Bakk: Approach the good news of the surplus with restraint
St. Paul, Minn.—Senate DFL Caucus Leader Tom Bakk (DFL-Cook) reacted to the February Budget Forecast, released today. The surplus has increased by $200 million since November’s Budget projections, leaving $1.6 billion available for tax cuts and spending this biennium.
“I urge Republican leaders to exercise caution as they develop spending and tax relief proposals. The forecast shows growth, which is good news for our state. As legislators consider a budget, we must be thoughtful in our spending and tax proposals so we do not undermine the stability of our fiscal outlook,” Bakk said.
“There are big numbers and expensive proposals being considered by the Republican legislators. When you add up the costs of a reinsurance pool, a tax cut bill larger than Gov. Dayton’s, general fund dollars for transportation, cash-necessary for infrastructure projects, and needed education investments—the budget surplus, and then some, is spent pretty quickly. It would be extremely reckless for Legislators to drain the Rainy-Day fund for short-term spending and jeopardize the state’s budget stability, rather than curb their spending appetite,” Bakk said.
“Senate DFLers will continue to keep an eye to the future health and growth of our economy. We will continue to support working families and Minnesota’s quality of life through smart investments and reforms like the MinnesotaCare Buy In, paid family leave, thoughtful education investments, a sensible tax bill, and a robust Jobs Bill,” Bakk said.