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Veto of statewide health insurance wastes opportunity to save millions for schools

Wed, May 12th, 2010
Posted in State of Minnesota

ST. PAUL, Minn., May 11, 2010 - Education Minnesota President Tom Dooher released the following statement today regarding the veto of a statewide health insurance bill for school employees.

"Gov. Pawlenty's veto of the statewide health insurance bill for school employees wastes a golden opportunity to save our schools millions of dollars that they could be using to help improve the education of our children.

"The governor's own experts at the Minnesota Management and Budget office estimate that putting this bill into law would save our schools $190 million in just the first 3½ years, with the savings continuing to grow into the future.

"The governor openly admits he would sign the bill if Education Minnesota, the teachers union, would only submit to his package of education 'reforms.' That is a remarkable admission.

"He's saying that even during the worst economic times any of us can remember, he would block an innovative approach to health insurance that would put millions of dollars into our classrooms.

"This bill stands on its own as good public policy. It saves money, puts those dollars into our classrooms and improves access to health insurance for school employees. Good public policy should not be a hostage to politics.

"Our state is in a fiscal crisis. Instead of grasping this innovative, responsible lifeline, the governor clings to his own political ideology. Our public schools and the children who attend them deserve better."

About Education Minnesota

Education Minnesota represents 70,000 professionals working together for excellence in education for all students. Education Minnesota's members include teachers and educational support professionals in Minnesota's public school districts, faculty members at Minnesota's community and technical colleges and University of Minnesota campuses in Duluth and Crookston, retired educators and student teachers. Education Minnesota is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, National Education Association and AFL-CIO. More information about Education Minnesota is available at

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