Budget Committee Meets
Representative John Nygren and Senator Darling meet with the media before Thursday's budget meeting
The Joint Committee on Finance is back at it and looking to wrap up our work on the state budget. On Thursday, we voted on some important items including the Department of Natural Resources, funding for Public Defenders, and the Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection.
I am thrilled to report that we are eliminating an entire tax! The Forestry Mill Tax has been around since the 1930's and it's time for it to go. Eliminating the tax will save about $27 for an average homeowner, and it's a big step in the right direction. One line of your property tax bill will now say "0." That's great news for taxpayers.
This week, we also voted to protect our state's air and water quality. By investing more money in prevention and mitigation, our lakes and rivers will be cleaner and safer.
We all have a constitutional right to have an attorney represent us, but in many rural areas there just aren't enough attorneys. We voted to provide a modest pay raise to help make sure there are more public defenders to represent everyone who needs one.
On Monday, we will take up the Department of Public Instruction and state building projects. We are in the home stretch for the budget now.