DES MOINES — Iowa is headed toward the end of 2019 financially flush, with more than a billion dollars on hand. The state ended its fiscal year in June with a surplus of more than 289-million dollars and an additional 760-million in the cash reserves.
Governor Kim Reynolds says that gives the state some budget flexibility. “We’re going to look at maybe expediting some of the triggers we put in place with the tax reform that I signed a year ago,” Reynolds says, “but I want to make sure we can still maintain our priorities, like education and public safety and putting in place an integrated and coordinated health care system.”
Despite the sizable surplus, Reynolds says she doesn’t want to encourage more spending by state lawmakers. “We are working different models and we’ll be working with the legislature to see what those opportunities are while we still have a growing economy,” she says. “There are significant challenges that we’re facing, some significant headwinds, so we just want to be conscientious of that as well, as we move through this next legislative session.”
Reynolds says the surplus could lead to more tax reform. “We are always looking for opportunities to allow Iowans to keep more of their hard-working dollars,” the governor says. “Any time that we can reduce taxes on businesses and families, we’re going to look for opportunities to do that while being fiscally responsible in the process.”
Reynolds says she’ll be talking to legislators about the surplus in the weeks leading up to the 2020 session, which opens January 13th. This year’s 289-point-three million dollar surplus is more than twice as large as last year’s surplus.