ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — Some good news for Minnesota: There’s an unexpected budget surplus.
State finance officials announced Wednesday Minnesota has a $329 million surplus, just a few months after predicting a possible deficit.
There was a lot of uncertainty just a few months ago before the holidays, and Minnesota was bracing for spending cuts from Washington. Now, the state’s books are back in black.
Finance officials explained on Wednesday a lot has changed since then.
Congress passed a corporate tax cut and funded a huge children’s health insurance program. And the economy is picking up.
Even so, two different views on Wednesday: Democratic Governor Mark Dayton worried the state will slip back in recession, while Republican leaders are crediting GOP tax cuts for the turnaround.
“We did tax relief at the state level, and the federal government did relief at the federal level. So Republicans put money back into the pockets of Minnesotans, and the state has benefited from that. So it’s a win-win,” House Speaker Kurt Daudt said.
“They are projecting that the real GDP and consumer spending are going to drop off in 2021. So I’m not setting the stage for another fiscal cliff,” Gov. Dayton said.
Wednesday’s caution could slow down some very big ideas at the Capitol. Including: That includes school security enhancements, which could cost millions of dollars. Also, stopping tax hikes on the way for thousands of Minnesotans because of the Trump tax bill.