Rosen: Walz budget ‘unsustainable’

ST. PAUL – State Sen. Julie Rosen, R-Vernon Center, is not a fan of the budget proposed Tuesday by Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz.

Rosen says Walz has offered a $49 billion budget that represents a 9 percent increase from the previous budget, and sets Minnesota on a path to government-run health care.

“The governor’s budget is simply unsustainable and unaffordable,” Rosen said in a press release. “Nearly doubling the gas tax? Increases in license tab fees? Reinstating the tax on sick people? More money for child care assistance with no reforms to stop pervasive fraud? A total government takeover of health care by the same folks who brought us MNLARS and MNsure, without even attempting lower costs? This budget might be good for his special interests, but it’s not good for Minnesota families.”

Rosen says Walz’s budget would:

o Increase state spending by 9 percent in one budget cycle;

o Increase taxes on every Minnesotan by more than $3 billion, including:

n $1.3 billion gas tax increase

n $991 million “sick tax” increase

n $848 million through selective Minnesota tax conformity to the federal tax bill

n $74 million tax increase by clawing back bipartisan tax relief from 2017; and

o End permanent, bipartisan funding for roads and bridges. Replace by almost doubling the gas tax, a revenue source that declines each year starting in 2020.

Ziegler stepping down in W’bago

WINNEBAGO — There was some unexpected news at a recent Winnebago City Council meeting.

City administrator Chris Ziegler notified the council by letter that he is resigning effective Feb. 22. Ziegler, who lives out of town, was unable to attend the meeting because of poor road conditions.

“Chris has been a huge asset to the city of Winnebago,” said council member Jean Anderson. “I value the time he spent with us; he will be missed.”

Ziegler had been city administrator for the past six years. Prior, he served for four years on the City Council and two years as administrative assistant for the city.

He will begin his new job as fiscal supervisor for Human Services of Faribault and Martin Counties on March 4.

“There is never a perfect time to leave,” Ziegler said. “It was just time for a change and I feel I have left the city in good shape for the transition.”

Information provided by staff writer Kevin Mertens of the Faribault County Register.