Woodbury Rep. Ward on Revised Budget Forecast: ‘Real Progress Towards Economic Recovery’
The latest budget forecast for Minnesota came out this week, projecting a smaller deficit than previously anticipated.
JoAnn Ward, a first-term state House representative from Woodbury, says a revised budget forecast for Minnesota is encouraging, but more work lies ahead.
The February budget forecast released this week shows a projected deficit of $627 million for fiscal years 2014-15, down from November’s projected $1.1 billion deficit.
“Minnesota is making real progress towards economic recovery and I am encouraged that the state is in a better place now than a few months ago,” Ward (DFL-Woodbury) said in a statement. “We still must tackle a large deficit, but I am confident that we will close this gap in a responsible way that sets up Minnesota for future growth and prosperity.”
Republicans, meanwhile, said that despite the improved projections, the DFL—which has a majority in both chambers and holds the governor’s office—is still proposing the same $3.7 billion tax increase lawmakers had previously put forward, according to a post from House Public Information Services writer Jonathan Mohr.
Democrats, said House Minority Leader Kurt Doudt, aren’t discussing further cuts, and are instead saying: “We can spend a little bit more here or we can spend a little bit more there.”
Ward said the state has an opportunity to stop the cycle of budget deficits the state has faced over the past decade.
“We cannot continue to have economic growth if we sacrifice our future,” she said. “We need to make wise investments to grow middle-class jobs and strengthen education to build a 21st century workforce. If we make investments today to continue to grow our economy, Minnesota will do more than just recover from the recession—we will be better off than we were before.”