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About five percent of Minnesotans really, really don't like governor Mark Dayton's proposals for their future. Dayton wants lawmakers to agree to a new top income tax bracket of nearly 11 percent for those earning over $150 thousand, plus an additional 3% for those bringing in over a half million a year. And that, says the legislature's tax committee chair, Preston representative Greg Davids, is how you soak the rich. And how you drive them out of the state. Davids says giving Minnesota the top income tax bracket in the nation will only drive those top earners to other states. He predicts failure for Dayton's proposals in the house and senate .
The Monroe County Justice Center referendum is a dead deal for the time being. County Board Chair Rick Irwin says there is just not enough time to draft one before the February 22nd deadline. But he says its not a step back.
Iwrin says he is confident the process will remain on track as long as the board is moving forward.
An unofficial show of hands showed 23 supervisors thought something had to be done with the justice center in Sparta, and 20 would consider a downtown site for a new jail and justice center.
Several schools in the area have called off school in anticipation of protest actions against governor Walker's proposal to strip most public workers of much of their collective bargaining rights. La Crosse, West Salem, Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau, Bangor, and Holmen are among the districts that are closed as teachers are expected to convene on the state capitol. A vote is nearing in the capital on the collective bargaining rights issue as well as other proposals to have union workers pay more of their own pensions and health care costs. Law enforcement and firefighter unions are exempt from the proposed changes.
It's hard to think of $350 million as being an insufficient amount of money.
But it might be a little less than necessary when it comes to cleaning up the Great Lakes. $350 million is how much president Obama's new budget has in it for lake clean-up. Actually, a 25 percent cut from funding last year. The group, Clean Wisconsin, is pushing for congress to approve at least $300 million for Great Lakes clean-up. Ezra Meyer, with the environmental group, says those hundreds of millions are really just a portion of the billions that is needed to do clean up of generations of industry, toxicity and invasive species in the lakes.