The News Tribune Opinion page published informative commentaries from Ashley Grimm and Joe Macor, candidates for District 3 St. Louis County commissioner. Macor claimed he would remember who is spending our money. What he did not seem to know was that if federal and state governments do not send local governments — counties, cities, school districts, and townships — adequate aid, they have to cut programs like Macor’s tax-supported business or increase real estate taxes.
I see candidate Macor's lawn signs with those for President Donald Trump and other Republicans. He does not seem to know that the reason our property taxes have increased is because Republicans have reduced progressive income taxes in Washington and St. Paul. From President Ronald Reagan to the Trump administration, rich people's income taxes have been reduced by 79%. The same happened in Minnesota when the GOP gained majorities in the Legislature and governorships: Republicans decreased income taxes.
Minnesota has lost around $10 billion of its budget. That is why our state does not have enough revenue to fund education, which is half the state's budget. College tuition has risen, and our children and grandchildren are in debt. Minnesota local governmental units and schools are not receiving enough to fund education and other services, so local elected officials do not have adequate funding for our schools and other services.
Seventeen states and many local governments have combined administrative services to reduce duplications and saved millions of dollars. I hope our candidates and incumbents will do this.
The writer was a Minnesota state representative from 1973 to 1980 and from 1985-2008.