State Spending Up Budget Down?

Rep. Jordan G. Ulery (R-Hills27)

 

Last week an interesting, and less than accurate, explanation of the New Hampshire budget was presented to readers in Hudson, Litchfiled and Pelham. Common Sense tells us all that the New Hampshire Budget is a disaster. Interestingly the letter’s author failed to mention that while the “budget” was down 1% (a pittance to the 2-4% decreases being undertaken in nearly every other state), state spending rose 10+%.

 

That is correct, the “budget” is down but state spending rose. New Hampshire took out of the budget massive spending for the Liquor Commission, school building and even highway maintenance and transferred them to ‘another pocket.’ State spending is up, but the budget is down. Talk about attempting to deceive us!

 

The Liquor Commission was modified from a state agency to a state enterprise (government run business). That magical trickery accounts for a large portion of the budget change. By this change of classification the monies associated with the operation of that commission are now – with a swing of the wizard’s wand and a poof of smoke - not part of the budget. The revenues, after expenses, are supposed to flow to the state. The presentation before Ways & Means, once the Liquor Commission deigned to answer the summons of our Chairwoman, was less than reassuring to me that there would be any money coming into the state from the change of status.

 

[A Common Sense question for the reader, how do you make money selling a warehouse you own outright to a private entity and then lease back exactly the same property at a high lease fee? That is what the Liquor Commission is doing!]

 

One other thing that may be of interest. The State of New Hampshire sold part of the State Highway System to the State of New Hampshire Turnpike Authority. Yup, the Governor and the Democrat leadership took money from one pocket and put it in the other and called it revenue. Then they took the money from that pocket and put it back in to the first pocket and called it a non-budget expense. Neat trick, wish I could do it with my household budget. It is all there in the magical mystical 2009 New Hampshire Budget.

 

Increasing fees and taxes, during the worst recession since Jimmy Carter (and now, under President Obama’s leadership, heading toward equaling the 1930’s depression) can and has only made a situation more severe. Spending one-time deflationary “porkulus” monies from the printing presses in Washington has already left a 500 million deficit in the 2011-2012 budget. The theory of spending one’s way out of debit has been thoroughly disproven time and time again, yet the allure of the government dole (not-free money) sways the tax and spend crowd away from frugality and Common Sense.

 

Let us look at what the US government agencies says about spending in New Hampshire. The Bureau of the Census says that, since 1960 adjusted for inflation spending by the state has risen 616%. If you don’t believe high state spending has an effect upon growth consider that national the rate of growth from 2000 to 2007 was 15%, New Hampshire’s growth was a paltry 12.5% according to the US Department of Commerce. With the bonding of regular and usual operating expenses, the state debit has blasted the atmosphere by a whopping 238% since 1980 (DOCom).

 

These last two statistics are perhaps the most telling. New Hampshire relies heavily on business taxes, including a business income tax on taxes paid to employees for operating revenue. Democratic Governors, and to a lesser extent a compliant opposition party, have resulted in a measly 3% business growth in NH ranking it 31st in the nation (US Department of Labor). The total number of state employees grew more than 12% from 2000 to 2007, that is four times the rate of growth of the private section which is so heavily taxed (DOCom).

 

According to Mrs. Knowles, the “good” New Hampshire Budget is a benefit to New Hampshire. That is the party line parroted from the Democrat tax and spend elite ruling clique. Yet, the result of that budget are higher taxes, higher fees, more government intrusion into our daily lives, forced taking of our hard earned wages, reduction of disposable income, reduction in savings and, a looming 500 million deficit before we even begin the next budget cycle (sorry here I go proclaiming facts which some call “doom and gloom”). Just how can a 10+% increase in state spending be a benefit? Seems to me that someone should try reading two books of the same name and apply a little Common Sense to legislative activities.