How The Minnesota Budget Process Works

If you're looking to make an impact on your local city budget, you should read this post first.

The Budget Cycle

The Minnesota budget operates on a two-year cycle. We're currently in this cycle:

In the middle of this budget cycle, we are going to start planning for the next budget cycle (July 1 2021 to June 30 2023). This is where we can make impact -- by drastically reducing the police budget for the next budget cycle.

Budget planning for the next cycle is going to start soon. First, all the agencies will come up with a proposed budget:

(MMB = Minnesota Management and Budget).

Then the MMB commissioner sends a budget number to the Ways and Means committee:

The MMB number is the "this is how much money you have, this is what is already spent (like pension costs)", plus the agency proposals.

This information is used as the basis for the governor's proposed budget for the next cycle. The ways and means committee does the legal work to see what can be done and what can't be done.

The governor sends his proposed budget to the Minnesota legislature:

The detailed operating budget needs to be sent by Tim Walz by Jan 26 2021 (more info).

Now the legislature gets to add and remove things from this budget.

Budget proposals are introduced in the Legislature and make their way through the legislative process:

Eventually each bill gets sent to the governor, where he can veto it or sign it into law:

So the governor proposes budget, and the legislature gets to add things and take things out. This is happening in parallel in the house and senate. Then they need to reconcile the budget! And with a democrat-controlled house and republican-controlled senate, that is no easy matter.

Both the governor and house and senate have multiple chances to change the budget. But they all need to agree on something eventually.

Key Dates

  • Oct 15, 2020 - agencies send budget proposals to the MMB commissioner.
  • Nov 30, 2020 - MMB commissioner sends final budget numbers to the ways and means committee ("this is what you can spend").
  • Jan 26, 2021 - Governor Tim Walz sends his budget proposal to the Minnesota legislature.
  • July 1, 2021 - Next budget cycle commences. We aim to have a REDUCED police budget in this cycle.

Key People

Minnesota Management and Budget (MMB)

Our current MMB commissioner is Myron Frans.

Myron Frans's contact info:

  • Email: myron.frans@state.mn.us
  • Phone: (651) 201-8011

Ways and Means Committee

Committee Chair Rep. Lyndon Carlson, Sr. (DFL) District: 45A 651-296-4255 Email: rep.lyndon.carlson@house.mn

Vice Chair Rep. Liz Olson (DFL) District: 07B 651-296-4246 Email: rep.liz.olson@house.mn