South Dakota ends fiscal year with $96.8 million surplus

PIERRE, S.D.(Press Release) – On Monday, Governor Kristi Noem announced that South Dakota closed the 2023 budget year with a surplus of $96.8 million.

“South Dakota’s economy is continuing to thrive because we keep state government small, taxes are low, and we spend within our means. This surplus shows that what we are doing here is working,” said Governor Noem. “As long as we continue to budget responsibly, families across the state will be able to keep more of their money in their pockets, and we will be able to avoid unnecessary debt by using this surplus for future prison construction costs.”

State government spent $79.7 million less than appropriated in fiscal year 2023, with the total revenue finishing above the legislative adopted forecast by $17.1 million. Sales and use tax, which is the state’s largest revenue source, finished 0.5% below estimates, down $6.9 million.

“South Dakota state government continues to budget responsibly on both the revenue and spending sides of the equation,” said Jim Terwilliger, Commissioner of the South Dakota Bureau of Finance and Management. “Our state’s economic metrics are very strong because we stick to our conservative budget principles. Going forward, we must keep following those principles. With so much uncertainty surrounding the national economy, conservative spending will ensure our long-term fiscal health.”

Over the last several years, South Dakota has seen unprecedented economic growth. By keeping the state “Open for Business” during the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Noem ensured that South Dakota came out stronger than ever. South Dakota continues to maintain a AAA credit rating and is one of the only states with a fully-funded pension. Now, with the lowest unemployment in the history of the nation, South Dakotans are still working hard and guaranteeing that our kids and grandkids will inherit a thriving state.

By law, the fiscal year 2023 surplus was transferred to the state’s budget reserves. The state’s reserves now total $335.7 million or 14.7% of the fiscal year 2024 general fund budget.