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Tuesday, December 7, 2021

St. Paul – Today, the Minnesota Department of Management and Budget announced that Minnesota has a projected state budget surplus of $7.7 billion for the 2022-23 fiscal years: the largest budget surplus in the history of the state. This represents roughly $2,619 for every income taxpayer in Minnesota, or $3,463 for every family in Minnesota, or $1,365 for every man, woman, and child in Minnesota. At a record pace, Minnesota is taking in far more money than it is spending. The members of the New House Republican Caucus offered their reaction. 

“The monster of Minnesota government keeps getting bigger and bigger at the expense of hardworking taxpayers,” said Rep. Steve Drazkowski (R-Mazeppa). “We need to give all $7.7 billion back to the people immediately. Let’s be clear, the government did not create this surplus, the people did. After two of the most financially challenging years on record, we need to gut taxes for the citizens of Minnesota. No more wasteful spending, no more failing programs. Just give it back.”

For context, the previous economic forecast in February of 2021 projected a $1.6 billion surplus for the 2022-23 fiscal years. This new projected surplus is an increase of $6.1 billion. 

“Our top priority is to help Minnesotans thrive. This surplus gives us multiple opportunities to make this happen,” said Rep. Jeremy Munson (R-Lake Crystal). “First, we must totally eliminate Minnesota’s tax on Social Security. Minnesota should be ashamed that such a tax even exists. Furthermore, we must cut sales tax and income tax. However, this massive surplus also allows us to give money back to taxpayers directly. My ‘Give it Back’ bill gives $2,000 to every taxpayer in the state. It’s the people’s money in the first place. We are clearly overtaxed. It’s time to give the money back.”

A portion of the projected surplus is required by statute to go to Minnesota’s budget reserve. This surplus would bring that reserve account to $2.6 billion. 

“Governor Tim Walz and his administration are already claiming credit for this surplus, but they are wrong,” said Rep. Cal Bahr (R-East Bethel). “The sole credit belongs to the Minnesotans who work hard and pay their taxes. In spite of Governor Walz’s and President Biden’s disastrous handling of our economy, Minnesotans are still doing their part. Governor Walz should take this surplus as an opportunity to stop abusing Minnesotans and join us in slashing taxes.”

Rep. Tim Miller (R-Prinsburg) concluded, “This surplus clearly demonstrates that we should not be borrowing any money for bonding projects, period. There is no reason for Minnesota to put itself into debt when we have a projected surplus of $7.7 billion. We do not need big-spending politicians to mismanage our finances.”

Rep. Steve Drazkowski (Republican-Mazeppa), Rep. Tim Miller (Republican-Prinsburg), Rep. Cal Bahr (Republican-East Bethel), and Rep. Jeremy Munson (Republican-Lake Crystal) are members of the New House Republican Caucus.