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Minnesota GOP Plan Hits Agencies, Social Services

Minnesota State CapitolST. PAUL  (AP) — Minnesota GOP senators are making their hardest spending cuts at social service programs, state agencies and aid programs for local governments and public colleges.

Budget targets released Thursday offer the first look at how legislators will tackle a $5 billion budget deficit.

Majority Republicans largely leave spending for K-12 education intact, although they would continue a state payment delay.

Social service programs that serve the poor, elderly and disabled would have to get by with about $1.6 billion less than they were anticipating.

Money for higher education, aid programs for local governments and state agency operations would fall by hundreds of millions of dollars each compared with projected spending.

Details about how the GOP proposes to spend $34.2 billion over the next two years will be released in coming weeks.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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