ST. PAUL (WJON News) -- The latest economic forecast just released shows the state expects a 2.4-billion-dollar surplus for the 2024-25 budget cycle -- right about where analysts predicted it would be.

The surplus is much smaller than the whopping 17-plus billion dollars that lawmakers received news of exactly one year ago.

Most of that was used during the last legislative session for a combination of Democrats' spending priorities and tax cuts and rebates -- which Republicans said, and continue to say, were a fraction of what Minnesotans deserved to get back.

Officials say the current 2.4-billion-dollar surplus is driven by higher expected consumer spending and growth in corporate profits.

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They note the near-term economic outlook for the U-S has improved, but caution that higher estimated spending increases for education and health and human services could put the *state* budget in the red in 2026 and '27.

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