We expect more from Dayton

Published 9:21 am Thursday, May 21, 2015

The past few weeks I have been listening to the debate on the bipartisan omnibus education finance bill that Gov. Mark Dayton has recently vetoed.  It spends $17.12 billion for fiscal years 2016-17 and includes a number of policies that empower teachers and schools, prioritize early childhood learning and provide fairer funding for schools.  I am happy that Rep. Peggy Bennett was able to be involved in this legislation, adding two of her bills: reduced state-mandated testing and denial of an appeal hearing to anyone convicted of a child sex crime who has had their teaching license denied/revoked. I wish the governor would listen to teachers and empower them to teach our students.

Since day one of the 2015 legislative session, House Republicans have set out to ensure every child — regardless of zip code — receives a world-class education. After listening to Minnesotans, the House Republican majority has developed a bipartisan solution that puts kids first, new money with innovative reforms. That bill passed the House, and the DFL-controlled Senate, including getting votes of yes from Rep. Bennett and Sen. Sparks.  It is very disappointing the DFL governor is wasting our taxpayer money on a special session that he has said can be held in a big tent on the Capitol lawn due to renovations.  If Dayton’s circus fails, he’ll have to own the shutdown that he caused.

In a press conference on Tuesday to officially announce his veto, Gov. Dayton said that Rep. Bennett and other GOP legislators, “Hate the public schools.” Peggy spent 33 years as a public school teacher and she thinks of those kids as her own, which is why she’s in St. Paul. The governor owes Peggy and other legislators an apology. I expect more from the governor in his words and his ability to compromise for a better Minnesota, as should you.

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Spencer Krier