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LEGISLATIVE UPDATE FROM REP. STEVE DRAZKOWSKI - DISTRICT 21-B

Friday, May 21, 2021
 

Greetings, everyone. I wanted you to know about some of the news here in St. Paul.

The Final Budget Deal

Governor Tim Walz, Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka, and House Speaker Melissa Hortman announced this week that they have reached a deal on Minnesota’s next biennial budget. The deal would spend approximately $51.2 billion throughout fiscal years 2022 and 2023. The specifics of this plan are still being worked out, but the Minnesota Legislature will likely vote on the plan in a special session next month.

For context, the agreement for the previous biennial budget, which was for fiscal years 2020 and 2021, was a roughly $48 billion budget.

The new budget agreement marks a clear increase in spending from the previous budget. However, much of the new spending came from federal money that was sent to Minnesota as a part of the American Rescue Plan. There are no new taxes in this biennial budget agreement.

This agreement was reached on Monday, May 17th which was the last day of the 2021 regular session of the Minnesota Legislature. Since we were not able to pass the budget before regular session ended, the Minnesota Legislature will convene a special session to vote on the agreement. We are required to pass a budget before the current fiscal year ends on June 30th. If we do not, then state government will shut down.

I am glad that the deal includes no new taxes. I have repeatedly said that Minnesotans are taxed too much already. Throughout the entire regular session, Democrats advocated for tax increases on individuals and businesses. Their decision to walk away from their own tax proposals is good for Minnesota’s economy and Minnesota families.

Steve Drazkowski

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