Thursday, February 19, 2015

A PLACE TO START: GOVERNOR'S BUDGET ADDRESS

Had a chance to read the New Governor's Budget Address.

He used a lot of "weasel words" when it came to safety net things but then he turned around and refused to rule out revenue increases, again by indirection.

He used the classic worst examples of a a relatively small number of pensioners to suggest that our previous pension system was improvident (as opposed to our pay scales).  No more dishonest than any other Governor.

He tried to give comfort to the justice system (court Reporters), Corrections (Officers) and TANF/Medicaid families that there would be money to continue those things in the short term. He was pretty mysterious about all that but had a relatively positive view.

His "immediate Tier 2" pension proposal was dead on arrival but he did put up one thing that could sell and could make literally everybody happy.

He proposed a present value buyout of pensions for State employees.  The takers could then either put that money into the new State Defined Contribution Fund or draw it out.  I know several state employees who would take the seed money, quit the State and start a business if that were an option.  I know some others who would salt in the Defined Contribution Fund and pound money into it for the last years of their State Employment.

Anyhow, I think anytime the Governor goes to the Capital and tosses out even one useful idea, it's a win.  

Let's see if he can walk the walk and get this part of his otherwise unrealistic budget passed.  I'll be rooting for him.  A good idea is a good idea.

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