Disrespectful House budget passes

May 06, 2019

The House budget proposal passed Friday on a 61-55 floor vote with little debate.

The proposal disrespects state employees with a raise of only 1% or $500, whichever is greater, for most workers. Adding insult to injury, the raise would not take effect until January 1, 2020, six months into the state’s fiscal year. The measure allocates a mere $44 million for pay raises, which is less than two-tenths of 1% of the entire $24 billion budget.

The budget bill contains no COLA or supplement for retiree pensions for the coming fiscal year, even as lawmakers touted revenue surpluses and tax cuts for corporations.

The proposal contains $39 million for funding for the State Health Plan in the first year of the biennium, which is a severe underfunding that would force it to use reserves.

Following the budget unveiling on Tuesday, SEANC issued a news release calling on all House members to vote against the proposal.

“This budget is a slap in the face,” said SEANC President Jimmy Davis. “House leaders have failed to prioritize public services and disrespected the people who provide them. House members of both parties should reject this plan.”

It's important to note that this is not the final budget. State employees and retirees should reach out to their Senators and tell them this budget is unacceptable.