Monday, October 09, 2006

Arkansas' Budget Surplus

Baxter Bulletin
Lawmakers are starting the budget process with a $721 million surplus to play with.
Both major party candidates are already eyeing portions of the surplus for various proposals and have suggested different ways to eliminate the state's 6-cent tax on groceries.

I'm betting a lot of people are looking at the surplus and are putting their grubby little hands in for a piece of the pie.
Legislative leaders say they're going to be cautious about the surplus, which could already be whittled away by a series of requests from state agency heads.

Yeah, we know what this means. Legislators are going to make sure that as little as possible is returned to the taxpayers, if at all.
Democratic Party nominee Mike Beebe has said he wants to phase out the [grocery]tax over time and tie its elimination to state revenue growth, while Republican Asa Hutchinson says there's enough money in the surplus to eliminate the tax immediately

At least there is one candidate (Asa) that is saying that Arkansas taxpayers are going to get a tax break. Beebe, who speaks with divided tongue, appears to have no intention to eliminating the grocery tax. If he truly intended to cut the grocery tax he'd leave out the "tie its elimination to state revenue growth." The state revenue growth will never reach a level that Beebe would cut the grocery tax.

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