Usually when a reader drops something off for me to read, I give it a casual read and file it. However, when Dispatch reader Bobby Thompson dropped off a photo copy of an article that appeared in the Farmers Independent, a weekly newspaper in Bagley, I found the article quite interesting.
Well, the fact that Mr. Thompson took the time to drop off this interesting article/commentary by Tom Burford, the Independent’s manager/editor, I thought it was important enough to read and share some of Burford’s thoughts with Dispatch readers.
The piece begins with a quote from Wisconsin Rep. Erik Severson: “Gov. Dayton is great for western Wisconsin.” A less than bashful Severson indicated his comment about Minnesota’s governor proposing new taxes on the state’s upper income residents and companies in the Gopher state has provoked a number of phone calls and letters.
I’m not surprised.
This Badger state representative gave Burford an overall assessment of that state’s economic health.
“Severson said one measure of their success is the unemployment level,” Burford stated. In 2010 the unemployment rate was close to 8 percent. Now? It’s closer to 6.2 percent.
When the western Wisconsin representative took office the state had a $2.6 billion deficit in the 2009-10 biennium. The Wisconsin budget was at $65.8 billion.
Severson crowed that the deficit had been erased and replaced with a budget surplus of $484 million in the 2011-12 biennium on a budget of $66 billion.
Severson was quick to note that Minnesota’s governor is proposing a high tax climate that was the culprit when Wisconsin chose to dump the Democratic Party rule after eight years of tax and spend.
Severson said property taxes in the Badger state have a cap on them and corporate taxes are beginning to recede from a high of 7.9 percent to 0.4 percent over five years. Further, school districts are no longer arbitrarily raising levies without voter approval.
“In the private sector, one of the most important rules for running a business is not spending more than you have,” Severson was quoted saying.
“Gov. (Scott) Walker and I have been working to make Wisconsin more business friendly. In just one year, Wisconsin jumped 17 spots on Chief Executive magazine’s list of the best states to do business,” Severson said. Some 94 percent of Wisconsin business owners responding to a recent survey said the state is on the right course.
Minnesota’s Chamber of Commerce, in contrast, found that only 28 percent of Minnesota businesses are contemplating expansion in the next two years.
Perhaps Gov. Dayton should pay attention to the potential job-snappers to our east and put off raising taxes.
Thanks, Bobby Thompson, for sharing this article from the Farmers Independent.