ST. PAUL—State Rep. Joyce Peppin (R-Rogers) today noted the third consecutive budget surplus – this one in the amount of $1.3 billion -- further evidence that the fiscally conservative management of the past several years is working to strengthen Minnesota’s economy.
“Minnesota’s 2012 surplus is good news and, under state law, will go to pay back the school shift dollars used in the current budget,” Peppin said.
For the 2014-15 budget cycle, the forecast also indicated projected deficit of $1.1 billion which, while challenging, is a far cry from the $6.2 billion deficit which the Republican-controlled legislature faced in late 2010. Peppin noted that while the state appears to be on the right track, the newly-elected DFL Legislature, paired with DFL Governor Mark Dayton should proceed with caution as they take control in January.
“There are multiple factors at play that could pull the state far back into the red if we do not proceed cautiously,” Peppin explained. “This includes increasingly costly Obamacare mandates, multi-million dollar Vikings stadium payments, and fiscal cliff uncertainty at the federal level, which could mean the unfortunate possibility of a national recession.”
Peppin continued: “Tax collections for the next two years are forecast to increase $1.7 billion, a five percent increase, which should be more than enough to meet the state's spending needs. If, however, as DFL leaders state, they want to raise taxes across the board and increase spending, Minnesota’s economic growth could plummet, bringing our state back into severe recession.”
The 2013 legislative session convenes on Tuesday, January 8.
“Please feel free to contact me at any time about the budget forecast or any other matter of legislative importance to you. I look forward to hearing from constituents and welcome your calls, email, and visits to the Capitol this session,” Peppin said.
Representative Peppin encourages constituents to contact her with questions or opinions on any state legislative issue. She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 651.296.7806. Mail should be sent to Rep. Joyce Peppin, 503 State Office Building, 100 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155.