The House voted 69 to 65 in favor of a tax bill that included Mayo's Destination Medical Center proposal. The bill has one final stop in the Senate before heading to DFL Gov. Mark Dayton for his signature.
An emotional Rep. Tina Liebling told fellow lawmakers this bill has the potential to create 35,000 to 40,000 jobs over the next 20 years.
"This is a tax bill that has more jobs in it than any bill I've seen in the House in the nine years I've been here," she said.
She went on to say the bill's passage marks "an absolutely pivotal moment for the state, the city of Rochester (and) for Mayo Clinic."
The bill's passage comes as time is running out for the DFL-led Legislature to pass its $38 billion budget before Monday's midnight deadline. The two largest budget bills — K-12 Education and Health and Human Services — cleared both the House and Senate. Another key piece of the budget is the tax bill, which raises $2.1 billion in new revenue to plug a $627 million budget shortfall and pay for new spending.
The tax bills includes a new 4th-tier property tax of 9.875 percent on married couples with adjusted gross incomes of $250,000 or more. It raises taxes on cigarettes by $1.60 a pack and includes business-to-business taxes on warehousing, electronic repairs and telecommunications. Those tax increases led Republicans who back Mayo's Destination Medical Center project to vote against the bill.
“While gas prices rise over $4 a gallon, the Democrats just can’t get enough, and they have to have more and more and more,” said Rep. Greg David, R-Preston.