Press Releases

 

Entries in State Revenue (30)

Friday
Jun192015

JOINT RELEASE: NH Senate, NH House Finance propose strong budget for NH 

Major priorities include full funding for special services, reduced business taxes

 

Concord, NH – The Senate and House Finance Conferees today voted to approve an $11.3 billion spending plan that focuses on the needs of New Hampshire citizens, and supports small businesses and the economy without raising or adding any new taxes.

 

“We have been working for more than three months to find solutions that address the Senate’s priorities while living within our means and without raising or adding any new taxes,” said Senate Finance Chair Jeanie Forrester (R-Meredith). “This budget successfully achieves these goals in a balanced plan that will result in a stronger future for New Hampshire.”

 

“Through the work of both the House and Senate, we have produced a budget that fully funds services essential to our most vulnerable citizens, including services for the developmentally disabled, at-home health care, and even increased funding to $42 million in drug and alcohol prevention and treatment as well as provide a modest tax reduction for our state’s small businesses. Small businesses employ 95% of the private sector workforce and by making this reduction, we provide a foundation for them to grow, creating more quality jobs for New Hampshire people and providing a solid economic foundation from which our state can thrive into the future.”

 

“Helping people and helping businesses do not need to be mutually exclusive priorities and the legislative budget has established a fair middle ground that fully supports both major statewide initiatives. I continue to believe that this thoughtful, conservative, yet compassionate budget which will serve the state’s needs,” continued Forrester.

“Governor Maggie Hassan’s budget proposal included $129 million in new taxes that would hurt New Hampshire’s citizens. We have worked with the Governor on many issues to come to a place where we can agree. The threat of a veto comes because of her unwillingness to work with the legislature to find common ground on certain issues,” said Forrester.

 

“Republicans were elected with a mandate from the voters to keep spending in check, and to keep taxes low while maintaining vital services,” said House Finance Chairman Neal Kurk (R-Weare). “We’ve achieved these goals in this budget.  But the governor would rather increase taxes on the people of New Hampshire than support a balanced, fiscally responsible budget like the one approved by the committee of conference today. Since the House first presented its budget In March we’ve had the opportunity to review our updated revenue stream.  As a result, we were pleased to be able to restore and, in some cases, increase funding to important programs and services, including developmentally disabled, elderly services,  alcohol and drug abuse prevention, education, public safety and infrastructure, while restoring the state’s Rainy Day Fund to protect the state’s bond rating. The House and Senate made an important decision not to include an extension of Medicaid Expansion in any version of the budget.  Review of data, costs, and the federal government’s commitment to its share of funding will be considered in the next legislative session, separately from the budget,” added Kurk.

 

“Business tax rates in New Hampshire are some of the highest in the nation and have slowed job growth and diminished New Hampshire’s competitiveness for small businesses. I am proud of this budget because it considers our state’s small businesses, which are the foundation for providing services to those in need,” said Senate President Chuck Morse (R-Salem).

 

“In this responsible plan, tax rates for small businesses will be reduced for the first time in 20 years. Reductions to the Business Profits Tax and Business Enterprise Tax would be phased in starting in 2017 and DRA estimates this would reduce tax revenues by $21 million over the biennium, which is fully accounted for in this balanced budget,” Morse added.

 

“It seems the Governor’s priorities have changed from supporting a well-balanced plan to supporting narrow special interests aimed at her seeking higher office. Governor Hassan needs to refocus her attention to the citizens of New Hampshire and doing what is best for them,” said Morse.

 

“A veto of this budget that both supports the most vulnerable citizens in our state and works to build a stronger business economy that creates good jobs would hurt the state of New Hampshire and I hope Governor Hassan will seriously consider the budget before her and reconsider this unreasonable and dramatic conclusion,” Morse continued.

 

“We were elected and sent to the State House to represent the people of New Hampshire and not the governor or her special interests,” said Speaker Shawn Jasper (R-Hudson). “This budget spends millions of dollars over and above the current budget and yet the governor continues to talk about ‘cuts’.  We cannot and will not tax our way to prosperity on the backs of the citizens of New Hampshire.  The budget process is about compromise and give and take.  Thus far the legislature has done all the giving and yet the governor still wants more,” said Jasper.  “It is time we took back the New Hampshire Advantage that, until recent years, we had enjoyed within the region.  Through strategic business tax cuts in this budget we will once again be able to hang out the ‘open for business’ sign in New Hampshire.  In the long run it will attract new business and result in more jobs for the people of our state,” added Jasper.

 

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Thursday
Jun112015

NH House - House vs Senate Revenue Estimates 6-9-15 

FYI,

Attached is the comparison sheet showing differences between the House Ways & Means estimates adopted yesterday and the Senate’s, adopted in April.

While year to year, and source to source estimates may not mirror the Senate, the net difference, when looking at revised FY15, and outlook for FY16 & 17 is $1.1m.

To read the PDF file Click Here ---> House vs Senate Revenue estimates 6-9-15

Wednesday
Jun102015

NH Senate supports revised NH House revenue estimates 

Concord, NH – The House Ways and Means Committee today agreed on updated revenue estimates for FY 16-17 that serve as a base for developing the State’s operating budget. The Committee estimates for the end of the current Fiscal Year and the next two years are within $1.1 million of the Senate’s estimates.

Senator David Boutin (R-Hooksett), who chairs the Senate Ways and Means Committee, released the following statement on the revised House revenue estimates.

“The House’s updated estimates are remarkably close to Senate estimates that were agreed to late last month and are reflective of the steady, positive growth the state has seen and that we expect will continue,” said Senator David Boutin (R-Hooksett).

