The Minnesota Senate will work with Gov. Jesse Ventura's two-year budget and listen to the public's feedback in upcoming legislative hearings, said Senate President Don Samuelson, DFL-Brainerd.
"In the Senate we will pass sustainable tax relief, and we will pass genuine tax reform," Samuelson said. Senate Democrats will give the governor's tax proposal a full hearing, he added.
"We want balance, balance, balance," Samuelson said. "Our plan will balance sustainable tax cuts with needed investments. Our tax relief and reform will include balanced tax cuts for all Minnesotans, not just a few. And we will strike a balance for all areas of Minnesota, recognizing that we are one state, and some communities have fallen on hard times."
Kinkel opposes wine sales in grocery stores
Sen. Tony Kinkel, DFL-Park Rapids, announced he will oppose legislation permitting wine sales in metro grocery stores.
"While the bill affects only the metro area, it is a genie in a wine bottle," Kinkel said.
"It won't be long before there are demands to sell wine in grocery stores statewide," he said. "When access to alcohol expands, consumption increases. When consumption increases, public health and safety suffer. I simply cannot support increasing access to alcohol."
Several cities in Senate District Four, including Nisswa, Park Rapids, Nevis, Bemidji and Walker, have passed resolutions opposing the measure, he said.
Walz wants to amend constitution
ST. PAUL -- Rep. Dale Walz, R-Brainerd, is proposing a constitutional amendment to clearly state that the right to bear arms is fundamental in Minnesota.
If it passes, the bill would propose a question to the voters in the 2002 state election: "Should the Minnesota Constitution be amended to provide that the right of a citizen to keep and bear arms for the defense and security of the person, family or home or for lawful hunting, recreation or marksmanship training is fundamental and shall not be abridged?"
"I'll do the first part and work to get the bill through the Legislature," Walz said. "And I'll leave it up to the people of Minnesota to decide whether they want to approve the amendment."
The bill has had its first reading in the House and will move through the committee process.
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