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MN GOP’s Phase 1 Budget Fix Has Familiar Ring

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Phase one of the proposed budget fix from Minnesota’s legislative Republicans would replicate temporary spending cuts made under former Gov. Tim Pawlenty.

GOP leaders on Monday said they hoped to extract $1 billion in savings by not letting spending suppressed on a one-time basis spring back. Those cuts affected aid programs for local governments and public colleges as well as financial assistance to low-income renters and people receiving publicly subsidized health care.

The timing of the plan is noteworthy.

By moving quickly, Republicans see a chance to reduce the state’s $6.2 billion budget deficit before a new economic forecast is issued. They would also be getting ahead of Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton, who won’t detail his full budget until Feb. 15.

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

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