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Legislature Moves Budgets Forward

Apr 23, 2021

House and Senate Appropriations Subcommittees began reporting the budget bills within their purview this week. Most notably, several House subcommittees chose to appropriate on a quarterly basis, instead of the traditional method of appropriating for the entire fiscal year. Chairs of those subcommittees stated this would allow for better oversight on appropriated funds. However, some have spoken out against this untraditional method, including State Budget Director Dave Massaron.

Items within the Senate budgets include:

    • Funding to hire and train approximately 800 correctional officers annually
    • Increased funding to help former offenders with job training and employment
    • A $600,000 increase for the Problem Solving Courts
    • Funding for state universities and community colleges would remain the same as the current Fiscal Year
    • A 2% increase in local revenue sharing
    • Increased funding for attendance recovery – helping schools and families re-engage kids that have had trouble with virtual schooling

Items within the House budgets include:

    • $15 million for a dam safety emergency fund
    • $25 million to address PFAS and other emergency contaminants
    • Does not include funding to continue the $2/hour wage increase for direct care workers, but does include a $100 placeholder for the item
    • $500,000 for a potential children’s indigent defense program
    • $226 million for local roads and bridges

The budgets move forward to the full House and Senate Appropriations Committees for further consideration.

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