Friday, June 29, 2007

More local musings

In my notable absence fighting neo-conservative political operatives, this story flew under my radar.

Thank goodness for great minds like Chris Truscott and Dave Mindeman at mnpACT!.

Rep Ron Shimanski takes pride in his first year at the capitol as an obstructionist.

House members held the line against over $5 billion in new, job-killing tax
increases. In cooperation with the governor, who made very clear from the
beginning that there were some initiatives that would be "poison pills" - making
an entire bill unsignable - House members promoted the values that Minnesotans
hold dear.

It's the same rant he sent out in his constituent email as well.

Thankfully, Dave was around to set Shimanski straight.

$5 like a lot. But, a lot of that money was offset by property tax relief. New taxes on the wealthy to give a break to property owners already hit by a slumping housing market. That particular bill had a net increase in taxes of zero.

And one of the poison pills alluded to by Rep. Shimanski is an effort to take inflation into account for state budgeting. Most of you understand inflation... you know... the thing that made the Crosstown Project cost an additional 30% during a 3 year delay in execution. The thing consumers are noticing in the produce aisles. The increases the state takes into account on the revenue side of things but pretends doesn't exist for spending purposes.
In his hometown of Silver Lake, the top issue people talked to me about last year was property taxes. Shimanski failed his constituents and his hometown.

Another issue Shimanski failed to address deals with the Koch Industry / MinnCan pipeline debacle. Shimanski, a small farmer himself, failed to act to protect farmers near Lester Prairie and Plato, as pipeline representatives used coercive tactics in order to obtain permission to run the pipeline through their property.

The SC Times published a story today about the pipeline problems as well.
The owners of about 85 percent of those parcels have signed agreements giving Minnesota Pipe Line an easement across their property in exchange for a payment, company spokeswoman Patty Dunn said.

The owners of the remaining 15 percent haven't signed either because they haven't reached a financial agreement or because of objections to the project. The company filed petitions in 13 counties this week seeking condemnation of the easement tracts, Dunn said.

A blatant assault of property owners rights. Where are the conservatives on this? Tom Emmer? Ron Shimanski? Dean Urdahl? Why are you not protecting the private property rights of Minnesota's farmers?

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