St. Cloud Chamber President Calls Governor’s Budget ‘Shocking’
ST. CLOUD -- Earlier this week Minnesota Governor Tim Walz laid out his budget proposal for the next two-year budget cycle, which includes a tax increase for the wealthiest residents and larger corporations.
St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce President Teresa Bohnen says it wouldn't be good for businesses in the state.
Frankly, it's pretty shocking that amount of increase he's asking for, after everything all of the businesses have been through for the last year it's pretty amazing he would put something like this forward. It raises taxes over $3 billion over the next four years. It's really a big boost.
Bohnen says, if it passed, it would put Minnesota into one of the highest tax rates in the nation ahead of New York and just behind California and Hawaii. She says the corporate tax rate the governor is proposing would increase by more than 11 percent, which would force the highest-income individuals out of the state.
Meanwhile, President Joe Biden has been pushing Congress to pass a third federal stimulus package to help with relief from COVID-19. However, Bohnen would rather see the federal government take a step back before passing another massive bill.
I really think we need to take a breath and find out where all this money is coming from and how people are spending it. It's essential, we needed to get it out there in the hands of businesses, they've got it now. Let's see how this works before we start throwing more money out there. Really focus on specific industries and specific places where the money needs to be versus blanketing the money out there and giving it to everybody.
Bohnen says she's concerned these large relief packages will have a negative impact on inflation and the economy in the future.
She says the local chamber's annual spring trip to Washington D.C. has been canceled, but she is hopeful to be able to go out there in June with the Minnesota Chamber.