Sunday, December 4th, 2016

Digging a hole with Other People’s Money

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The state legislature is poised again to pass another budget repair bill for the current fiscal year. For those of you counting, this is attempt number three. Like the proposed state budget for next year, SB232 raids federal stimulus dollars to pay the state’s operational costs:

Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
Current law lapses $291,000,000 in the 2008−09 fiscal year from the state school aid appropriation to the general fund and directs the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) to use $291,000,000 in federal funds received under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) to make payments to school districts in June 2009.

This bill lapses an additional $261,278,000 in school aid to the general fund in the 2008−09 fiscal year and directs DPI to use an additional $261,278,000 in federal funds received under ARRA to make payments to school districts in June 2009. For further information see the state and local fiscal estimate, which will be printed as an appendix to this bill.

Somebody really needs to ask President Obama on Thursday if this is what his administration meant by “shovel ready.” The legislature is shovelling something all right.

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