Friday, August 20, 2010

Gubernatorial Debate- Sept. 15 in Minneapolis

Gubernatorial Debate Hosted By BringMeTheNews and the Citizens League

Wednesday, September 15th
Doors open at 6:30 | Program 7:00 - 8:00pm
Pantages Theater
710 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis

BringMeTheNews, the online and broadcast aggregation news network, will host a live, interactive debate between Minnesota gubernatorial candidates Mark Dayton (DFL), Tom Emmer (GOP), and Tom Horner (Independence) in partnership with the Citizens League and the LEAD Project.

The program will be produced as a unique conversation-style debate where Minnesotans can participate in an interactive question and answer session through BringMeTheNews' social networks. The discussion will be moderated by former investigative journalist, TV News anchor and BringMeTheNews founder Rick Kupchella and will stream live on www.Bring.MN and rebroadcast on the CW (channel 23) the following week.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Governor, state auditor debate in Winona- Aug. 19

Coalition of Greater MN Cities To Hold Gubernatorial, State Auditor Debates

Who: Major candidates for Governor and State Auditor have been invited

What: Gubernatorial and State Auditor Debates to be held during the CGMC Summer Conference in Winona

When: Thursday, August 19th 2010

State Auditor Debate: 3:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Gubernatorial Debate: 4:00 – 5:00 p.m.

Where: Winona County Historical Society
160 Johnson Street, Winona 55987

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Higher education maintenance of effort provision included in bill

Earlier today, the U.S. Senate passed H.R. 1586, the Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization legislation, by a vote of 61-39. The bill includes an amendment by Sen. Patty Murray, D-Washington, and Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, that includes $26 billion for education jobs and Medicaid assistance to states. The bill now heads back to the House, where it is expected to pass Tuesday.

The House is currently in recess for the month of August, having adjourned July 30; however, anticipating this Senate action, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has taken the highly unusual step of recalling the House for a vote on the bill early next week.

The Murray-Harkin amendment will provide $26 billion to help states deal with their economic conditions. $10 billion is for the education jobs fund, which states can use to retain and hire K-12 teachers and other educational personnel. While the jobs fund does not extend directly to higher education, the maintenance of effort provision that states must comply with in order to receive these funds does set minimum spending levels for higher education at the FY 2009 level, or the overall percentage of the budget in FY 2010 for both higher education and K-12. For those states where state revenues in FY 2009 were below FY 2006, states must fund K-12 and higher education at either the funding level or overall percentage of the budget in FY 2006. The education jobs funding has been included in multiple spending bills, but was struck from the supplemental spending bill passed earlier by the House and Senate.

The remaining $16.1 billion is allocated to the Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP). FMAP funding for states has an enormous impact on budgets. The majority of states, including Minnesota, passed budgets for the upcoming year factoring FMAP funds into their budgets. States are counting on this funding to close budget shortfalls projected for the current fiscal year (FY2011).

To pay for the new spending, the bill would cut off an expansion of food-stamp benefits in March 2014, which were enacted in last year's stimulus package, as well as end tax breaks for some multinational corporations that are based in the United States but have operations and pay taxes abroad.

The Senate is scheduled to begin their August recess Aug. 9, and will return to Washington Monday, Sept. 13.