GOP Senate Adds Regulations & Training Requirements for Hotels


The Minnesota Senate voted unanimously for a bill authored by Sen Jim Abeler (R-Anoka) that would expand regulations on the hotel industry. The bill, SF3637, requires "every person, firm, or corporation that operates a hotel or motel in Minnesota" to receive sex trafficking training "approved by the Commissioner" within 90 days of employment.

Action 4 Liberty opposes adding new government regulations on the private sector, especially ones that increase the cost of doing business. Companies should be free to create and conduct their own sex trafficking training.

The bill also fails the constitutional test of "single subject" as it contains language about immunization documentation and reporting of autism spectrum. For these stated reasons, Action 4 Liberty scored the bill.



MN Senate Passes Tax Conformity & Relief Bill

The Minnesota Senate passed their version of a federal tax conformity bill that reduces taxes by $168 Million for Minnesota taxpayers. The Senate took up the House tax bill and amended it to include their language which provides more tax relief. HF4385as amended by the Senate passed on a 34-32 vote.

Action 4 Liberty scored this bill favorably because it reduces the amount of resources that government takes out of the pockets of Minnesotans. However, we feel the Senate and House should have given back all $329 Million of the budget surplus instead of spending a large part of it.


Legislators Reveal Debt Spending Bill

The Minnesota House released its debt spending bill (also known as a bonding bill or "capitol investment" bill) today. On top of passing a massive $46 Billion budget last year, the largest in Minnesota's history, Republican legislators want to add $825 Million in debt on the state credit card.

Rep Dean Urdahl (R-18A) revealed HF4404this morning, highlighting the bill's intended purpose of maintaining "public infrastructure". The bill would issue debt on the backs of Minnesota taxpayers to fund several road projects, water treatment projects, public land acquisition by the DNR, a building for a private charity, money for the Minnesota zoo, money for higher education, money for a National Eagle Center, and much more.

Action 4 Liberty opposes adding debt to the state credit card. The good projects in the bill should be appropriated using general funds (money collected by the government through current revenue sources). We will score this bill and ask legislators to vote no.


MN House Passes Multi Subject Bill That Grows Spending

On Tuesday, the Minnesota House passed the Health & Human Services and Transportation Omnibus bill (HF3138) on a vote of 82 to 43. The bill increases spending by $100 Million, taking up about one third of the projected budget surplus funds.  The bill received overwhelming support from the Republican majority. Two Republicans broke ranks and voted against the bill: Rep Steve Drazkowski and Rep Jeremy Munson.

Action 4 Liberty was opposed to this bill and added the vote to This bill is unconstitutional based on Article 4, Section 17's "single subject" rule. Furthermore, the state is currently operating under a two-year budget that fully funds government. A4L believes there is no need to spend a dime more. The budget surplus should be returned to taxpayers.


Minnesota House Passes Tax Conformity Bill

On Monday, the Minnesota House passed a bill that would conform Minnesota's tax laws to the federal tax cuts, thus providing $107 Million of tax relief to Minnesotans. Rep David's tax bill (HF4385) passed on vote of 90 to 38. If the Legislature didn't act, Minnesota taxpayers would face a nightmare come tax filing period next year when the Dept of Revenue would require a separate tax form to use as its basis for levying taxes.

We score bills positively that reduce the amount of resources that go to government coffers, instead staying in the hands of individuals and businesses.  Action 4 Liberty would have liked to see the bill go further though. The state faces a $329 Million budget surplus, which we called for all of it to be returned to Minnesota taxpayers. This bill only accounts for a third of that amount.


First Two Votes Scored in the MN Senate

On Thursday evening, the Minnesota Senate held a long floor session to debate the Omnibus Supplemental Budget Bill (SF3656). After passing a two-year budget bill last year that fully funded government, the Minnesota Senate voted for a massive garbage bill that grows spending using additional funds from the budget surplus. The bill which has multiple subjects in it, fails the constitutional test of "single subject" according to Article 4, Section 17.

Action 4 Liberty scored the vote, which came down to a strict party line vote. All Republicans voted for the spending bill.


Also, Sen Ron Latz introduced an amendment to the bill during debate that would've expanded regulations on private citizens who seek to transfer or sell firearms to other individuals. This extreme bill would require Minnesotans to keep record of transferring firearms for the purpose of hunting if an individual loans his firearm to another person for longer than 12 hours.

