Increased Taxes, Structural Deficits, Unwilling to Compromise: The Legislature's Budget
Concord, NH - Legislative leaders hold a press conference on their proposed budget today, here are a few facts that won't get mentioned:
FACT: The Legislature's budget increases taxes
On January 1, 2019 the business profits tax rate (BPT) was lowered to 7.7%. Under the Democrats' budget, the BPT will increase back up to 7.9%. The business enterprise tax (BET) is currently at .6%, and will increase back up to .675% under the Democrats' budget. This is a tax increase. It is not a tax "freeze."
"As a family-run business based in New Hampshire every little bit helps our bottom line, and if our taxes are raised, that will prevent us from hiring more employees and re-investing in our company, including possible expansion," said Moira Bashaw of Alternative Sales Corp.
FACT: The Legislature's budget proposal contains financial promises it cannot keep – including a $93.4M structural deficit
The Legislature's budget overspends revenues in Fiscal Year 21, resulting in a structural deficit of $93.4M. They propose closing this gap by rolling forward one-time revenues to cover the overspending. This financial sleight of hand was for too long a mainstay in Concord. It was because of these same financial tricks that almost $900 million had to be cut from the 2012-2013 State Budget in order to balance it, gutting critical child services and substantial layoffs.
"Households and businesses across this state are expected to balance their checkbooks each month, and so should our government," said Governor Chris Sununu. "The Legislature's budget contains a $94 million structural deficit, and uses one-time funds for ongoing expenses. Should the economy take a downturn, the state will see a massive reduction in services and unprecedented layoffs – we cannot allow that to happen."
FACT: Governor Sununu met the Legislature more than halfway on many of their spending requests
In an effort to pass a bipartisan budget, Governor Sununu has worked to find common ground and compromise on:
- Education funding, through supporting stabilization grants and full-day kindergarten funding.
- Targeted Medicaid provider rates.
- Allocated funding for a new Secure Psychiatric Unit.
- Department of Transportation fleet upgrade.
- $40 million in one-time capital grants to every town and city in New Hampshire.
- Funding for SB 6, SB 11, and SB 14 which increases funding for mental health services and child protection.
"While the Legislature reluctantly removed their income tax from the budget, I have been very clear: I will not support a budget that increases taxes," said Governor Chris Sununu. "I have worked with Legislative leaders and found common ground on many issues and have met them more than halfway on many of their spending requests while also proposing a path forward that does not raise taxes. There are a few lines I will not cross, and the Legislature is knowingly sending a budget to my desk that I cannot support. It is unfortunate that Washington-style politics have crept into New Hampshire. The people of this state deserve better."