Minnesota's Big-Budget Bills: Year-Round Daylight Saving Time and More!
The Minnesota Legislature has already reached the finish line on Wednesday, allocating the $52 billion state government budget, which is expected to be used within the next two years. Many state residents wonder where this budget will go and if it includes making Daylight Saving Time permanent.
However, the lawmakers were unable to resolve the differences between the Democratic-controlled House and Republican-led Senate. As a result, they were forced to return for a special session that started on June 14.
To become more transparent, here are some of the sectors which will benefit from the big-budget bills:
The budget bill for commerce includes a student loan borrower's account of rights. Students should remember that it requires licensing for companies that service student loans, protecting students from predatory lenders.
The state government finance bill will soon end Minnesota's COVID-19 peacetime state of emergency. It will be effective on Thursday, which will reduce the emergency powers that Democratic Gov. Tim Walz has used to deal with the current pandemic.
"Forever chemicals" will soon be banned from food packaging in Minnesota. It is just one of the state's efforts to protect the environment.
- Health and Human Services
The health and human services budget will expand the postpartum coverage and the preventive care and benefits for children with asthma in the state's Medical Assistance program.
Schools will benefit from the big-budget bill since they will receive more money. There will be a 2.5% increase in per-pupil funding in the first year and 2% in the second.
The tuition in higher education increases which will be capped at 3.5% for the next two years for undergraduates in the Minnesota State colleges and universities system.
The budget bill will include public safety's new limits on no-knock warrants and confidential informants. As such, there will be a revamp on a statewide police misconduct database, creating an early warning system about bad officers. Not only that but 911 operators will also be required to refer specific calls to mental health crisis teams.
Daylight Saving Time is expected to last year-round if Congress authorizes states to make the change. This has been an idea that gained support in Washington, D.C., and other states.
There's good news for businesses that have received forgiveness on their loans from the federal Paycheck Protection Program during the pandemic. This is because they will be allowed to deduct the amount on their state income taxes fully. Aside from that, workers who have collected unemployment insurance payments can deduct up to $10,200.
The transportation bill consists of money for two new bus rapid transit lines. It includes the Twin Cities area, which connects downtown Minneapolis and the University of Minnesota with Edina, and downtown with Blaine.
The said sectors will be receiving a lot from the big-budget bill, but more sectors will benefit from it. Regarding UTC, Minnesota follows the Central Daylight Time (GMT -5), which will become year-round if Congress approves it.