Not Really Much Difference Between Hassan’s Proposed Budget and Jasper’s

The hard information about the budget being proposed by the House has been hard to come by.  Rather than comparing proposed spending for the next two year budget to what was actually spent in the prior session, we are inundated with cries and reports of “cuts” “massive cuts” “cruel cuts” “severe cuts” “draconian cuts,” without any frame of reference.  Cuts from Hassan’s proposed budget, cuts from the House’s proposed budget, cuts from the prior two-year budget???

The hard information that has managed to get out through all the hyperbole is that the House budget will increase spending by $400 million over the prior budget.  I have seen reports that Hassan proposes to increase spending by between $650 million (approximately) to $1 billion over the prior budget. Continue reading

Some Questions for Rep. Neal Kurk About the DOT Budget

Dear Rep. Kurk:  I read your op-ed in today’s Union Leader about the 2015-2017 budget.  Your op-ed doesn’t say anything about your proposal to raise the gas tax by seven to eight cents, never mind explain why we should increase the gas tax when you just increased it last budget. Continue reading

With All These “Massive” Budget “Cuts,” We Should be Able to “Slash” Taxes

New Hampshire’s left-of-center press has been reporting cuts, “massive” cuts, “draconian” cuts in New Hampshire’s budget.  The Republicans are willy-nilly “slashing” spending across the board.  That’s also what the Democrats have been saying.

But … if we are making all these massive, draconian, etc., etc., etc. cuts FROM THE 2013-2015 BUDGET, without cutting any taxes, then we must be in a position where tax revenues will far exceed spending over 2015-2017. Continue reading

Under Pressure From Conservatives, Speaker Jasper Admits No Budget Cuts

Well, they finally admitted it.  After days of letting the Democrats create the illusion that Republicans were cutting the budget, Speaker Jasper, who was elected Speaker primarily with Democrat votes, admitted that there are no cuts.  That he intends to raise spending, just not as much as the Governor proposes: Continue reading

Dear NHPR – Increasing Spending Less Than Governor Hassan Wants is Not SLASHING HHS Funding

Check out the title of this article from NHPR yesterday:

NHPR.17MAR15

The first sentence reads, “[t]he Department of Health and Human Services is warning House budget writers against cutting $160 million from the Governor’s proposed budget.”

The “budget writers” are not reducing spending in the 2015-2017 budget from the level in the 2013-2015 budget.  Rather, they are simply proposing an increase in spending that is $160 million less than the Governor’s proposed increase. Continue reading

Speaker Jasper and Democrats in Agreement on Budget Cuts

So we have had two days of nonstop catawauling by the Democrats about budget cuts by the House Republicans, with no pushback –or at least none that I can find- from the House Republicans.

First of all, the state budget is not going to be cut. The budget, which runs from July, 2015 through June, 2017 will be higher than the prior two-year budget, materially higher.

The catawauling about budget cuts refers to cuts from the Governor’s proposed budget, which proposes to increase spending by 6.4 percent over the biennium (t a time when, based on the most recent available data the New Hampshire economy is only growing .9 percent per year). That’s like telling someone that your boss “cut” your salary by $15,000.00, when what happened is you proposed increasing your pay from $50,000.00 to $70,000.00, but your boss would only give you a raise to $55,000.00. Continue reading