Minnesota braces for sequester cuts

7:26 AM, Feb 26, 2013   |    comments
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 PDF Document: Minnesota Sequester

MINNEAPOLIS - The White House is taking the sequester fight local as they push for a compromise to avoid automatic spending cuts set to take effect on Friday.

They've released a list of what impact the cuts will have on Minnesota.

Some examples:

  • $7 million will be cut from primary and secondary schools putting 100 teacher and aid jobs at risk.
  • $9.2 million in funding will be cut from education programs for students with disabilities, putting an additional 110 teaching jobs at risk.
  • Head Start programs would be eliminated for about 700 Minnesota children.
  • $3 million would be cut in environmental funding for clean air and clean water.
  • $1.2 million would be cut from grants for treating substance abuse.
  • $845,000 would be cut from programs providing free meals for seniors.

"These sequesters will hurt. They will cause pain. They will cause layoffs. They will increase unemployment and they will literally shrink the gross domestic product of our state," says Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison.

Republican Rep. John Kline has seen estimates that 4,000 Minnesota jobs are directly and indirectly at risk.

"The cuts are mindless cuts. Republicans and Democrats would like to have an alternative," says Kline.

That's easier said than done.

With Congress unable to agree on anything, Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak places the blame squarely on them.

"This crisis is about as real as Manti Te'o's girlfriend. It's another fake crisis created by a congress that can't get its work done," says Rybak.

Right now there is no outline for a deal.

If there is any consolation, Minnesota receives less money per capita from the federal government than almost every other state, so the state will feel the impact of the sequester less than most.

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