On May 5, the Minnesota Management and Budget Office released new revenue projections, and the news was not good.
In February, Minnesota was looking at a roughly $1.5 billion surplus. But with Governor Walz' executive orders keeping people at home and "non-essential" businesses closed, Minnesota now faces a $2.426 billion budget deficit.
Looking ahead, it's clear that the governor and legislature must make some budget adjustments before session ends on May 18. If families and shuttered businesses are being forced to live with less, then state government should as well.
And let's not forget, if we put people back to work, Minnesota can begin to crawl out of this mess. The forecast showed that sales tax collections are down $1.3 billion, and individual income tax collections are down $1.65 billion. With more people earning a paycheck and spending their money on goods and services, collections will rise.
GOVERNOR ALLOWS SOME ELECTIVE SURGERIES
Some residents had wondered whether Pine County even has testing for COVID-19. It does. Other residents have wondered when they will be able to see their doctors again. This week Governor Walz issued an executive order that lifts some restrictions on doctors, dentists, and veterinarians to perform some elective surgeries and procedures. This is a small step forward, and will help some residents manage their healthcare-related issues. But if you were thinking of going in to your dentist to get your teeth cleaned, be warned that procedures like that remain unavailable due to the Governor's executive orders.
HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY AND FISHING OPENER!
I'd like to take a moment to wish all of the moms out there a "Happy Mother's Day" and hope you are able to honor your mother this weekend. It's also the fishing opener this weekend, and while the weather is expected to be cooler I'm hopeful you will be able to take part in this unofficial state holiday and spend some time on one of our 10,000 lakes!