Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) - The St. Paul based think tank Minnesota "2020's" latest report indicates the recent recession, combined with "no new tax" policies, have resulted in a 20 year low in general fund revenue.
The drop in revenue has led to a $5.2B spending decline.
Since the early 2000's, most Northland school districts, including Duluth, Hibbing, and Virginia, have experienced a 15 percent per–pupil decrease in state funding.
Hermantown and Esko have seen an 18 percent state aid decline.
To stop this funding slide, Minnesota 2020 officials say state policymakers should increase taxes and make investments that would kick start Minnesota's economy.
"If you look at previous decades, its had an economy that's done better than other states because we did invest. But in the last decade, where our spending plummeted and where investments plummeted, Minnesota's economy has not kept up. That's why on tax day, the message is clear. It's time for the wealthy to pay their fair share, and to get investments going again," Matt Entenza, Minnesota 2020 Board Member, said.
Minnesota 2020 spokesperson Matt Entenza says if the DFL financing proposals, under discussion at the Minnesota Legislature pass, it could halt the state's economic decline.
Among the proposals being debated at the legislature is a 6–percent increase in the Local Government Aid funding formula.