“Closing the gap between the Senate and House revenue estimates sets a firm baseline for spending as the legislature prepares for the Committee of Conference on the budget bills.”

“The Senate looks forward to continuing its work with the House throughout the Committee of Conference process,” added Boutin.

General and Education Trust Fund Revenue Estimates

 

House

Senate

FY15

$2,255.0m

$2,244.5m

FY16

$2,288.4m

$2,287.6m

FY17

$2,320.6m

$2,333.0m

 

Wednesday
Jun032015

NH Sen Boutin pleased with May revenue numbers  

Concord, NH – Senator David Boutin (R-Hooksett) released the following statement on May’s revenue estimates. 

“We are obviously pleased with such strong revenues in May, which exceeded forecasts by $10 million. With one month to go in this budget, we’re within two percent of the conservative revenue projections we adopted two years ago,” said Senator David Boutin (R-Hooksett), Chair of the Senate Ways and Means Committee. 

“This reinforces the Senate Ways and Means Committee’s decision to anticipate moderate growth in state revenues over the next two years. It is tempting to count on even faster growth in our economy in order to justify higher spending in the budget, but that would leave us vulnerable to a huge budget deficit if those rosy revenues never materialize,” Boutin added.

Thursday
May212015

NHDP - ICYMI: NHFPI: "Senate Revenue Estimates Insufficient to Restore Services and Cut Business Taxes"

Concord, N.H. – The New Hampshire Fiscal Policy Institute points out that if Senate Republicans continue to increase spending without raising any new revenue, they will inevitably be forced to revert to the fiscally irresponsible budget gimmicks like back-of-the-budget cuts and inflated lapses that the legislature has relied on for years.  
 
NHFPI: Senate Revenue Estimates Insufficient to Restore Services and Cut Business Taxes
http://www.nhfpi.org/commoncents/senate-revenue-estimates-insufficient-to-restore-services-and-cut-business-taxes.html
 
Earlier today, the Senate Ways and Means Committee finalized its revenue estimates for the FY 2016-2017 biennium, projecting that, absent changes in law, the General and Education Funds will collect $4.62 billion over the next two years. While that forecast is $118 million higher than the one on which the House of Representatives premised its version of the FY16-17 budget, preliminary decisions made by the Senate Finance Committee late last week and early this one have already effectively committed over half of that $118 million difference. As a result, the Senate’s version of the budget would not be able to restore major funding reductions approved by the lower chamber and also enact a sizable reduction in business taxes in the next biennium.
 
Overall, Senate Ways and Means projects that General and Education Fund revenue will total $2.24 billion in FY 2015, rise by 1.9 percent in FY 2016, and climb by another 2.0 percent by FY 2017. (By comparison, the House anticipated aggregate growth rates of 1.3 percent and 1.0 percent respectively; the Governor expected increases of 2.7 and 1.9 percent.) Among New Hampshire’s more sizable sources of revenue, Senate Ways and Means forecasts that the combination of the state’s two business taxes – the business profits tax (BPT) and business enterprise tax (BET) – will amount to $545.5 million in FY 2015 and grow by 2.5 percent in each year of the upcoming biennium, a rate of growth considerably above the rates assumed by the House. In addition, Senate Ways and Means foresees comparatively robust growth in the meals and rooms tax, anticipating growth of 6 percent per year; Governor Hassan’s Consensus Revenue Estimation Panel recently updated its expectations for that tax to 6.4 percent growth in FY16 and 5.9 percent in FY17.
 
Consequently, Senate budget writers, in effect, have $118 million more with which to work than their counterparts in the House did in assembling their version of the budget. However, the Senate Finance Committee has already begun to allocate those funds. Last week, Senate Finance removed provisions from the House’s version of the FY16-17 budget that would have directed roughly $52 million from the Renewable Energy Fund to the General Fund; thus, it will need to use $52 of the $118 million to compensate for the loss of those funds. Similarly, the Finance Committee struck provisions of the House’s version of the budget that would have instituted Keno in New Hampshire, a move that the House anticipated would yield roughly $12 million in the next biennium; accordingly, it will need another $12 million to fill the hole in the underlying budget. The Finance Committee also rejected the House’s attempts to transfer $4 million in funds related to the recent MTBE legal settlement to be used to meet General Fund expenses; that $4 million too will need to come out of the difference in baseline estimates. Factoring in these funding commitments, the Senate is left with just $50 million with which to work.

All of this, of course, assumes that the Senate will neither seek to generate additional revenue nor attempt to reduce projected collections. Given the Senate’s prior approval of reductions in the rates of the BPT and the BET via SB 1 and SB 2, the latter seems far more likely than the former at this stage. In fact, if the substance of both SB 1 and SB 2 were incorporated into the budget, the result would be the loss of approximately $28 million in FY16-17 and upwards of $80 million biennially once fully implemented. In other words, to put SB 1 and SB 2 into effect, the Senate would need to use another $28 million of the $118 million difference in baseline revenue estimates.
 
The Senate Finance Committee is scheduled to take up the budget for the Department of Health Human Services tomorrow. That budget represents the single largest set of differences between the Governor’s and House’s versions of the FY 2016-2017 budget, with the latter providing approximately $120 million less in General Funds for services for the developmentally disabled, the elderly, and the homeless, among others. Yet, it already appears that only a portion of the Senate’s higher revenue estimates will be available to restore funding for public services designed to assist and to protect the most vulnerable citizens of the Granite State. Any attempt to reduce business taxes as part of the FY16-17 budget would only further reduce the degree to which the Senate is able to reverse the House’s decisions.
 
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