Budget Fine Print: More Fines For Texting Drivers, Park Fees
ST. PAUL (AP) - Getting caught texting while driving could carry a steeper fine. Entrance fees at Minnesota state parks would rise slightly to pay for upkeep. Meat, poultry, canning and other food-production plants would be more likely to come under inspection thanks to beefed-up budgets.
Small but notable changes like these are sprinkled throughout Gov. Mark Dayton's proposed two-year budget.
The Department of Public Safety wants to double the current $50 fine in cases of repeat offenders in hopes of deterring the habit.
To help maintain parks, the Department of Natural Resources wants to raise annual vehicle permit fees from $25 to $30 and the daily rate from $5 to $6.
Dayton's budget recommends about $30 million in new or adjusted fees. Most are tied to regulation or inspections of specific industries.