From: Doug Baker
Sen. Sharon Erickson Ropes is running from town meeting to town meeting telling these folks they have to find ways to cut the budget. To my way of thinking, the DFL in Minnesota and the Democratic Party nationally has caused much of the mess.
Two years ago the Republicans handed the new DFL controlled Legislature a 2-billion-dollar surplus. Immediately, the Minnesota Senate raised their own income by voting themselves an extra $96.00 per day and year- round housing allowance. I know many folks would love to have $96 to spend on groceries for a week. What were these leaders thinking when they gave themselves $96 per day? Year round housing for a part-time commitment is not being cost conscious for our benefit. They are only in St. Paul for about five months. Their raise was a slap in the face to the voters. Where is the sacrifice on the part of our DFL leaders?
The DFL after increasing taxes by $6.6 billion dollars and with the state already in deficit wanted to bond $1 billion dollars for things like:
$70 million for the Central Corridor light rail line
$38 million to expand the Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center
$11 million for gorilla cages at the Como zoo
$4 million for a Rochester volleyball court
$3 million for “predesign” work on renovations at Minneapolis’ Orchestra Hall
$2 million for Minneapolis to purchase lights that “preserve the natural night environment”?
Now, when we are headed for hard times, why is it the townships, cities and schools that are asked to cut?