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Published January 28, 2013, 12:43 PM

Minnesota lawmakers start examination of Dayton plan

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Republicans on Minnesota's influential House Ways and Means Committee say some of what appeared to be cuts in Gov. Mark Dayton's budget blueprint are actually reallocated spending.

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Republicans on Minnesota's influential House Ways and Means Committee say some of what appeared to be cuts in Gov. Mark Dayton's budget blueprint are actually reallocated spending.

The committee that's charged with piecing together the legislative budget met Monday for its first detailed look at Dayton's $38 billion, two-year tax and spending proposal.

GOP members were wary of major sales and income tax changes and the possible effect on the state's business climate. Several Minneapolis DFLers suggested including a liquor tax increase to accompany Dayton's proposed 94-cent-a pack hike in the state cigarette tax.

GOP Rep. Denny McNamara of Hastings noted that what initially looked like $225 million in cuts is actually both cuts and some reallocated spending within agencies, including the DNR. Dayton's budget chief, Jim Schowalter, confirmed that.

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