Governor Walz, Lieutenant Governor Flanagan Release Revised Budget to Move Minnesota Forward
Accounting for recent economic forecast, revised budget increases Walz Checks to $500, $1,000
ST. PAUL, MN (STL.News) Governor Tim Walz and Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan released their revised supplemental budget today. The revised Walz-Flanagan Budget to Move Minnesota Forward accounts for the recent economic forecast released last month by Minnesota Management and Budget (MMB), while continuing to make investments to expand economic opportunity, protect Minnesotans’ health and safety, and support children and families. The revised series of supplemental budget proposals includes delivering up to $1,000 in direct payments to Minnesota families through Walz Checks.
“Thanks to the hard work of Minnesotans across the state, Minnesota’s economy is strong,” said Governor Walz. “With a historic surplus, we have an opportunity to provide direct relief to Minnesotans and invest in the future of our state. Amid global economic uncertainty, direct payments are one of the best ways to make it easier for Minnesotans to pay their bills. Right now, we have the resources to send $1,000 to Minnesota families.”
“Our revised budget continues to put children, families, and workers at the forefront by increasing direct payments to Minnesotans, expanding child nutrition programs, investing in emergency shelter services, and more,” said Lieutenant Governor Flanagan. “ We want Minnesota to be the best state to raise a family. With our Budget to Move Minnesota Forward – including funding for schools, workers, and families – we can make that happen for Minnesotans.”
MMB released an economic forecast in February showing that Minnesota’s state budget surplus is projected to be a historic $9.25 billion for fiscal year 2022-23. Accounting for the recent economic forecast, the revised Walz-Flanagan Budget to Move Minnesota Forward now proposes investments to:
Expand Economic Opportunity
Provide Even More Direct Support to Minnesotans and Small Businesses
Governor Walz and Lieutenant Governor Flanagan’s revised budget now proposes distributing Walz Checks of up to $1,000 directly to Minnesotans. Single tax filers would receive a payment of $500 while a married couple would receive a payment of $1,000. More than 2.7 million Minnesota households would receive a Walz Check under this proposal.
The Governor and Lieutenant Governor also propose investing $73 million to respond to the inflationary pressures faced by the retirees on Minnesota public pension plans and $20 million in the Main Street Economic Revitalization program to continue providing funding to help communities rebuild and recover. The Governor and Lieutenant Governor also recommend an additional investment in the Small Business Partnership grants to allow nonprofits to provide business development services to even more Black, Indigenous, and People of Color small business owners and entrepreneurs throughout the state.
Protect Minnesotans’ Health and Safety
Reduce Crime and Increase Community Trust
The Governor and Lieutenant Governor propose funding to purchase a new helicopter for the Minnesota State Patrol. Governor Walz and Lieutenant Governor Flanagan also recommend a $9 million investment in sophisticated cybersecurity defense layers to protect the systems Minnesotans rely on and better guard against increasing and evolving cyber threats stemming from geopolitical events or other malicious actors.
Expand Access to High-Quality and Affordable Health Care
The Governor and Lieutenant Governor recommend $23.5 million as an ongoing investment in the state, local, and tribal governmental public health system to make our public health system work better for all communities, including having the skills and resources needed to prevent and control infectious diseases, address environmental health threats, improve the health of communities, and improve access to health care services. The Governor and Lieutenant Governor propose continuing the state’s successful program to train eligible students to become certified nursing assistants (CNAs), which is currently being funded with federal American Rescue Plan dollars. The Walz-Flanagan budget also invests $215 million over three years to recruit and retain frontline workers who provide essential care for people with disabilities, older adults, people with behavioral health needs, and people experiencing homelessness.
Ensure Every Minnesotan Has a Place to Call Home
The Walz-Flanagan budget proposal will reverse decades of underinvestment in emergency shelter services by providing $20 million in additional funding – for an overall investment of $115 million over three years – for badly needed resources to emergency shelter services statewide. New shelter beds, safety improvements, and enhanced services and staffing levels will lead to better outcomes for Minnesotans who experience homelessness.
Support Children and Families
Provide students, families, and schools the resources they need
The Governor and Lieutenant Governor recommend funding to expand data-informed outreach and direct support to increase awareness and participation in child nutrition programs with a focus on cultural and geographic communities that lack access. This proposal builds upon the Governor and Lieutenant Governor’s universal school meals proposal and aims to maximize federal funding available to schools by working to increase eligible schools’ participation in the federal Community Eligibility Provision. Increased capacity would focus on high-impact communities, with an ultimate goal of reducing child hunger.
These investments are in addition to the Walz-Flanagan proposal to expand access to child care and pre-K, invest an additional 2% on the general education formula, and provide $15 million for education support professionals.