August 21, 2002
More good budget news (not)

Remember that $5 billion budget shortfall that's predicted for next year? It's now $7 billion. And both candidates for governor know exactly what they're not going to do about it:

"We're going to scrub the budget. We're going to look for waste and inefficiency in government," said Mark Sanders, spokesman for Democrat gubernatorial candidate Tony Sanchez. "There will be no sacred cows.

"Taxes are off the table and will remain off the table," he added.

Republican Gov. Rick Perry's spokesman Kathy Walt said "it's way too early" to be talking about a $7 billion budget shortfall. Rylander won't release her revenue estimates for the coming budget cycle until late this year or early next year, and the economy could improve.

"With a $114 billion budget, he is not going to support new taxes and he doesn't think the Legislature is going to support new taxes," she said of Perry. "It ought to be able to do it by setting its priorities on spending."

It's just a game of chicken. The budget is $114 billion, but only $61 billion of that is discretionary, so a $7 billion shortfall is more than ten percent of the pie. As the story notes, $7 billion funds the prison system and the Department of Public Safety. Good luck finding $7 billion to cut that enough people agree needs to be cut.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on August 21, 2002 to Budget ballyhoo

Wow. Uninspiring ideas from uninspiring candidates. Whodathunkit??

Posted by: Jack Cluth on August 21, 2002 7:06 PM