State Auditor Julie Blaha held a press conference this week to discuss the state of main street, giving an executive summary of state and local budgets and how they interact with each other. Local governments on average have held revenue and expenditures steady for the last 20 years, but there are several issues that have been delayed and must now be acted upon. To support continued stability in local government finances, the auditor’s office has determined five key ideals that decision makers should keep in mind centered around the importance of local control, intergovernmental partnerships, and the role of state aid in minimizing more regressive forms of local taxation.
To develop these recommendations, the auditor held six listening sessions across Minnesota to garner the feedback of local elected officials and local governments’ financial staff on the trends the office had found over the last 20 years. This work will ensure the real stories of Minnesota communities are reflected in the data the auditor’s office has worked to assemble, which will in turn help legislators make decisions around partnering with local governments across the state. Senate DFLers know that local government has a direct, daily impact on Minnesotans’ lives, and will work hard this session to ensure that local government is supported.