Reader Opinion: Tax cut for veterans
The $23 million tax cut for veterans means a lot more to the veterans than it does to the state government of Minnesota. We the residents of Minnesota should be happy that Minnesota legislators have made the state provide this relief for our vete...
The $23 million tax cut for veterans means a lot more to the veterans than it does to the state government of Minnesota. We the residents of Minnesota should be happy that Minnesota legislators have made the state provide this relief for our veterans.
Some are arguing that it is wasteful to provide $23 million in military pension tax exemptions. This $23 million represents less than 0.065 percent of the state of Minnesota's yearly budget of more than $35 billion per year. The state of Minnesota should reduce every line item in the state budget by 0.065 percent to cover this relief for our veterans. This is the equivalent of $650 per $1 million of state spending. I assert that the state government wastes a lot more than this $23 million, as can be seen by Governor Dayton's push to raise the salaries of the highest ranking government employees. Tax relief for our veterans should come before pay increases for these government employees.
Relative to the populations of other states, the state of Minnesota has a relatively high budget. There is plenty of opportunity for the state of Minnesota to more wisely allocate tax collections. Providing tax relief to our veterans is a very, very small part of the state's budget but is very, very significant to our veterans.
Our veterans have earned much more than tax relief on their pensions. Our state legislators and governor should have been eager to provide them with tax relief.
Thanks to the following legislators for authoring the pension exemption bill and making it happen: Rep. Josh Heintzeman, R-Nisswa and Sen. Paul Gazelka, R-Nisswa.
I am not a veteran. I have family members that are veterans, but their residences are not in Minnesota.