Huge surplus does not deter Walz from raising taxes

Gov. Tim Walz did the most amazing thing today as he released his 2024-25 state budget: he kept a straight face proposing tax increases on top of the $17.6 billion budget surplus. It will take weeks to sort out all the moving parts of this massive proposal, but here a few quick takes.

  • Walz proposed a new wealth tax on capital gains that he predicts will bring in over $600 million over two years because he thinks it’s unfair that people have that much wealth.
  • Walz proposed a new 1/8th cent sales tax for the seven-county metropolitan area to pay for his failed management of the Southwest Light Rail boondoggle.
  • Walz proposed rebate checks for Minnesotans, but only if you make less than $75,000 per year.
  • Walz proposed raising vehicle license tab fees by increasing the depreciation schedule. So if you drive a nice car, you will pay more in taxes.
  • Walz proposed a new paid family leave bill using over $600 million of the surplus, but the benefits to employees will phase out as their income gets higher.
  • Walz proposed eliminating the state tax on social security income, but not if you make too much money, because, you know, fairness.
  • Walz proposed total spending for the next two years of $65.2 billion, almost double what it was just 12 years ago.

This budget proposal from Gov. Walz is another massive increase in state spending, to be sure. But it’s not just about the money. With every new state employee, every new program, every new tax, every new give-away, the state takes a little more of our freedom. The only question is, which will run out first?

Click here to dive into the detailed budget docs.