More than $96 million from iron mining taxes went back into the communities in 2017, according to the Department of Revenue’s 2017 Mining Tax Guide which was released yesterday.
These tax dollars were distributed in 2017 based on the 2016 production year. The report shows Minnesota’s iron mines produced more than 29 million tons of ore in 2016 – the lowest production since 2011.
“This just goes to show what a huge impact Minnesota’s iron mining industry has on our region,” said Iron Mining Association of Minnesota (IMA) President Kelsey Johnson, noting that global pressures aided in the temporary idling of more than half of the iron mining facilities in Minnesota in 2016. Today, all the pellet producing facilities are running once again and operating at full capacity.
“Despite the downturn caused by these significant global pressures, millions of dollars still went into our communities,” Johnson said.
The majority of the 2017 production tax dollars – more than $38 million – went to the Iron Range Resources & Rehabilitation Board which reinvests funds into Iron Range communities, businesses, and workforce development.
Nearly $22 million went to local school districts, $11 million went to property tax relief, and the remaining $25 million went to cities, townships, and counties in various ways.
“Our iron mines affect our lives beyond the physical things we use every day made of iron and steel,” Johnson said. “Minnesota iron supports our schools, relieves property tax costs, and reinvests in community development.”