Gov. Walz's budget would send $175 checks to Minnesotans from surplus

Governor Tim Walz is proposing $700 million in direct payments to Minnesotans from the state's $7.7 billion surplus as part of his budget plan.

According to the governor, the budget, if approved, would include sending checks of $175 to single tax filers earning up to $164,400 while couples earning up to $273,470 would get double that, $350.

"We want to get checks out right away, and put them in people's hands," the governor said during a press conference on Thursday. "We'll send those checks out, I would encourage the legislature to do so as quickly as possible, to the vast majority of Minnesotans, those who are working-class Minnesotans… Those who are out there… make sure they get some of that surplus back in their hands.

The governor says another priority to get out the "hero pay" to frontline workers during the pandemic.

Walz's office says more than 2.7 million Minnesotans would receive a check under the proposal. The $700 million in payments represents slightly less than 10 percent of the surplus.

This week, the governor also announced a $2.7 billion public construction plan as part of his budget, utilizing just $276 million in surplus money.