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My productive visit to St. Cloud to talk about the refugee resettlement program

Our treatment by Congress and presidents back to George H. W. Bush has been downright shabby. The refugee resettlement program is a federal program; it was supposed to be paid for by federal tax dollars. Instead, the bulk of the funds and hard work come from state and local funds, with the burden on communities like St. Cloud. It sets people up for conflict with refugees rather than success. We must insist that Congress do its job and revisit this program....

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Business Complaints Lead City to Reconsider Tax Disguised as Fee

The administrative state operates largely under the radar. Yet every once in a while the public gets a peek at the way things really work, how regulations written by anonymous agencies lead to higher costs for businesses in the form of taxes disguised as fees that ultimately get passed on to consumers. The latest example involves the cost of compliance with an obscure new environmental rule in a case covered by the Duluth News Tribune. The city of Hermantown is continuing to discuss its proposed stormwater utility fee after experiencing pushback from the city's business community, which argues the fee disproportionately affects them. The...

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Minnesota’s House tax bill is a step in the right direction, but a small one

The House tax bill, passed last night, is an improvement on the Governor's tax hike. But for all the talk of tax cuts, this is really only proposing to keep the tax burden on Minnesotans at about the current level. Our state is one of the most heavily taxed in the country. Even after the proposed rate cuts, that will still be the case. To improve our state's lackluster economic performance, our policymakers will need to take bolder steps to reduce the tax burden on Minnesotans. ...

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Minneapolis Residents Revolt Over Skyrocketing Property Valuations

Leftists often say they're happy to pay taxes. So why the outrage from hundreds of residents in the reliably one party city of Minneapolis suddenly flooding City Hall with complaints about their skyrocketing property tax assessments? The backlash caught the attention of the Star Tribune.   Concerns about unjustified real estate tax hikes have contributed to more than 1,386 property owners disputing the city’s market-price assessments, according to the city. That’s an 83 percent increase from 2017 and more than four times the number filed in 2013. Joann Greenwell, a retired Minneapolis schoolteacher, filed an appeal after the assessed value of her roughly 1,000-square-foot rambler in...

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Legislators Blink Over Backlash to Costly Eyelash Extension Regs

Legislators didn't bat an eye two years ago, passing licensing regulations for eyelash extension technicians. Despite warnings licensing would ultimately drive up costs and drive out businesses, most lawmakers voted for it anyway. But the Republican legislator overseeing a slew of occupational licensing regulations that session charged ahead anyway, citing public safety issues in the hearings covered by Session Daily. Rep. Nick Zerwas (R-Elk River), who chairs the House Subcommittee on Licensing, recognizes the broader criticism and prefers free-market solutions. But he said this session’s bills deal with health care components, which puts them into a different category due to the risk...

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