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Lawmakers Moving on Budget Plans that Do Not Include Tax Reform


And there are just over two weeks left, until numerous 18,000 state government workers are laid off, unless an operating budget is in place.

West Virginia lawmakers are one step closer to passing a state budget, as the state Senate passed an over four million dollar budget bill Tuesday evening. The overall spending is about the same, although some of the details are different.

Teachers would not get a 2-percent pay raise under the budget passed by the Senate, and $25 million for the Governor Jim Justice's "Save Our State" fund was eliminated.

Leaders from Louisiana colleges and universities, the state Department of Health, prisons an...

It also cuts $34 million in state Medicaid funding that would be subject to a 3-to-1 federal match - meaning $136 million in total funding would be sacrificed.

As expected, the Ohio Senate took action on June 12 outlining changes to the state budget in its own bill, Substitute House Bill 49 (Smith). It obviously doesn't spend as much as what he wanted to spend, but it is spending his new revenue estimate.

That meant the bill does not rely on Rainy Day funding.

The Senate has stated that further reductions to its proposed bill are unlikely to be needed during Conference Committee.

This was perhaps the driving factor behind numerous Senate's decisions, as the state's revenue woes are something we have written about extensively.

Ferns presented the budget bill on the Senate floor, and took a grilling from Democrats.

The Alaska House could vote as early as Monday on its version of the capital budget.

Armstead said delegates are likely to make some changes to what the Senate passed, including changing the mix of cuts.

So, while Armstead said his members would like to avoid the deep cuts to higher education and Medicaid made in the Senate version, it is also possible that after all of the back and forth, lawmakers could approve a budget for 2018 this week that includes no new revenue from a tax reform plan.

Armstead expressed disappointment that a conference committee considering a revenue bill that would have raised roughly an additional $89 million ended in a stalemate. But the three Senate Republican appointees didn't sign the official conference report, meaning the conference lacked a majority from the Senate.

In 2016, the Republican supermajority led the Legislature in passing the Taxpayer Pay Raise Act, which Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves praised as the largest tax cut in MS history.

Even a tax to telecommunications - largely found acceptable to the governor and all caucuses - has failed to make it through the legislative process because it's been tied up with other, more controversial measures.

"Our position all along was to avoid cuts through tax reform", Ferns said.

The senators have been willing to compromise, but they have been left without other options, he said.

"You're going to be faced with a decision that is just this - shut down the government or hurt our people more".

"I think we still have the votes to kill the budget", he said.

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