Skip to main content Skip to office menu Skip to footer
Capital IconMinnesota Legislature

Legislative News and Views - Rep. Matt Bliss (R)

Back to profile

Legislative update

Friday, February 26, 2021

Dear Neighbor, 

Minnesota Management & Budget issued a report today which projects a $1.6 billion state surplus for the 2022-23 biennium. This is a sharp turnaround from the $1.3 billion shortfall projected in December for the same period.  

It is good to see our state’s economy has not only stabilized but has improved our bottom line by leaps and bounds after concerns for a multi-billion-dollar shortfall arose in recent months 

That said, people have been struggling to stay afloat and others haven’t been that fortunate. It is a bad idea for the state to raise taxes on the same people the governor’s restrictions put out of work or caused to lose income. I hope we can put the governor’s plan to raise our taxes by $1.7 billion – or any tax increases, for that matter – to rest this session.  

Our focus should be on safely re-opening Minnesota to help families and businesses get back on track as our state’s economy rises. House Republicans are taking that approach and continue working to protect taxpayers.

As for the forecast itself, MMB said the turnaround is due, in large part, to an improved U.S. economic outlook that is bolstered by large federal actions that have emerged since November and were not incorporated in earlier projections. The projected surplus also is related to a higher revenue forecast, lower state spending, and an increased surplus for the current fiscal year.  

Overall, it is good to see our state’s bottom line did not collapse as feared several months ago. 

SAFE Account 

House Republicans remain committed to ensuring law enforcement has the resources needed to keep Minnesotans safe. Unfortunately, plans to create a $35 million public safety emergency fund in order to provide law enforcement agencies with additional resources and help avoid a repeat of last summer’s Minneapolis riots have stalled. 

The House majority twice tried and failed to get their SAFE Account bill off the floor (HF445) and now must decide whether it wants to pursue a bipartisan approach or continue allowing extreme, fringe views to hold up this bill.  

The most recent attempt failed by a 62-72 vote, the first time in years that a priority bill for the majority and/or governor has failed on the House floor. A major source of the holdup is the majority insists on including controversial policy provisions that caused the bill to lose support of Minnesota's top three law enforcement groups, while also blocking Republican attempts to offer a meaningful compromise that could have earned significant bipartisan support.  

The Star Tribune has taken note and recently published an editorial from its staff entitled: State House Republicans have the right idea on police security funding. The governor himself said on WCCO radio this week that he would sign the House Republican SAFE Account proposal if it reached his desk. Earlier in that same interview, he described it as a “workable solution.”  

Ideally, this new “SAFE Account” would be in place before the Derek Chauvin trial begins soon. Stay tuned and, until next time, have a good weekend



Recent News for Rep. Matt Bliss