Sasse Say Rhode Islanders Are the “Losers” in this Year’s RI Budget
Tuesday, June 27, 2017
Sasse says Rhode Island will start the new fiscal year with functionally a near $50 million deficit. The comments came during his weekly appearance on GoLocal LIVE's Business Monday.
Related Slideshow: FY18 House Finance Budget
The state's community college is poised to be the sole beneficiary of the Governor's Promise scholarship program.
It would make Rhode Island the fourth state to have tuition-free community college, allowing every resident the opportunity to earn an associate's degree tuition free. There is no means testing for the program and few standards.
The cost would be roughly $3 million in the FY18 (for the first cohort of students) and then $6 million the following year there are two classes.
As part of negotiations -- and the fiscal realities facing Rhode Island with a nearly $140 million shortfally, the Speaker announced Thursday that $25 million will be cut in general spending.
"It's something we discussed with the Governor and she thinks she can make [it] work," said Matteillo.
Also on the chopping block -- funding for the legislative office to the tune of $2 million.
Elderly and Disabled Bus Riders
After levying fares on some of the most needy RIPTA bus riders (the elderly and disabled) for the first time this past year, which resulted in strong public outcry, the House Finance budget contains just over $3 million -- for each of the next two years -- to refund the program this coming year.
Mattiello noted that after the two years is up, it is up to the Governor to find the funding.
On Thursday, Raimondo learned she is poised to get a piece (jCCRI) of her free college tuition proposal, which had been a major focal point of her budget proposal - and political strategy.
On the flip side, she is tasked with finding $25 million in government spending to cut, in order to balance the budget.
Unlike the May estimating conference, where Rhode Island revenues were found to be off nearly $100 million plus, the Governor can't say she didn't see this coming.
Medical Marijuana Expansion
In June, Raimondo called for an increase in medical marijuana dispensaries and an increase in licensing fees to generate $1.5 million in revenue for the state.
She called for "no less than six licensed compassion centers."
On Thursday, Mattiello said it was not in the budget, due the proposal's late timing.
Davies High School
The House finance budget contains additional help for manufacturing, including $3.6 million to upgrade facilities at Davies Career and Tech.
While Mattiello made scant mention of cuts in the briefing Thursday - save for the $25 million out of government spending -- the question was raised as to where the rest of the $140 million shortfall will come from.
"Millions in cuts came from the Commerce Corp budget. The budget kept the Rebuild RI funding, but money for several other Commerce programs were reduced," said Larry Berman, spokesman for Mattiello.
- Gary Sasse: Deep in Debt in the Ocean State
- Gary Sasse: Grading the Governor’s Fiscal Stewardship
- Gary Sasse: Adequate Education: The Civil Rights Issue of Our Time
- Gary Sasse: Focusing on Effective State Leadership
- Gary Sasse: Can a State Infrastructure Bank Help Rebuild RI?
- Gary Sasse: Gubernatorial Leadership—The Defining Issue in 2014
- Gary Sasse: Rekindling the American Dream in Rhode Island
- Gary Sasse: Is RI’s Tax Climate Really The 5th Worst?
- Gary Sasse: Is a Constitutional Convention Really Needed?
- Sasse: Vote Questions If Higher Taxes Result In Better Schools
- Gary Sasse: Rudderless in the Ocean State
- Gary Sasse: Small Wins Strategy—A Case for Business Tax Reform
- Gary Sasse: Rhode Island’s Students Need an Education Bill of Rights
- Gary Sasse “The Money Man” Talks About the Implications of Healthcare Consolidation to RI
- Sasse Asks Why Do the PawSox Owners Need Any Subsidy
- Guest MINDSETTER™ Sasse: Are Governors Economic Miracle Workers?
- Sasse “The Money Man” Warns About RI’s Lack of Strategy “Hard to Get There”
- Sasse Calls on General Assembly to Audit RI Commerce Corp
- Gary Sasse “The Money Man” Talks About Trump’s Budget Impact on RI
- Gary Sasse: Are Gubernational Candidates Being Realistic and Focused?
- Gary Sasse: As Goes Providence, So Does the State
- Mattiello, Sasse in Heated Battle Over RI Tax Policy
- Guest MINDSETTER™ Sasse: Unlocking Opportunity By Reinventing The War On Poverty
- Sasse Say Rhode Islanders Are the “Losers” in this Year’s RI Budget