Minnesota’s budget and economic outlook has significantly worsened since the coronavirus pandemic. A deficit of $2.426 billion is now projected for the current biennium, which is almost a $4 billion change compared to the February forecast.

Revenues are expected to be $3.611 billion lower and spending, including appropriations enacted since February, is expected to be $391 million higher. The $2.359 billion budget reserve remains available to mitigate the budgetary impact of the crisis. Given the uncertainty about the path of the pandemic, the economic outlook will remain volatile for some time

You can read the full presentation and report here.

TakeAction Minnesota released the following statement:

“Minnesota has come through tough economic times before, including the last recession, by pulling together and requiring the wealthiest corporations and individuals to pay their fair share in taxes,” said Elianne Farhat, executive director of TakeAction Minnesota. “We can get through this and come out stronger, but the days of Republicans passing trillions of dollars in tax cuts for the richest 1% need to end. We deserve a government in Minnesota that’s working for the people, and that starts with a fair tax system.”

Minnesota AFL-CIO President Bill McCarthy issued the following statement in response to the news that Minnesota is facing a $2.4 billion budget deficit:

“As expected, COVID-19 has sent Minnesota’s state budget into deficit. While this budget deficit adds even more challenges to the current pandemic crisis, this virus has shown us once again that Minnesotans prevail by pulling together, no matter what we look like or where we live.

Pulling together means investing in one another to ensure working Minnesotans and families can make ends meet now and thrive once this crisis ends. It means investing in critical infrastructure to put tens of thousands of Minnesotans back to work, spending money in our communities. It also means asking the wealthy and big business to pay their fair share.

Thanks to wise fiscal management and past investments, this deficit is not as bad as it could have been. However, corporate special interests and their allies in the Legislature will likely use this crisis as an opportunity to enact painful cuts and slash taxes for the richest 1%. Minnesotans know better. We know that cuts to the vital services that Minnesotans depend on – especially right now – will only make this crisis worse. We know that it’s time for all of us to do our part and pull together as One Minnesota.”

The following statement is being released by the organizations listed below:

“In times of crisis, Minnesotans – no matter the color of our skin, our wealth or our ZIP code – come together and take care of each other. Whether snowstorms, tornadoes, or bridge collapses, when times are tough we’ve shown that Minnesotans are caring, compassionate and resilient. 

The budget challenges that will come from the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic are a chance for us to show that we aren’t afraid to take on the latest challenge facing our state. The choices we make now to help us weather this virus, can also set a better course for the future of our communities.

But we know that certain politicians will try to use this challenge to put forward a plan to cut programs like healthcare and schools, in order to prevent the wealthiest 1% from paying their fair share in taxes. We often hear from politicians – trying to keep the wealthiest from chipping in their fair share – about ‘family budgets’ and ‘tough decisions while sitting around the dinner table.’  But we all know that when Minnesota families face tough financial situations, they don’t decide which kid won’t get to eat, if grandma won’t get the care she needs to survive, or which person in the family won’t have a roof over their head that night. We find ways to get what we need to provide a safe, healthy and happy life to those we care about. Now it’s time for our elected leaders to do the same and showcase a government

#WhoCaresForUs as we face this crisis. 

Minnesotans know that we face challenging times, but we, as a state, are up to the challenge. We’ve taken on big fights before, and come out stronger on the other side. It’s time for the richest 1%, the most profitable corporations, and the handful of politicians that support them, to stop fueling our divisions for their own gain. Instead, we need those at the top to do what the rest of us have always done – chip in to pay their fair share so we can build a state that cares for all of us, no exceptions.”

Organizations:

  • TakeAction Minnesota
  • Move Minnesota
  • Education Minnesota
  • MN350
  • Faith in Minnesota
  • SEIU MN State Council
  • ISAIAH
  • SEIU Healthcare MN 
  • SEIU Local 26
  • Land Stewardship Action Fund
  • Land Stewardship Project 
  • Minnesota Nurses Association
  • OutFront Minnesota
  • Gender Justice 
  • 100% Campaign

AFSCME Council 5 Executive Director Julie Bleyhl has released the following statement.

“AFSCME Council 5 represents over 43,000 state, county, city, non-profit and private sector workers who provide critical services that all Minnesotans benefit from and deserve. They staff our state parks, ensure our correctional facilities are secure, keep our district courts operating, staff our group homes, hospitals, clinics and much more. Our members will continue to urge Congress to pass an additional massive state and local government funding package. We will not cut our way out of this global pandemic. Through several years of sound budgeting principles under Governors Dayton and Walz, Minnesota has built up a strong “rainy day” fund to get us through difficult times like these. Working together and investing in public services at this time of great need will get us through the many unknowns caused by COVID-19. Investing in such services has a positive return on investment, saves and transforms lives, and ensures that Minnesota remains one of the best run states in the nation. We want to thank Governor Walz for his leadership and his thoughtful and decisive actions and working with us to protect the lives of Minnesotans.”

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