The House returned to Columbia on Wednesday to address the Governor’s 34 line-item vetoes for the $6 billion FY2011-2012 State Budget.
House Republicans rolled up their sleeves this year drafting a balanced, conservative spending plan focused on restraining government growth, funding core functions of government, responsibly paying down debt and increasing our rainy day reserve accounts.
As noted by Governor Haley in her press conference on Tuesday, there is “no pork included in this year’s budget.” We appreciate Governor Haley making note of the fiscal restraint used by lawmakers during this budget process and her focus on capping state spending – an issue that House Republicans have championed, passing spending limitations bills 6 times, including passing the Spending Limitations Bill (H. 3368) just this past March.
As I told you last week, this budget DID come in well below proposed growth caps – in fact it was tens of millions of dollars below growth caps.
Let me be clear – the State Budget falls under this spending cap because Conservative lawmakers acted responsibly, setting aside and not spending unprecedented appropriations for items such as debt repayment, and increasing rainy day reserve accounts:
• $146 million to unemployment debt repayment
• Up to $261 million which fully funds increases to the General Reserve Fund five years ahead of schedule
• $104.8 million dedicated to an additional back-up reserve account
• $198.6 million to fully fund general obligation bond payments.
Whether it’s a household budget, a business budget or the State Budget, Conservatives believe in responsibly paying down debt and building financial security through savings.
Ben Franklin probably said it best – “A penny saved is a penny earned” – Not spent.
Your House Republicans agree with Ben Franklin – paying down debts and increasing reserve accounts do not constitute “new spending” or “government growth”. In fact, it is quite the opposite and helps ensure financial solvency for South Carolina.
By cutting taxes and working against government growth, House Republicans have worked hard to ensure that South Carolinians have the lowest state taxes in the nation per capita according to the Tax Foundation, a well-known conservative think tank.
Taxpayers can rest assured that House Conservatives will slow government spending and continue the same responsible budgeting practices that have delivered over $20 BILLION in tax relief to hard-working South Carolina families.
Furthermore, House Republicans will continue fighting to focus our spending on core government services. Items crucial to the current and future prosperity of South Carolina were made a priority in this budget. Education funding, the safety of our students, job training, law enforcement education, and emergency preparedness are all vital services of government and were adequately addressed.
I am pleased to share with you that House Republicans have held the line on spending and we’ll continue fighting for South Carolina’s taxpayers in Columbia . Don’t forget, you can receive up-to-date information coming from the House on the Speaker’s Facebook Page and following the Speaker’s Twitter Feed.
Thank you for your continued participation in your government and letting your voice be heard. As always, please let me know if I can ever be of assistance.
SC Speaker of the House
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