Minnesota posts massive $7.7 billion budget surplus, kicking off debate over tax cuts, new programs

The news also prompted immediate debate about how lawmakers should spend it in the upcoming legislative session.

Minnesota Management and Budget officials said that despite the impact of the pandemic in Minnesota, the state reported higher than expected growth in personal income, consumer spending and corporate profits so far this year. And economic predictions suggested that the rosy conditions could continue into next year.

At the same time, the state spent less of its $52 billion two-year budget than experts expected to on education since enrollments shrunk compared to expectations and on health and human services programs. The state has learned to manage as the pandemic continues to bear down on the state, they said. And while economic success has varied across sectors and different income levels, the overall economy has overperformed in the face of uncertainty.

“All this good news might lead some to think that this wild ride is over, but as our hospitals remind us, COVID-19 is still here and still dangerous; however, our economy is learning how to adapt,” Minnesota Management and Budget Commissioner Jim Schowalter said.

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