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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Cheryl Youakim (DFL)

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RELEASE: Minnesota Budget Surplus Grows to $1.87 billion

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Budget surplus is opportunity to ensure ordinary Minnesotans aren’t left behind

St. Paul, Minnesota — Today the Office of Minnesota Management and Budget announced a state budget surplus of $1.87 billion for fiscal years 2016-17. After $665 million is put into state reserve accounts, as required by law, that number shrinks to $1.2 billion. State Rep. Cheryl Youakim said that the forecast is good news, but that many ordinary Minnesotans haven’t felt the economic recovery.

“The news today about our growing budget surplus confirms what we’ve been seeing– that our economy continues to grow and recover, but there is still considerable work to do in terms of sharing that prosperity with everyone in the community,” said Rep. Cheryl Youakim (DFL – Hopkins). “This surplus gives us the chance to raise incomes and opportunity for hard working families, students, and seniors– not just the wealthy few.”

The forecast revealed that Minnesota’s economy continues to strengthen modestly, even as surveys show confidence in economic outlook weakening. Minnesota’s unemployment rate is down to 3.7 percent, and Rep. Youakim said her main focus in 2016 will be priorities to expand incomes and grow economic opportunity for middle class families.

“The forecast highlights the urgency required to help Minnesota families who have been left behind in this recovery,” said Rep. Youakim. “That means using this surplus to invest in job creation, education, and property tax relief so middle-class families can establish long-term prosperity. We also need to finish the job of funding transportation infrastructure priorities that impact every family and business in our state, and I think this positive news will help us get there.”

The next economic forecast will be in late February 2016. The 2016 Legislative Session begins on March 8th. Rep. Youakim said the major focus of the next session will be to pass a robust bonding bill to create jobs and to help local communities stop property tax increases on homeowners, renters and small businesses.

Rep. Youakim encourages community members to contact her on any legislative issue. She can be reached by email at or phone at 651-296-9889.