Thank you for visiting our site. Senate District 48 DFL is made up of Southern Minnetonka and the majority of Eden Prairie. We bring together two vibrant communities with a diverse population. We believe it’s a great area to live and raise a family.
We also believe, as Sen. Wellstone said, “As free citizens in a political democracy we have a responsibility to be interested and involved in the affairs of the human community.” So, if you’re interested in learning more about what we believe in and are doing, please visit our site often. If you’re interested in getting involved in helping to move our communities, state and country forward to a progressive future, please contact us. There are lots of ways you can get involved. See you soon!
Posted by SD48 DFL Communications Team in News
By Ken Martin, chairman, Minnesota DFL
Senate Republicans recently announced their major education proposal of the year, claiming that their plan is designed to help rural school districts catch up to suburban neighbors. Make no mistake: this bill was designed to put talking points first, and responsible policy second. It may appear to be a great idea at the outset, but the flat increase proposed by Senate GOP members does a disservice to the students that most need our support.
It’s true that additional money is needed in Minnesota school districts, and if it took political convenience to finally persuade the Senate Republican caucus of this fact, then that’s at least some progress. The problem is that by giving every district the same per-pupil increase, this plan actually helps most rural districts comparatively less. Many schools need additional money for special education costs, expenses related to growing diversity, and especially high transportation costs in rural communities. On top of all that, drawing away from the formula means that fewer dollars will be allocated to early childhood family education (ECFE) programs across the state. In light of recent DFL investments in all-day kindergarten and other initiatives designed to help our youngest Minnesotans, this seems particularly irresponsible. (more…)
Minnesota’s State Economist and state budget experts at Minnesota Management and Budget (MMB) announced that over the last three months, the state’s budget surplus has grown substantially – thanks in large part to Minnesota’s strong and growing economy. The state’s total projected surplus to $1.869 billion for the next two years – a stark contrast to the $6.2 billion budget deficit Gov. Dayton inherited when he first took office in January 2011.
Again, we have a budget surplus because more people and working and working at higher wages – 182,000 jobs have been added since 2011 and we have the 5th lowest unemployment rate in the nation – and lower state spending. We do not have a budget surplus because Minnesotan’s are “overtaxed.”
Still, there is a lot more work to do to connect more Minnesotans with good-paying jobs, ensure all Minnesota children receive excellent educations, fix our aging roads and bridges, improve our transit systems, and secure an even brighter future for all Minnesotans. Those are the priorities the Governor is proposing to address this session.
“I propose that we invest our collective good fortune in our collective better future for ourselves, for our children, and for our grandchildren, and for the generations that will follow,” Gov. Dayton said. “Since we may not have the same opportunities in the years ahead, it’s even more important that we do it now.”
The Governor noted that he will release his final supplemental budget proposal in the second week of March, but in the wake of the budget surplus news he unveiled these investments:
Universal pre-K – The Governor’s initial budget proposal included the funding necessary to pay for half of the cost of providing free pre-school for every 4-year-old in Minnesota. Today, the Governor proposed investing additional resources to cover the entire cost of universal pre-K – an investment that would help prepare 31,000 young learners for success in school, narrow the state’s achievement gap and save Minnesota families thousands of dollars in child care costs.
Tuition freezes – Two years ago, Gov. Dayton and the Legislature froze tuition at the University of Minnesota and MnSCU campuses statewide. Today, the Governor proposed to do it again. His proposal would freeze tuition at the University of Minnesota for the next two years. It would freeze tuition at MnSCU for the first year of the biennium, and provide half the funding needed to freeze tuition in the second year – asking MnSCU to make up the other half through administrative savings.
Student grants – In 2013, the Governor and Legislature made a major investment in the State Grant Program, providing more financial aid to help make higher education more affordable for tens of thousands of Minnesota students. Today, the Governor proposed building on that investment, making college still more affordable for even more Minnesota students.
Protecting Children – Last fall, Gov. Dayton convened a Child Protection Task Force, charging the group with providing a set of recommendations that would help protect children in Minnesota from the threat of abuse and neglect. Today, the Governor proposed that the state set aside $50 million to implement the expected recommendations of the Child Protection Task Force.
Republican plan for surplus
While Gov. Dayton proposes to invest the budget surplus in areas that will continue to grow our economy, Speaker of the House Kurt Daudt is looking for one-time payouts and, as noted from the Governor’s office, is overpromising the surplus dollars:
“March is Women’s History Month, and this year’s theme is ‘Weaving the Stories of Women’s Lives.’ This theme provides us an important opportunity to ensure that we, as a nation, are including the stories, struggles, and successes of women into the American narrative.
“Women have been deeply ingrained in the fabric of our nation’s history from the very beginning. From Abigail Adams’ role as unofficial adviser to the president, to Sandra Day O’Connor serving as the first female member of the United States Supreme Court, to Nancy Pelosi’s tenure as Speaker of the House of Representatives, we have come a long way. Celebrating the women who have come before us is essential to continuing our march toward total equality for women. We stand on these women’s shoulders, and without knowing and understanding the stories of our foremothers, we have nothing to stand on. (more…)
In the Know
Mar. 2, 2015
- 11 a.m. – The Senate meets in session.
- 3:30 p.m. – The House meets in session.
- Lt. Gov. Smith will meet with representatives of Hazeltine National Golf Course regarding the 2016 Ryder Cup 2016 preparations.
In Ward 7 convention, Jane Prince squeaks out DFL nomination, Pioneer Press
Dayton signs bill retracting commissioner pay raises for now, Albert Lea Tribune
Doubled Minnesota budget surplus raises the stakes for coming legislative battles, MinnPost
Rand Paul wins CPAC straw poll, with Scott Walker right behind, Politico
Wisconsin’s Walker, possible 2016 contender, admits flipping to tougher line on immigration, Star Tribune
AP sources: Democratic Sen. Mikulski to announce retirement, MPR
Salary campaign already in a mailbox near you, Pioneer Press
PoliGraph: MN Action Network flier omits key details, MPR
Affordable Care Act