The state of Iowa is projected to have a healthy surplus when the current fiscal year ends.
According to the state’s nonpartisan Legislative Services Agency, the Hawkeye State will post a surplus balance of $414 million by June 30. Iowa is forecast to accrue close to $800 million in cash reserves and economic emergency funds.
The positive financial news comes after a recent state-by-state analysis of finances by Chicago-based nonpartisan think tank Truth in Accounting. The fiscal watchdog recently graded Iowa a "B" in its analysis of the state’s financial condition. Only three states received an "A" grade.
Truth in Accounting's analysis found "Iowa has $8.5 billion in bills and $9.3 billion in available assets to pay those bills after capital and restricted assets are excluded. This results in a $776.8 million surplus, or a $700 Taxpayer Surplus™, which is each taxpayer's share of the state surplus after bills have been paid."
Republicans control both chambers of the statehouse in Des Moines. They say they will be unwavering in their commitment to keep expenses in line and ensure that taxpayers are protected.
Several Democratic lawmakers way that the surplus comes at a cost: neglecting unmet needs.
Praising the state’s leadership for being “very good stewards of the taxpayer dollars,” Gov. Kim Reynolds said that the next two-year state budget plan is being worked on and will be submitted to the Legislature at the beginning of next year. Reynolds said public safety, education, and health care will be among the top priorities for any additional funding.
She stated that some areas need more funding than others after years of belt-tightening.