by Sen. David Osmek
MINNESOTA SENATE DIST. 33
The Minnesota State Senate on April 29 narrowly passed the Omnibus Tax Bill (Senate File 552/House File 677). This large bill contains a variety of tax provisions and raises $1.84 billion in new taxes. The bill initially failed 34-32 with many suburban Democrats breaking with Republicans in opposition. The bill finally passed on a reconsideration vote of 35-31.
I voted against the bill in both votes.
The bill increases sales taxes by expanding the base to new items like clothing, over the counter medications, haircuts, digital downloads, auto repair services, and sports memorabilia like baseball cards, hats and jerseys. The largest tax increase in the bill is $1.2 billion in taxes on individuals making over $79,730 and married joint filers making over $140,960. For these individuals, rates will increase by 20 percent from 7.85 percent to 9.4 percent.
Every Minnesotan will pay more in taxes under this controversial tax plan. Hard working taxpayers are being asked to pay more for everyday items like clothing, oil changes, haircuts, and over-the-counter medications. Middle-income people will also be hit with higher income taxes.
What is needed in state government right now is a little intellectual honesty. We are being asked to support almost $3 billion in taxes and fees to solve a $600 million budget deficit. This is irresponsible and Minnesotans deserve better. Minnesota’s economy continues to improve; revenues continue to increase beyond projections; our state is headed in the right direction. The last thing we should be doing is saddling every person in this state with more taxes.
“There are only two certainties in life: Death and Taxes. Today, we are taxing Minnesotans to death.” I said as I concluded my remarks during debate of the bill on the Senate floor.
Contact Sen. David Osmek by e-mail at [email protected], by phone at 651-296-1282 or by mail at 19 State Office Building, 100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. St. Paul, MN 55115,