MORGAN, Minn.-- The race for governor is on!

Candidates for the top executive spot gathered at Farmfest on Wednesday, and addressed issues regarding agriculture and more.

It might be the biggest attraction in state politics throughout the country. The show made its way to just outside of Morgan for the Minnesota Governor Race.

The panel touched on industry-wide issues, including how they would reduce property taxes on farmlands, while keeping support for rural schools and communities. 

Candidate and Representaitive Tim Walz (DFL) referred to the issue, using an example of school buildings. 

"We started seeing, forcing issues, where we have rural school districts that have to have bonding referendums to fix roofs," said Walz.

"We see suburban school district building dome stadiums with turf fields, well what we end up with is not just inequitable education, we have an inequitable 'warp force' across the state.

 Former state governor and candidate Tim Pawlenty (R) brought up the use of levees. 

"We need to keep the house garage in one acre, we need to extend that if we can to capital levees as well," said Pawlenty. 

"At the very least we need to make sure Ag to school credit continues ongoing into the future, but more broadly than that, we need to reduce input costs for farmers, and lots of other categories."

The deepened divide between the urban and rural parts of the state, meant that even those for whom farming was not a first language, having a grasp of the issue was entirely necessary.

State Attorney General and Candidate Lori Swanson (DFL) said the community should support local government aid. 

"Smaller communities have a tougher time supporting infrastructures for fire departments and police departments," said Swanson.

"Local government aid spending is a lot less than it used to be, as a general percent of the fund budget, it used to be a little over 4 percent of the fund budget in the early 70s, now it's just a little bit over 2 percent."

GOP -Endorsed Candidate Jeff Johnson (R) said he has always been a strong supporter of a property tax cap.  

"Not what we've done in the past, but simply says that your property taxes cannot increase over a certain percent on your homestead in any given year," said Johnson. 

DFL-Endorsed Candidate Erin Murphy said property taxes would increase if actions were not taken. 

"When we say we're gonna cut taxes, and not, and we're not gonna fill that spot," said Murphy.

"It means that we're gonna shift the burden of the state budget to local units of government, and your property taxes are gonna go up."

The primary on August 14 will determine who ends up on the ballot in November, where finalists will be one step closer to being named governor.

-- KEYC News 12