Thursday, July 5, 2007

In The Black

With a new fiscal year off and running, the Department of Finance and Administration reports the state surplus to be just over $1 billion. Most of that money is already accounted for, with almost half going to school facilities. According to the DF&A, when all is said and done, state government should begin the new budget cycle with roughly $112 million to spare. A rainy day fund if you will. Speaking of which, I endorsed a bill by Rep. Maloch back during the session to create just such a fund of $200 million with specific spending mechanisms tied to it. Even though it never got traction, I still believe that is a prudent plan and will be supporting similar legislation in the future. With the recently enacted tax cuts now in effect, and hopefully more coming in 2009, that $112 million is an encouraging sign.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Your rainy day fund is money straight out of the tax payer's pockets. Here's a novel idea: GIVE IT BACK TO US SO WE CAN HAVE ARE OWN EVERYDAY FUND!

David "Bubba" Powers said...

Anonymous,
Thank you for the comment, although your sarcasm seems a bit unwarranted. But I used to know a baseball player who everytime he slid into third and the umpire called him safe he would jump up and gripe at the ump, even though the call went in his favor. He just had a habit of griping I guess. By the way, his name was anonymous too. Ironic ain't it.

If you don't think it a prudent idea to have money set aside for emergencies and/or a catastrophic event, then according to your theory we just simply have to raise taxes at that point to pay for it. Should we have given the surplus back this year or met the Court's mandate regarding Lakeview? Should we not have cut the grocery tax? How about the break for farmers on off road diesel? Or the sales tax reduction to manufacturer's on energy. Should we not do as much as possible to keep those jobs in place? I'm a taxpayer also and I'm responsible for my family. When it comes to an emergency at my house, I have money set back to help handle whatever it might be. You see I have to be responsible so as not to put my family in a bind. And I think most Arkansans believe in that principle. So regardless of your novel ideas, I'm going to try and be responsible to my family and the entire state when it comes to budgeting are(sic) money.

jep said...

Bubba,
At one time I remember reading about rainy day funds that are set up all through the different departments of state government. I would be curious to know just how much all these funds add up to that each group of people inside the state have set aside.