Senate Report: Time to give back Minnesota’s historic surplus to taxpayers

Published 8:45 pm Friday, March 3, 2023

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Senate Report by Gene Dornink

Friends and neighbors,

Gene Dornink

The cost of everyday essentials like groceries, energy bills and transportation continue to skyrocket. I have heard from many constituents that they need immediate financial relief. Yet two months into the legislative session, the Democratic majority has made no meaningful effort to provide tax relief for Minnesotans. Quite to the contrary, Democrats passed a bill that makes it easier to not return the surplus to taxpayers.

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Under SF 46, Minnesota’s Department of Management and Budget (MMB) is now required to include inflation in its budget forecasting measures for all statutory appropriations. The new law will cause spending to automatically increase — unless, contrary to past practice, legislators vote to reduce it. This will also only increase inflationary pressures on Minnesotans and cause the state budget to remain skyrocketing on autopilot.

When MMB recently released its February revenue forecast, the impact of the Democrats’ law to bake inflation into the automatic budget became a reality. The report shows the surplus holding steady at $17.5 billion, with inflation accounting for $1.4 billion going back into state spending automatically. That means, that with inflation factored in, our state is looking at a surplus of nearly $19 billion.

Minnesota remains one of the most severely taxed states in the nation, and I believe that a valuable way to use the historic surplus would be by changing our tax narrative with permanent, meaningful tax relief. I have heard from families and small businesses alike that still feel the economic fallout from these last few years.

Instead of providing relief, Democrats are looking for new ways to spend your hard-earned money and have even gone as far as proposing tax and fee increases.

In a time of unprecedented surplus such as this, there is no need to ask more of Minnesota taxpayers. I will continue to fight to return the money to hardworking Minnesotans and push back against the Democrats’ big government spending. It’s long past time to give Minnesota’s historic surplus back to the people who created it: the taxpayers.

Contact me

As always, please do not hesitate to contact me. I want to hear your thoughts and your priorities for this legislative session! Feel free to email me at or give me a call at 651-296-5240.

Gene Dornink, R-Brownsdale, is the District 23 senator.