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Paynesville Press - Oct. 27, 2010

Minnesota House District 18B
Dean Urdahl

Dean Urdahl

Dean Urdahl (R-Grove City), 61, is a retired teacher who has served in the Minnesota House since 2002.

Why are you interested in serving in the Legislature? I want to continue to be a strong, independent voice for rural Minnesota. I want to be part of growing jobs in the private sector and ensuring that our education system remains strong.

What, if any, state revenue increases could you support? Revenue can be generated by creating a more favorable business climate in Minnesota. A reduction in the business tax and reducing mandates, regulatory, and permitting requirements must be done. The result will be more ease in business growth and thus more job creation. More jobs means more income, sales, and business taxes paid to the state.

Describe an out-of-the-box solution to help the budget. I am co-chair of the House Redesign Caucus. We need to seriously look at new ways of doing things in state government. We must become more efficient and effective. We have duplication; at least five bodies deal with water is one example. All levels of government must examine how they operate. There are many alternatives that would result in significant cost savings to the state of Minnesota.

If you were king (or queen), how would you balance the state budget? Uniform spending cuts would have to be part of it. I would institute cost-saving redesign provisions and create a better business climate through lower taxes and cuts in regulations and permits. Our future viability depends upon smaller government and keeping taxes and spending under control. We cannot tax and spend ourselves out of a recession.

With the Vikings lease expiring after 2011, what state role do you support in building a new Vikings stadium? The Vikings are important to Minnesota. I would support building a stadium if the debt service of the bond is paid for by those who use and/or benefit from the stadium. There can be no general fund dollars involved. I think there is a way to get this done without using any general fund monies.

What can an individual legislator do to bring about bipartisan compromise in St. Paul? I am co-chair of the bipartisan redesign caucus and serve on a bipartisan small business caucus as well. Legislation was developed and passed by each. When we join together in a spirit of cooperation, good things happen. I have had great success in passing legislation. This would not be possible if I didn't work well with both parties.

What should the legislature do to minimize abortions? Frankly, it should be parents who take the most active role in minimizing abortions. The legislature can urge information, alternatives, abstinance, a Women's Right to Know, etc., but parents and churches need to be proactive as well. Most of the burden should fall on them.

What would be your personal priorities if elected? I would desire to: 1. Redesign government to be more efficient. 2. Maintain high-quality education. 3. Create a climate more favorable to private sector job growth.

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