There is some good news early this session for Senior Minnesota Taxpayers. Right there are bills in the House and the Senate, which propose to reduce and eventually remove Minnesota taxes on Social Security payments.
Minnesota's tax on Social Security makes us less competitive neighboring states and, pushes recipients to leave our state in search of a home where their hard earned retirement savings will go farther.
There is of course, a long list of groups that want “a break” on their taxes but seniors should be right there in the front row demanding that we get out of what Kiplinger’s Magazine says is “Retirement Hell” (4th worst state to retire in—2014).
Here is a link to more information from the non-partisan Tax Foundation in Washington DC about which states tax social security and how the taxes work. It’s a bit dated, Iowa for example had a phase in for the exemption that went into full effect last year. The proposals being offered here are phased in exemptions as well.
The bills before the legislature are as follows:
Senate Files: SF 123 (Senjem) SF 124 (Senjem) SF 254 (Ruud) SF 256 (Limmer)
House Files: HF 300 (Lohmer) HF 308 (Davids) HF 309 (Davids)
It’s a bit confusing to have all these same/similar bills introduced at once but it’s not unusual in the opening of session to have a number of legislators have the same idea and submit bills on them. What will happen next is that one or two bills will heard by the Tax Committee in both the Senate and the House and then ONE bill will probably be included in a bigger Tax bill.
The Senate HAS ALREADY SCHEDULED their bills:
Wednesday, January 28, 2015
Tax Reform Division
Chair: Sen. Ann H. Rest
Room 15 Capitol
So what can interested citizens do now?
- First, people who want to support these bills should call or write their State Representative and State senator and make them aware that they support phased reduction and end to a tax on social security , whatever bill it ends up being in. IF the legislator tells you that they are already supporting the bill it’s important to THANK them. A lot of times, our legislators don’t know what kind of support they have for the decisions they are making. It’s important to register your support and tell them you want them to support this. (If you do not know who your Representative and State senator are go here)
- Secondly, there will be opportunities to testify on the bill. You can call the Senate Tax committee to ask to be put on their list to testify at the hearing on Wednesday. The Senate Tax Reform Committee Administrator is: Brenda Shafer-Pellinen (651) 296-7593. The committee staff can give you instructions about when public testimony will be taken. To learn about when the opportunity will come up in the House you can send an email to the Taxpayers League, firstname.lastname@example.org and we will let you know as soon as we learn of developments.
- Thirdly, If you don’t want to testify but would just like to show up and show your support for this bill in the hearing, that is also very helpful. A packed room full of taxpayers, not just lobbyists certainly would capture legislators’ attention.