BISMARCK — The state of North Dakota has nearly refilled a rainy day fund after recent budget woes nearly drained it, Gov. Doug Burgum said Friday, Aug. 23.
The 2017-19 budget cycle ended June 30 with a higher-than-expected general fund balance of about $611 million, which will send $546 million to the Budget Stabilization Fund. The fund, which is capped by law at $726.5 million, will total nearly $660 million, Burgum's office said in a news release.
Lawmakers raided the fund to balance the 2015-17 budget as falling oil and farm commodity prices slowed tax revenues.
"Given that our revenues remain largely dependent on commodity prices beyond our control, we must replenish reserves to withstand future economic downturns, protect taxpayers and maintain essential services,” the Republican governor said in a statement.
Lawmakers ended the 2019 session in late April by cementing a $4.8 billion general fund budget, which was part of a record $14.7 billion total spending plan.
Meanwhile, Burgum said July tax revenues were 7.6% ahead of the revenue forecast lawmakers adopted, which Office of Management and Budget Director Joe Morrissette said was "very conservative."