opposed the issue or not – so mention as many issues as you can. You don’t need to go into any further details. Every call matters.
Here is a list and very crude explanation of the omnibus bills vetoed:
HF861 – Transportation Omnibus – cuts transit funding to leave deficit of $17.5m; reduces power of Metropolitan Council; removes any obligation by the state to support fare subsidies for new light rail.
HF890 – Education Omnibus – underfunds education (1.5% increase when min 2% is needed to avoid service cuts); eliminates voluntary pre-K .
SF1937 – Jobs Omnibus – contains provisions that give a big boost to fossil fuel companies at the cost of the environment; prevents cities from banning plastic bags; provision to prevent Internet Service Providers from monitoring and selling your browsing history was removed.
SF605 – State Government Finance Omnibus - ends the public financing of political campaigns; under-funds executive offices (to gain control of executive branch); cuts funding to State Demographer’s office for 2020 census; skimps on cybersecurity funding; eliminates the Office of Economic Status of Women, which provides all sorts of research and statistics on women to the Legislature.
SF2214 – Higher Education Omnibus - harmful combination of under-funding (39% of what Dayton wants) and tuition freezes; splits funding 80/20 between Minnesota State University and University of Minnesota (Dayton wants 60/40); will lead to program and service cuts, larger class sizes, staff and teacher layoffs.
SF803 – Public Safety Omnibus – excessive punishments for protesting; permits use of for-profit, private prisons; allows off-duty police officers to carry weapons into private establishments; underfunds the court system.
HF4 – Taxes Omnibus - uses up most of the surplus to provide $1.15 billion tax cuts; no tax cuts for the lowest tax bracket; gives tax credits for private charter school tuition; exempts the new soccer stadium in Saint Paul from ever paying property taxes.
HF888 – Environmental Omnibus - not much info on this one, but the DNR commissioner said the current funding levels would lead to 100 full-time employees being laid off.
SF800 – Health and Human Services - $482m budget cut; impacts mental health care, and response to public health crisis; shuts down MNsure, which will affect 100,000 people; moves MN to the federal exchange - dooms MinnesotaCare; allows non-profit HMO’s to convert to for-profit. Not a good time for such cuts with AHCA impact looming.
For more background on what has been going on, listen to this press conference from 5/11 with Gov. Dayton, Lt Gov. Tina Smith and DFL women legislators on bills particularly affecting women. For those interested in going further into all this, please read Rep. Diane Loeffler's legislative update from 5/8.