Governor Nixon tells state lawmakers tonight how he would like to spend money in the next budget. But Nixon already has antagonized some of the people who will decide how the money is spent.
He has been traveling throughout the state talking about the things he’ll recommend the legislature do this year. But none of those issues is a sure thing. He and the legislature already are at odds about how much money will be available for programs and services in the next budget.
Senate appropriations chairman Kurt Schaefer says House, Senate, and Governor’s staff members had agreed on the amount of tax money would be available for the next budget. Then the Governor’s people wanted lawmakers to agree to enlarge the figure by $140-million. “When everyone asked them…They just said they needed another 140 million more in the state budget. That’s not the way we do a budget in Missouri. That’s how they do a budget in Washington, D.C.,” he says.
On top of that, some Republicans are advocating hundreds of millions of dollars in tax cuts, reducing future revenues. Schaefer says tax cuts are okay but decisions about them should not be made until the legislature has decided what programs that have been underfunded for several years should benefit from better times.
You can watch the speech on Missourinet.com, starting at 6:45 tonight.