The State of Minnesota is forecasting a $7.7 billion tax surplus and already politicians are tripping over themselves trying to spend it. But is it really their money to spend?

When I was a kid I would sometimes ask my dad for money to take part in an activity. He would ask where I was going and how much it was going to cost. I gave him an estimate, he'd hand me a $20 bill and say 'bring back the change.'

If I went to a movie, he'd ask how much the ticket cost and what else I spent the money on. Then, he would ask me for the change back so he could spend it on other things he wanted or needed.

If I asked him for $20 to go to the movies and I came home two hours later after having gone to the movie plus treating myself to a Green Day CD, he'd be furious. That wasn't what I told him that I needed the money for. His money.

This was money my dad had worked hard to earn and he gave it to me in confidence that I would use it for what I had needed it for. Any "extra" money was to be returned to him because it was HIS MONEY. I didn't just get to take the change and brainstorm creative ways to spend my unexpected windfall.

Taxes are not intended to be 'fun money' for the government to take and spend on whatever they feel like if they end up with extra. It is not THEIR money- it is ours and if there is extra it should be given back.

If you divide the 'surplus' of $7.7 billion by the entire population of Minnesota, everyone would get $1,365. The number would probably be higher considering the population includes kids and others who are not filing taxes.

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