Thursday, January 03, 2008

What the hell? We have a surplus?

From Wood TV

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Reduced spending and higher than expected tax receipts helped the state leap into the new year with a $350 million budget surplus.

Michigan ended its fiscal year Sept. 30 with $259.1 million. Annual state financial reports also listed the School Aid Fund with more than $94 million.

The surplus is for the 2006-07 fiscal year, a period in which a deficit of more than $1 billion was filled by delaying payments to state universities and community colleges, dipping into funds set aside for job training and substance abuse treatment and selling off part of the state's future tobacco settlement. Taxes were not raised to deal with the shortfall.

Budget officials and state legislative leaders will decide how the extra money will be used. The Senate Fiscal Agency has predicted a deficit of $34 million for the state general fund next fiscal year, while others have warned of a larger shortfall, the Detroit Free Press reported Thursday.

Officials are to meet Jan. 11 to update Michigan's budget forecasts for the current fiscal year and the one that starts Oct. 1.

The surplus is not part of this year's budget agreement, under which taxes were raised by $1.35 billion and spending was cut or restricted by more than $400 million to help wipe out a $1.75 billion state budget deficit and place the state on sounder financial footing.

"The fact that we've closed the books with a surplus is more advantageous than finding out we're in the hole again," Matt Marsden, spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop, R-Rochester, told The Detroit News.

If this is a real surplus,then what the hell was this horse manure that was spewed by the tax raises. If this is creative accounting, what happened?

If there is a real surplus, then recind the tax increase and give the money back. Don't spend it on new government programs or pork projects.

1 comment:

Freedom from Tyranny said...

Yeah, notice that it says that budget officials and legislative leaders will decide how the surplus is, I mean,, I mean, used.

As I pointed out over at Right Michigan, what is amazing to me is the irony of Romney's ad (was it on purpose?) about the $3B shortfall he faced in Taxachusetts when he took over as governor. He CUT spending, without raising taxes, to eliminate it. This ad is running in a state where the GOP leadership kowed to a tax increase and cuts in projected growth (there was not a budget cut to be found there). Will our GOP leadership in Michigan ever recognize that increased spending is destroying America?

Unfortunately, what is happening in too many places is that Libertarians, who realize that their party would have a difficult time winning, have in the past voted for fiscally conservative and socially moderate Republicans. With the GOP largely abandoning the fiscal conservatism (just look at Bush), many libertarians are embracing Democrats; like Obama. They figure, if neither party will be fiscally sound, why not go for the one that is socially liberal or moderate?

This is the real reason that the GOP is faltering. The DNC has figured out that it can get a whole lot of Independents and Libertarians just by being for civil liberties. The GOP has focused totally on the Huckabee types - the ones that will keep all us sinners in line. That won't fly in most of America, not even the Blue Collar Conservatives of Rural America.

'nuff said,