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Minnesota Budget Outlook and Trends

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The state's budget is influenced by economic conditions, and in return, state budget and policy decisions should be informed by how Minnesotans are being effected by the economy. We provide analysis of the state's economic and budget forecasts as well as research on long-term budget trends.

Research

September 2002

Trends in Minnesota government spending

Between 1987 and 1997 (the period of time examined by this report), Minnesota trailed the national average in terms of growth in government spending. However, state and local government investments in public services and infrastructure contributed positively to Minnesota’s economic health and quality of life. 

January 2002

Wasted opportunities: How we used our surpluses 1997-2001

Between 1997 and 2001, Minnesota policymakers had the opportunity to allocate budget surpluses of over $13 billion. This joint analysis with the Children's Defense Fund-Minnesota finds that over half of those surpluses went to temporary tax rebates and permanent tax cuts. Budget-balancing decisions should be informed by how surpluses were used in the past and how certain programs were underfunded even in times of plenty.

Budget Outlook and Trends Blog Posts

December 18, 2023

Minnesota’s November Budget Forecast is a mixed bag

The state budget forecast predicts an $82 million positive balance at the end of the four years covered by the forecast. One-time surplus dollars generated in the past continue to be an important funding source throughout the four-year budget window. In this blog, we share our high-level takes on the forecast, which gives policymakers, advocates, and the public an initial look at the state’s budget landscape as we get closer to the upcoming legislative session.

November 27, 2023

Recent information points to stronger state budget picture

Recent budget reports suggest that Minnesota will likely project a larger budget surplus when the next legislative session kicks off. This in part reflects the fact that the national economy has performed more strongly this year than was previously anticipated. In October, Minnesota Management and Budget determined that the prior FY 2022-23 final general fund balance was $820 million higher than end-of-session estimates.

July 18, 2023

July economic update shows state revenues on track, mixed national economic picture

The State of Minnesota ended the most recent fiscal year on a positive revenue note, but the latest update shows the relatively strong national economic outlook is expected to weaken in coming years.

April 12, 2023

Latest economic report shows state revenues on track with projected large surpluses

Both the state of Minnesota’s revenues and the national economic forecast are slightly improved compared to the February...