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$1 billion surplus projected for Minnesota’s 2016-17 budget

Minnesota House of Representatives Public Information Services
The surplus will set up the debate next session, when lawmakers have to come to an agreement on a budget plan.

An improving Minnesota economy means lawmakers will have a $1 billion surplus available when they set the next two-year budget.

Revenues for the 2015 fiscal year are now $556 million above earlier projections, Minnesota budget officials said Thursday. On top of that, revenues for fiscal years 2016 and 2017 combined are expected to be $41.880 billion, or a 6.4 percent increase over the current two-year budgeting period. State law requires that $183 million must go directly to the state’s budget reserve, leaving a total $1.037 billion surplus for the 2016-2017 budget.

Minnesota’s unemployment rate dropped down to 3.9 percent in October, the lowest it’s been in eight years.

The surplus will set up the debate next session, when lawmakers have to come to an agreement on a budget plan. DFL Gov. Mark Dayton has said he plans to release his 2016-2017 budget on Jan. 27. Legislators wait to craft their budget plans until after the February budget forecast. Republicans will control the state House when the 2015 session starts on Jan. 6, while Democrats are still in power in the state Senate.

A complete budget report will be released at 11 a.m. Dayton and legislative leaders will respond to the new numbers starting at 1 p.m.

Comments (12)

  1. Submitted by Eric Ferguson on 12/04/2014 - 11:29 am.

    Glad they lost

    Lousy DFL mismanagement. We gave them control, and all we got is budget surpluses and low unemployment. What next, rebuilt infrastructure and rebuilt trust funds? Who wants that?

    • Submitted by Joe Smithers on 12/04/2014 - 03:22 pm.

      Who says it was DFL management or that the ones that lost the election had anything to do with the surplus? Was only the DFL in office? Last time I checked there were some people from another party in office as well.

      • Submitted by John Appelen on 12/04/2014 - 10:33 pm.


        I always find it funny when the Democrats take the credit when they only had complete control for ~18 months. (ie started passing things in ~April2013) And many of their changes were not even effective until much later. And some changes they cancelled before they even went into effect.

        Then to claim great growth while spending a huge sum of borrowed money that citizens will need to pay back. (ie Vikings Stadium, Bonding Bill) I bet we could reduce the unemployment rate even further if they approved more debt and spending.

        I am happy the Republicans will be there to ensure some of those excess tax dollars find there way back to the pockets of us who paid them. This Spring the DFL seemed to sprinkle those surplus dollars across the constituencies that voted for them. I mean they brought some aspects of MN tax code in line with the federal, however they avoided addressing the marriage penalty… I wonder what that means.

  2. Submitted by Pavel Yankovic on 12/04/2014 - 12:24 pm.

    One billion…

    dollar budget surplus equals one billion dollars in overtaxation. Give it back to the taxpayers who paid it. Shame on the state of Minnesota for pulling this stunt.

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