Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Bevin Scamming Taxpayers With Budget Cut Fuckery

If your goal is actually to balance the budget rather than just drown the last shreds of public service and government in the Commonwealth, there are a few sources of money you should tap before attacking the agencies that serve Kentucky citizens.

Start with the $1.8 million he's handing to the freakazoid grifters of the Big Wooden Box.  Then however much he paid his buddies to recommend destroying the state pension system in order to save it.  Then let's make rich fucks and corporations pay their fair share of taxes that they haven't paid for the last 30 years.

Then we'll see how much the "shortfall" is. 

Bevin's lying.  Again.

The Bevin administration asked constitutional officers and cabinet secretaries Friday to cut spending in most state agencies by 17.4 percent this fiscal year to address an expected $200 million budget shortfall.

The cuts would not affect SEEK, the state’s school funding formula; universities; Medicaid; the Department of Corrections; and debt payments, said Bevin communications director Amanda Stamper.

In a letter to state officials, State Budget Director John Chilton said Kentucky “must start preparing for the ongoing financial challenges facing the state” and come up with a budget reduction plan by Sept. 25.

Chilton said the cuts would save an estimated $350 million, enough to close the $200 million projected shortfall for the fiscal year that began July 1 and replenish the state’s $150 million rainy day fund for emergencies. He said the emergency fund will be spent in coming months and must be replaced to protect the state’s credit rating.

Kentucky has endured repeated rounds of budget cuts since the Great Recession of 2008. In all, some state agencies will have seen more than 70 percent of their budgets disappear in the last decade, according to the liberal-leaning Kentucky Center for Economic Policy.

House Minority Leader Rocky Adkins, D-Morehead, called Bevin’s request “unprecedented.”
The possible cuts to services, programs and jobs “seem premature,” Adkins said.

“We’re only in the third month of the new fiscal year and the governor’s move is based on a projection from a group of independent economists,” Adkins said. “It would seem to me to be better and more responsible to wait until more months pass in the fiscal year to get a better reading of what the shortfall might be.”

Jason Bailey, executive director of the Berea-based Kentucky Center for Economic Policy, said Friday that the new cuts “are sudden, so early in the fiscal year.”

He said Friday’s announcement coupled with Thursday’s announcement by the administration that local governments in Kentucky might have to contribute up to 60 percent more money next year to provide pensions for their employees is “clearly an attempt to create a sudden crisis.”

“We need long-term solutions more carefully and thoughtfully reached,” he said.

Bevin promised as recently as July that he would call a special legislative session this year to overhaul the state’s tax system and fix its financially ailing pension plans, but he has since backed away from that promise and said lawmakers should consider the issues separately, starting with pensions.

Pension consultants hired by Bevin released a list of recommendations last week that would save an estimated $1 billion, though leading lawmakers have said some of the most controversial proposals are “highly unlikely.”
Without the changes, Chilton has said the state would have to cut funding for K-12 schools by $510 million and slash spending at most other agencies by at least 16.8 percent to make up the difference. Meanwhile, Bevin has pledged to fight any proposal that increases taxes to pay for pensions.
Here's an easy way to judge anything Bevin says:  If Governor I Got Mine Fuck You wants it, do everything you can to do the opposite.

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