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Associated Press, Published January 14 2011

Dayton opts for paycheck as Minnesota governor

ST. PAUL – Minnesota won’t be getting free service from its new governor, the same politician who passed on a paycheck as a U.S. senator.

Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton intends to accept the position’s $120,303 per year salary.

Dayton spokeswoman Katie Tinucci said Thursday the governor decided to take a salary “out of financial necessity.”

As a U.S. senator for six years, Dayton donated his salary to a senior citizens group that arranged bus trips to Canada for people seeking cheaper medication.

Dayton comes from a family that founded the Dayton’s department store chain. He has spent millions of dollars on bids for political office, including at least $3.3 million during the recent campaign.

Dayton released tax forms last summer showing he sold pieces of fine art to help finance his campaign.