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Open Forum: Tax hikes devastating

Tax hikes devastating

While the State of Minnesota recently received some great news about the financial situation of our state, local property tax payers didn’t see the same good news. Many taxpayers saw significant increases — resulting from the majority party’s elimination of the Homestead Credit, and cuts to Local Government Aid.

When I opened my own Truth-in-Taxation statement, I saw that my property taxes had increased 25 percent, even while my home’s market value actually decreased. And from what I’ve heard from constituents, I’m not alone. Homeowners in north-central Minnesota towns are stuck, on average, with a 9 percent property tax hike. Due to elimination of the Homestead Credit, $3.8 million in market value credits for Crow Wing County that were paid by the state in 2011 will now be paid by property owners.

These tax hikes are devastating to seniors and families. Furthermore, property taxes are already the greatest burden for many small businesses. These hikes will only make it more difficult for companies to hire new workers or purchase new equipment.

Members of the majority party have said they were blindsided by these increases and they want to tweak the property tax changes they passed. All of this is a result of them ignoring statistical analysis that showed that property taxes would increase if the Homestead Credit was eliminated or LGA was cut. Members of the minority party warned them, the Department of Revenue warned them, and local officials around the state warned them, but were ignored.

This is what happens when a state budget steals from schools, borrows from our future, and puts the deficit on the state’s credit card. The short-term budgeting needs to stop. It’s time to get back to responsible budgeting with a balanced approach and long-term solutions so that we can deliver a more prosperous Minnesota to our citizens.

Rep. John Ward


District 12A

Our new threat

It is no wonder our world is changing to a more liberal lifestyle and way of thinking. This was exemplified by our glorious local newspaper with their complete lack of acknowledgement of the day of infamy that took place on Dec.7 at Pearl Harbor, a day that should never be forgotten. We were attacked by an enemy and many Americans lost their lives and it plunged us into many years of struggle and war.

Today we struggle with an even more dangerous enemy, political correctness, we must wake up and call the enemy what it is, Muslim extremist and Sharia law threaten us more than the Japanese ever did. Our current administration, led by Barack Obama, is leading us down the slippery slope, we must wake up and remember Dec. 7 and begin a new path to eliminate the sleeping giant that threatens us now. Call it what you may but political correctness is complete incorrectness.

I admonish the Dispatch for their lack of will to remind us of our past and the loss of so many American lives.

Daryl Bahma


Thank you Brainerd lakes area.

I just want to thank everyone in the Brainerdlakes area for the generosity during the radiothon against child abuse. It was an emotional day for me to watch the donations continue to rise until the final second if the event!

As a survivor of child abuse, I know first hand how painful and debilitating the abuse can be to a person throughout their lives. One can only imagine what it is like being burdened with such an awful act. Well Brainerd and surrounding areas, you are doing a wonderful job at trying to make it possible that children never have to feel the pain and sadness associated with child abuse. Be proud of yourselves, I know I am proud of all of you!

I would like to throw a few thank-yous out: first and foremost the organizers of this wonderful event; you people are living saints if you ask me. I would also like to thank every single bidder (even if you didn’t get the donation), pledger and all the volunteers, please know your efforts are making a huge difference in this wonderful cause. To the winning bidder of the Babe Winkelman guided fishing trip, I am truly honored to be able to fish with you and your guest in the near future. Now lets just hope the fish cooperate!!! And the final thank you goes out to Babe Winkelman, Kris Winkelman, Donna Klimek and Jamie Hauge at Babe Winkelman Productions for the help in making our donation of a day guided fishing trip possible. I am truly honored to be employed by such a wonderful company!

Good fishing and God bless.

Nate Berg


Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
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