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2020-2021 proposed budget submitted to county board

On Aug. 6, Ramsey County Manager Ryan O'Connor proposed to the Ramsey County Board of Commissioners a biennial budget of $741.7 million for 2020 and $763.4 million for 2021. This represents a 0.5% increase of $3.6 million in 2020 and a 2.9% increase of $21.7 million in 2021.

“This proposed budget invests in transformative change that ensures that Ramsey County is a forward-thinking, people-centered organization and is continually adapting and improving in the pursuit of excellence,” said O’Connor. “In this budget we are focused on advancing our strategic priorities through systems transformation, investments in the people we serve and the employees providing that service, and in successfully implementing and managing change across a large and complex organization.”


About $327.1 million (44%) of the proposed budget is funded through property taxes. The 2020-2021 budget calls for an increase in Ramsey County’s property tax levy of 4.75% ($14.7 million) in 2020 and 4.5% ($15.3 million) in 2021.

Property taxes are calculated and levied based on properties’ market values. In the proposed 2020 budget, the owner of a median-valued single-family home in Saint Paul ($199,800) would pay an additional $52 per year in county taxes on a projected property value increase of $13,600. Roseville median-valued single-family home values ($272,000) are largely representative of Ramsey County’s suburbs, where owners would pay an additional $78 per year on an estimated property value increase of $17,100.

Learn more about the property tax system in this short video from the League of Minnesota Cities.


O’Connor presented several new initiatives that are proposed in 2020 and 2021 that span the operational areas of the county. Countywide initiatives include:

  • Create a new program – Transforming Systems Together – that recognizes that changing system outcomes requires investing in innovative and inclusive approaches to program design and delivery. Building on Ramsey County’s significant successes in its criminal justice reform efforts that have empowered impacted communities, improved outcomes and saved taxpayers money, Transforming Systems Together will focus further upstream to prevent the justice system from becoming the county’s most recognized presence in a community. 
  • Invest in an aligned countywide approach to advancing racial equity inside the organization and across the services it provides, alongside the establishment of a dedicated source of funding that ensures that community engagement becomes a core component of all work advanced by Ramsey County.
  • Establish a common “Residents First” approach to service delivery that is clearly and publicly defined as a standard of excellence that the organization will measure itself against, with specific investments in Residents-First initiatives that have a noticeable, positive impact on people and policies, county technology and county buildings.
  • Oversee significant change management efforts and institute consistent approaches to project implementation that ensure that all significant projects undertaken by Ramsey County transition from vision into reality in a timely, efficient and professional manner.

Key expenditures by service team are listed in the full press release.

Detailed budget documents and a video of the proposed budget presentation are available at

Next steps and public hearings

The Ramsey County Board of Commissioners will adopt a maximum tax levy on September 17 and is scheduled to vote on a final budget December 17, 2019.

View the complete budget schedule

Each of the county's service teams will present their proposed budget to the board throughout August and September. Residents are encouraged to provide feedback online or at two public hearings:

Posted on Tuesday, August 6, 2019 - 1:01 p.m.