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Minnesotans React to Continued Govt. Shutdown

July 13, 2011, 6:00 PM by Peggy Moyer

Minnesotans React to Continued Govt. Shutdown
JASPER, MN - It's day 13 of the Minnesota state government shutdown and there's no end in sight.

DFL Governor Mark Dayton is on a statewide tour talking about K-12 funding and his plan for closing the state's $5 billion budget deficit Senator Doug Magnus, who represents Southwest Minnesota, says the governor's plan to increase Human Services spending by 20 percent is the real problem.

Magnus says Dayton is trying to frustrate Minnesotans with the shutdown so they pressure their lawmakers.

“It's a deliberate attempt to not only put state workers out of work, but also our constructions workers out of work through just the deliberate cause to cause as much pain as possible,” Magnus said.

Republicans say Dayton should be at the capitol working on the budget and not touring the state. Dayton's plan calls for a tax increase on the state's wealthiest which republicans say they cannot vote for.

With no end to the shutdown in sight, there are a lot of state employees out of work and government services shut down.

From the big cities to the smaller towns, Minnesota residents are talking about the government shutdown.

Many we caught up with today said it was time for the budget battle to end because the people are the ones who are losing, and that is not what lawmakers were elected to do.

"I think they should do their job. Everybody is hard-nosed right now," carpenter Dan Straw of Jasper said.

Straw wishes Minnesota lawmakers and Governor Mark Dayton would come to an agreement on the state's spending plan. Straw finds him self more on the governor's side which calls for a tax increase among the state's wealthiest population.

"The taxes aren't all that high. I think they're lower now than they have been for years and rich people pay a fair amount, but they aren't paying for as much as they used to in the 50s or 60s, if you look at the percentage rates, not even close," Straw said.

"I believe compromise obviously will come to play sometime and preferably within the course of the next week or two," Pipestone teacher Craig Boeddeker said.

Craig Boeddeker remains optimistic but hopes compromise comes before the beginning of the new school year because he's a teacher in Pipestone.

"We know within the government now there are several things they've identified as being essential and I would wonder if many public schools might identify that which is essential," Boeddeker said.

Cindy Lange spends most of her time cooking here at Jasper Lanes. She also bought the bar in Troskey and she's frustrated with the state of Minnesota because she can't get her liquor license or food license to open the place.

Lange says the state took more than a month and a half to respond to her request to open the business in the first place, and now she says the state is costing her money every day she can't open it.

Hundreds of restaurants and bars in Minnesota are not able to renew liquor licenses right now and fear they will run out of supplies soon.

Also, nurses, dentists and other professionals can't get the licenses necessary to open or continue their practices.

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