The Amendment was ruled "not germane" by the President of the Senate and Latz challenged the ruling. A "Yes" vote was in favor of the President's ruling and the right vote to take for liberty. Action 4 Liberty scored the vote.

House Passes First Omnibus Bill that Grows Gov't

The MN House just passed the Education Omnibus Spending bill (HF4328) that increases spending by $30 Million. Last year, the Legislature passed a two-year budget that fully funded state government, but Republicans decided to take the majority of the $329 Million surplus and spend it on more government. This bill was the first of many bills that will spend the surplus money.

Action 4 Liberty did appreciate the provisions in the bill that increase school safety, but wanted to see the funds re-appropriated from other areas of the budget that passed last year, instead of spending new money. Republicans campaigned on a platformof shrinking government. The entire budget surplus should have been returned to taxpayers, not spent .

Two Republican legislators, Rep Munson and Rep Drazkowski voted against the spending bill. All other votes against the bill came from DFL members who felt the spending wasn't enough. Action 4 Liberty scored this bill.

Republican House Proposes Spending Surplus

Despite campaigningon a platform of shrinking government, Speaker Kurt Daudt and Republican leaders at the Capitol refuse to give backthe $329 Million Minnesota taxpayers were overcharged, opting instead to spend nearly 70% of it on more government. The House released a figureof $107 Million it planned to give back in tax relief. There are currently no specifics on who would receive the tax relief.

Action 4 Liberty and activists across the state called for the entire surplus to be returned to taxpayers and not one dime more spent on new government spending. The state government is currently operating under a two-year budget that was passed last year.

On top of spending an additional $222 Million of general funds, Republican Leadership in St Paul is also looking to add an additional $825 Million of spending as debt on the state credit card.

Make sure to share your disapproval of this budget proposal with your legislator and ask them to vote against these omnibus bills that grow government.


Republican Leadership Planning to Spend the Surplus?


We keep hearing on the campaign trail from Republican leaders that government is too big, but when push comes to shove, it seems like they always end up growing it even bigger. Now Minnesota is faced with an excellent opportunity to shrink the size of government by conforming to the new Trump Tax cuts, but word on the street is that Speaker Kurt Daudt wants to go the other direction and grow government.

If you aren't aware, odd years in the Legislature are meant to be budget years.  Last year, the Legislature increased the two-year budget by 9.5%, a whopping $4 Billion of growth. This session, the Legislature is supposed to focus on policy changes, but they have come across almost $700 million more dollars in tax revenue than original projects due to Trump’s federal tax changes (which currently don't align with Minnesota tax laws). Thousands of Minnesota taxpayers are paying more in taxes.

You are being over taxed!!

The February economic forecast projected a $329 Million budget surplus.  In other words, the government is overtaxing you by a lot of money. The $329 Million Budget surplus should be returned to the taxpayers,not spent.

Unfortunately, Republican Kurt Daudt is caving to Mark Dayton and looking to spend it on more government, more wasteful projects and more pork. The Legislature should not spend one more dime of taxpayer money this year. State government is already operating under a bloated two-year budget.

Call your legislator today and tell them to give the surplus back and reduce spending. Don't cave to liberal Governor Mark Dayton and Speaker Kurt Daudt.


Bill to Reduce Income Tax Rates

A bill introduced by Rep Jerry Hertaus (R - Loretto) would reduce marginal income tax rates for Minnesota taxpayers by up to 18% (HF3811). Tax policy is a big issue this year at the State Capitol due to the passing of the federal tax law. Currently, if the legislature does not pass any new law, Minnesota tax filers will have to file additional forms with the MN Department of Revenue and some will have to pay more in taxes. Efforts are moving through both the House and Senate to conform to the new tax law.

Hertaus' bill would cut all marginal tax rates, giving taxpayers across the board a reduction. Here's a sample of the cuts for married couples filling jointly:

(1) On the first $35,480 $37,850, 5.35 4.35 percent;

(2) On all over $35,480 $37,850, but not over $140,960 $150,380, 7.05 6.05 percent;

(3) On all over $140,960 $150,380, but not over $250,000 $266,700, 7.85 6.85 percent;

(4) On all over $250,000 $266,700, 9.85 8.85 percent.

(Note: underlined numbers represent the new change to the current law)

HF3811 has five coauthors, including the chairs of the two House Tax Committees. Action 4 Liberty has added this bill to our watchlist on mnscorecard.comand calls upon House Leadership to pass the bill.

The companion bill in the MN Senate is authored by Sen Roger Chamberlain, chair of the Senate Tax Committee.