Feb 19, 2013
President Obama, in his State of the Union address this month, proposed raising the minimum wage to $9.00 an hour. As recently as 2006 that rate was $5.15, and has been at its current level of $7.25 only since July 2009. The next day, as if not to be outdone, two Minnesota state legislators proposed raising Minnesota’s minimum wage to $9.50 per hour from $6.15 presently. (Minnesota businesses currently follow the federal minimum.)
Jan 31, 2013
Minnesota earned an unfavorable mention at the end of this Wall Street Journal article on states that are positioning themselves for growth and success by lowering their tax burden, even dropping the income tax in favor of a low, broad based sales tax.
Jan 29, 2013
While Dayton has tried to argue in his proposed budget that we rely too heavily on property taxes, Minnesota is in line with many states on the three legged stool (property, income and sales tax--all at about a third).
Jan 27, 2013
Governor Dayton has announced his budget and it includes a sales tax increase. You may hear that the rate on goods will fall to 5.5% from 6.875%. But the MMB presentation made after the governor included a slide that shows revenues from the sales tax will rise $2.1 billion in the next biennium under that plan.
Jan 27, 2013
Minnesota government General Fund spending was projected by MMB late last year to be $33.9 billion for the FY 12-13 biennium. Revenues came in $1.33 billion higher, and that money has paid off the FY 12-13 school shift and some of the earlier school shift. So let’s mark down total spending to be $35.2 billion.
Jan 22, 2013
Economist Alan Viard is one of the leading scholars of tax policy in the United States. In this article, first published in State Tax Notes in 2010, Viard explains the logic behind the broad consensus of economists that state sales taxes should generally exclude business to business purchases to avoid tax pyramiding.
Jan 22, 2013
The Minnesota Tax Expenditure Review Report (which I co-authored with Marsha Blumenthal, Laura Kalambokidis, P. Jay Kiedrowski, Judy Temple, and Jenny Wahl) agrees with economist Alan Viard’s call for treating state sales taxes as consumption taxes on final consumer purchases of goods and services. The Tax Expenditure Review Report rejects tax pyramiding:
Jan 16, 2013
Here is more proof that elections have consequences. The pension commission appointments were announced for 2013-2014.
Jan 14, 2013
Gov. Dayton’s Budget is Due January 22nd. Dayton proposed a $2 billion dollar tax increase to the GOP legislature in 2011 by moving the top income tax rate from 7.85 to 10.96 percent (plus 3 percent on top of that for the highest earners).
Dec 3, 2012
It is a puzzle that one of Minnesota's largest pension funds is now admitting that it's in bad shape---after denying any serious problems for the last several years in public testimony before the state pension commission.