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01/08/2013

THE START OF A NEW LEGISLATIVE SESSION MEANS A MOVE FOR STATE REPRESENTATIVE BOB GUNTHER OF FAIRMONT. WE CAUGHT UP WITH HIM ON MOVING DAY MONDAY AS HE WAS TRANSFERRING HIS OFFICE FROM ONE ROOM TO ANOTHER. IT IS TRADITION AT THE STATE LEGISLATURE FOR HOUSE MEMBERS TO SWITCH OFFICE SPACE WHEN THE MAJORITY CHANGES AT THE STATE CAPITOL. THAT HAPPENED AFTER LAST YEAR'S ELECTION WHEN DEMOCRATS TOOK MAJORITIES IN BOTH THE HOUSE AND SENATE. REP. GUNTHER SAID THIS IS THE 5TH MOVE IN HIS TENURE.

AS FOR THE CHANGE IN LEADERSHIP BOB GUNTHER SAYS HE EXPECTS SOME ENVIRONMENTAL RESTRICTIONS ON BUSINESS AND A TAX INCREASE TO BE A PART OF THIS YEAR'S SESSION.

BONDING BILLS USED TO BE DEALT WITH EVERY OTHER YEAR BUT GUNTHER SAYS HE WOULD EXPECT A SMALL BONDING BILL TO COME OUT OF THE LEGISLATIVE SESSION FOR THE FIFTH STRAIGHT YEAR. HE HAS BEEN NAMED TO THE CAPITAL INVESTMENT COMMITTEE. AFTER A YEAR OF SURPLUS REP. GUNTHER SAYS THE STATE FACES OVER A BILLION DOLLARS IN DEFICIT THIS YEAR DUE TO THE PAYING BACK OF THE SCHOOL FUNDING SHIFT OF THE PAST LEGISLATURES BUDGET CUTTING EFFORTS.

DESPITE BEING IN THE MINORITY THIS YEAR REP. GUNTHER SAID HE HOPES TO BE ABLE TO WORK WITH OTHER LEGISLATORS ON THINGS SUCH AS JOB TRAINING PROGRAMS.

BOB GUNTHER SAYS ANOTHER ISSUE TO BE ACTED ON THIS YEAR IS A FUNDING FIX FOR THE NEW MINNESOTA VIKING STADIUM SINCE ELECTRONIC PULL TAB GAMING REVENUES ARE COMING IN LOWER THAN PROJECTED.


ROD HALVORSEN
© 2013 KSUM.


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