December 6, 2012

State Budget Forecasts

Recent state budget forecasts in Minneosta present no great surprise in human services spending.  Growth in the spending was pretty much what was predicted.  The forecast reports that overall our economic is still sluggish and has not returned to pre-2008 levels.

FY 2012-2013 has $1.33 billion Surplus

State general fund revenues for the 2012-13 biennium are projected to be up by $1.076 billion, while general fund spending is projected to be $262 million below earlier estimates.  This means that for the current biennium which ends on June 30, 2013 we have a $1.33 billion surplus.  However, state law requires that any forecast balance for the current biennium be used to reduce the $2.4 billion school aid shift. After the buyback, $1.1 billion in school shifts will remain and this surplus goes away.

FY 2014-2015 deficit is $1.095

The budget outlook for the FY 2014-2015 biennium has changed little since the estimates given at August’s special legislative session when a $1.079 billion shortfall was projected.  A $1.095 billion deficit is expected in the next biennium beginning on July 1, 2013.

Health Care Expenditures

Overall, spending estimates for the remainder of this biennium and for the FY 2014-15 are largely unchanged from prior estimates.  Health and human services spending is down $196 million in FY 2012-13 and $185 million in FY 2014-15. The vast majority of the savings is driven by changes in Medical Assistance (MA). Increased pharmacy rebates in FY 2012-15 for all MA eligibility categories and reduced case load and average costs of providing care amongst a number of eligibility groups account for the lower spending estimates.  Health and Human Services Expenditures Grow $743 million from FY 2012-13 to FY 2014-15 and $761 million from FY 2014-15 to FY 2016-17.

For additional information on health care expenditures, go to the “Complete Forecast” link at this website  and then go to pages 78-86.  This is pretty thorough and discusses the Affordable Care Act as well.