The New Hampshire House and Senate have more room to cut their budgets than other areas of state government, according to a new study from the Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy. The report, Fiscal Management Starts at Home, shows that Legislative Branch spending has grown by 27% in the last four years, compared to a 16.25% increase in total General Fund spending over the same period.
Josiah Bartlett Center Research Associate Joshua Elliott-Traficante, who authored the study, says that lawmakers should be willing to cut their own budgets next year.
“The Legislative Branch has far more room to pare back its budget than any other department in State Government,” Elliott-Traficante writes. “So the decrease should be larger than the 10-15% expected in every other department.”
The report also finds that spending in the Governor’s Executive Office has remained relatively flat over the past two budgets. While personnel costs have increased, they have been offset with savings in other areas, resulting in an increase of less than $54,000 over the past four years.
Elliott-Traficante notes that Governor John Lynch has also requested a 9% cut in his own office’s budget for the next biennium.
Read the full report at NewHampshireWatchdog.org