And then there were two tax commissions…

A few weeks ago, I blogged about the State Budget Trends Study Commission – a panel of economists and other experts tasked with recommending how our state budget and tax system can be less volatile and better prepared for demographic changes. That Commission was established by the legislature last session.

Now the Governor has established his own posse – the 21st Century Tax Reform Commission. According to the executive order, the Commission will give“recommendations to the Governor on reforming the state’s tax laws with the goal of making long-term improvements in the revenue system that reflect changes in business practices, demographics, and the economy that have occurred in Minnesota and in other states.” Sounds a bit similar to the Budget Trends Commission. As a tax geek it’s always nice to see elected officials take interest in the subject of tax reform.

However, the Governor’s Commission differs from the Budget Trends Commission by emphasizing how tax law affects Minnesota’s business climate. The Commission will have up to 15 members with “knowledge and expertise in how state tax systems affect business location, job creation and capital investments.”

It’s too early to evaluate the Governor’s effort, though the executive order does outline from the outset that the changes should be “revenue-neutral.” At the very least we could have simultaneous recommendations – both commissions are due to issue a report in December of this year. The Budget Bites blog will keep you updated on both Commissions, including thinking up monikers to distinguish the two commissions…

FYI: The next State Budget Trends Study Commission meeting is Tuesday, March 25th, 8:30 am – 10:30 am, Centennial Office Building, Ground Floor, Lady Slipper Room.

-Katherine Blauvelt

About Katherine Blauvelt

Katherine Blauvelt served as the Minnesota Budget Project’s policy analyst from 2007 to 2009.
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