Efforts to eliminate a $66 million deficit in the current state budget will be the subject of a House Finance Committee meeting this Thursday; and more red ink is forecast for the next fiscal year.
The Finance Committee plans to hear from state department directors about attempts to cut higher-than-expected spending. Spending in some departments can rise unexpectedly, for example, due to fluctuations in the inmate population at the state prison or overtime by state workers.
The usual special interest groups are blasting the new state budget approved by the General Assembly. But RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says maybe lawmakers did the best they could in tough times.
Rhode Island’s General Assembly has approved an $8.7 billion taxing and spending plan for the financial year that begins July First. This budget has drawn fire from the usual suspects who roam the marble Statehouse corridors lobbying for their causes.
Education leaders are raising concerns over the House Finance Committee’s proposed budget. The budget fully funds the state’s formula for providing education aid, but there’s no funding for school construction.
On a 14-2 margin, the House Finance Committee Thursday approved an $8.7 billion budget for the fiscal year starting July first. Lawmakers say they hope tax cuts will bolster Rhode Island’s underperforming economy.
The House Finance Committee is expected to vote this Thursday on a new state budget for the fiscal year beginning July first. The General Assembly traditionally makes significant revisions to the governor’s proposed spending plan.
UPDATE: Skenyon began working in Mattiello's office today, according to House spokesman Larry Berman.
With rumors dancing through the Statehouse corridors of power, new House Speaker Nick Mattiello, D-Cranston has yet to reveal his leadership team. Which isn’t unusual, considering he wasn’t formally elected speaker until about an hour ago.
The House Finance Committee will meet this afternoon to review attempts to rein in spending in different state agencies.
Spending above budgeted amounts has been an issue in some different state departments in recent years. The agencies in question include the state Department of Corrections and the Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals.
The heads of those two departments have in the past attributed the higher than expected spending to overtime and other unpredictable expenses.
As tonight’s budget debate in the R.I. House creaks along, some sharp-eyed lawmakers should be asking some hard questions about the item for a capital budget request of more than $3 million to purchase a vacant lot near the State House wedged between the Veterans Memorial Auditorium and the state employee credit union building. . The provision was put in by Gov. Lincoln Chafee’s administration and originally proposed paying $3.5 million for the land, according to fiscal analysis done by House financial staffers.
The Rhode Island House of Representations is set to begin debating Tuesday an 8-billion-dollar budget for the fiscal year starting July first. The budget includes two and a half million dollars to repay bonds for failed video game maker 38 Studios.