Sen. John Marty said he generally supports Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton's proposed state budget and tax plan, saying it includes a needed boost for education spending.
"I have looked at bits and pieces (of Dayton's plan) and overall I like the direction," said Marty, a DFLer from Roseville. "He (Dayton) is making wise investment in education, not only in early eduction but in higher education."
Marty contended that Minnesota hasn't done well, in recent years, in spending for higher education and, as a result, the state's competitive standing has fallen. (Click on to this link to see a blog from s staffer at 20/20.)
"When you let yourself slide, you hurt yourself in the long run," Marty said, who added that he likes "a lot" of what is in Dayton's tax plan. Last month, Dayton unveiled a proposed state budget and tax plan that would, among other things, lower Minnesota's sales tax from 6.875 percent to 5.5 percent but also dramatically broaden the categories covered by tax including an array of business services.
Marty said that when Dayton ran for election in 2010. "he made it clear in his campaign that he wanted to have a tax code that is less regressive. He is moving in the right direction (with the new plan)."
Asked about business community concerns over Dayton's plan to expand the sales tax to cover more services, Marty said, "I've not heard from that many businesses." He added that "very few people like to pay taxes" but it is the price we pay for a civilized society that affords its citizens good infrastructure, education and safety.
"Some higher-income people say 'Yes, we can do more'," Marty said.
Currently, the state Legislature is gathering information from various parties about their thoughts on the governor's budget and tax plan "to see what people like and don't like, and to make adjustments."
To see more Patch coverage on Dayton's budget and tax plan, click on to these stories:
Dayton's Tax Plan Stirs Readers' Debate
Roseville Business Community Wary of Dayton's Tax Plan