The Center of the American Experiment surveyed Minnesotans on a number of timely political issues in the latest edition of Thinking Minnesota, including the state’s $1.5 billion budget surplus, $15 minimum wage ordinances, and the Metropolitan Council.
As The Minnesota Sun has reported, both St. Paul and Minneapolis have passed $15 minimum wage ordinances, but the Center’s new poll shows that nearly half of all Minnesotans (47 percent) agree that these policies will hurt small businesses. Twenty-one percent think that a $15 minimum wage ordinance could hurt small businesses, but is still worth “the negative effects.”
On the issue of the state’s budget surplus, half of Minnesotans would like to see it invested in education (34 percent) or improving roads (16 percent). Another 29 percent want it to be returned to the taxpayers, while 11 percent believe it should be used on an overall tax cut.
Additionally, 76 percent of Minnesotans would like to see spending cut by 10 to 20 percent across the board, and 71 percent want personal income taxes lowered for all brackets. According to the Center, cutting state spending and lowering taxes are consistently popular proposals in its polling.
Despite conservative objections, more than half of Minnesotans (67 percent) think the state should impose a requirement that 50 percent of its energy come from wind and solar power. Inversely, only 49 percent believe that the permitting process for mining projects should be streamlined.
The Minnesota Sun has published a number of stories on the Met Council’s influence over transportation and housing policy in the state, and it is currently under federal review over its undemocratic structure. Of the 400 similar organizations across the country, the Met Council is the only Metropolitan Planning Organization exempted from having elected officials serve on its board.
The Center’s poll found that 48 percent of Minnesotans think the Met Council’s power should be reigned in.
You can read the full issue of Thinking Minnesota here.
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Anthony Gockowski is managing editor of Battleground State News and The Minnesota Sun. Follow Anthony on Twitter. Email tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo “Minimum Wage Protests” by Fibonacci Blue. CC BY 2.0.