ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - Forget the return of deep snow and cold temperatures. The big forecast Minnesota's political class is watching this week has to do with the state budget rather than the weather.
Gov. Mark Dayton and the Legislature learn Thursday whether they'll have a projected surplus or deficit awaiting them when the 2014 session starts. Economic officials are delivering a comprehensive report on the state economy. It will go a long way toward calibrating expectations next year.
Minnesota tax collections have been running ahead of projections since the new fiscal year began in July. But this is the first detailed look that also includes spending trends.
By law, Minnesota's public schools get first crack at any surplus dollars reflected in the forecast because of state IOUs to them.