The governor says it is a balanced budget with no tax increases
POSTED: 04:36 p.m. HST, Dec 19, 2011
LAST UPDATED: 04:54 p.m. HST, Dec 19, 2011
Gov. Neil Abercrombie today released a budget request for the second year of the state’s two-year budget cycle that would increase state spending by $188 million, bringing the state budget to $11.1 billion, up from $10.9 billion.
The governor’s request is a 1.7 percent increase over the fiscal year 2013 budget approved by lawmakers and the governor earlier this year. State spending for fiscal year 2012, which ends in June, is $11 billion.
Abercrombie asked lawmakers for about $120 million in new general fund spending, but the request is offset by about $85 million in savings, so the net increase would be about $35 million. The new spending includes money for welfare, public-school transportation, public-school weighted student formula, health care for the poor, and child protective services.
“This is a balanced budget with no tax increases,” Abercrombie said at a news conference at the state Capitol.
Abercrombie’s request also includes a $1.2 billion increase next fiscal year for capital improvement projects, which would bring the state’s construction budget to $2.2 billion
The governor’s request is based on 14.5 percent revenue growth for this fiscal year projected by the state Council on Revenues. If the projection holds, the state is expected to have a budget surplus.
Abercrombie will ask lawmakers to use a portion of the proceeds from a recent state bond sale to replenish the state’s rainy day and hurricane relief funds, which the governor drained to get through the last fiscal year.
State House and Senate lawmakers will review the governor’s supplemental budget request during the session of the state Legislature that opens in January.