A group representing communities outside the metro area is pushing the legislature for an increase in state aid (local government aid) to fund police, fire departments, libraries, infrastructure and other local needs.  Bradley Peterson with the Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities:

“With the surplus as big as it is, there is absolutely no reason that the state can’t make these kind of investments to keep local communities strong.”

Peterson says preliminary property tax levies are higher, largely driven by inflation.  Governor Tim Walz says:

“The local property tax issue again, that is a result — when you’re seeing these levy increases —  that is a direct result of us not doing the deal in May.”

But come January, Democrats will control both the Minnesota House and Senate, and the governor says he’ll advocate in his budget for increased state aid to cities and counties.  Republican say a nearly 18-billion-dollar budget surplus proves Minnesotans are overtaxed and they should get that money back.