Waiting for Wednesday on the Budget
Welp, the budget “drops” (I believe that’s current hip vernacular, right?) in the House tomorrow afternoon at 1 PM. And no one has a clue what’s in it but a select few. I heard NBC 10’s Bill Rappleye say this morning on the John DePetro Show that he couldn’t find anything out and it doesn’t look like the ProJo–or the people they interviewed–have any idea either.
“I haven’t heard a thing,” Dan Beardsley, executive director of the Rhode Island League of Cities and Towns, said Monday. “But I’m not looking forward to it.”
“Conjecture has it there will be some changes on the revenue side,” said John Simmons, executive director of the business-backed Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council.
Simmons said he was aware of high-level discussions involving potential changes in the state’s tax rate on capital gains and the alternative flat tax, among others. “But until you see it, it’s all rumors in the hallways.”
“At this point it is fluid. I don’t think anything’s been firmly decided,” said Sen. Charles J. Levesque, D-Portsmouth. But “the broad outlines we’ve known about for a while.”
Specifically, Levesque said there isn’t broad support for raising new taxes or going after the already depleted state work force to close the deficit.
“There aren’t that many places where you could get the type of money you’re talking about — especially if you’re not talking about enhancing revenues,” he said, specifically noting expected cuts in state aid to municipalities and broad pension changes.