PNS Daily News - December 11, 2019 

U.S. House to vote on two articles of impeachment; $1.4 trillion in planned oil & gas development said to put the world in a "a bright red level" of climate crisis; anti-protest legislation moving forward in Ohio; "forest farming" moving forward in Appalachia; and someone is putting cowboy hats on pigeons in Nevada.

2020Talks - December 11, 2019 

18 years ago today, China joined the WTO. Now, China's in a trade war with the U.S. Also, House Democrats and the Trump administration made a deal to move forward with the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement.

Governor Acts on Final Bills - Lawmakers React

June 1, 2007

St. Paul, MN – Gov. Pawlenty's vetoes this week of major spending bills are drawing praise and criticism. Supporters say they hold down state spending. But others, such as House Majority Leader Tony Sertich, say the rejections, especially of the tax bill, deny Minnesotans essential needs and services.

“That bill would have provided property tax relief, and local government aid to many communities to help with police, fire, and other basic services. In the last four years, [taxes have] increased almost $2 billion. And, now we're looking at another half billion dollars. It's just very unfair to our small businesses, our seniors, our families, those folks living on a fixed income. So, if we were to have a special session, it would be a top priority for us again.”

The measure had over $70 million for local governments and $33 million in property tax relief. The governor says he vetoed it because it factored inflation into future budget forecasts. Sertich notes that provision was designed to promote honest accounting. He expressed great disappointment in the veto because the tax bill included provisions to close corporate tax loopholes. He believes that's not fair to Minnesotans who pay their fair share.

“Right now, there are some corporations that can claim that they're making money offshore when they're really making the money in Minnesota. And, they're not paying their taxes, This would have closed up that loophole, and it would have been a fairness issue, and not have passed the buck on to our businesses , or individuals that are paying their fair share.”

Only the governor can call a special session to revisit any of the unfinished business, and there are no indications he will. If not, Sertich adds, lawmakers will try again next year.

Bills the governor signed include funding for transportation, special education and a higher education measure designed to hold down tuition.

Jim Wishner/Eric Mack, Public News Service - MN