Even with $1.2 Billion Surplus Democrat Plan Seeks Additional $174 Million from Reserves
Santa Fe – A proposal put forth by House Democrats that increases spending to record levels passed out of the House Appropriations and Finance Committee on Monday. House Bill 2 (HB 2) calls for an irresponsible spending increase of over 11% to more than $7 billion. Despite a budget surplus over $1 billion, House Democrats are proposing to raid the state’s reserve fund by $174 million while also increasing taxes on nearly every New Mexican. Additionally, some of the biggest spending increases in HB 2 go to the Governor’s and the Speaker’s office.
“This level of spending is reckless, unsustainable and will only lead to tax increases on all New Mexico families this year and cuts to education in the future,” said Rep. Jason Harper (R-Rio Rancho).
While House Democrats plan to set aside $150 million to pay off Hollywood corporations in another bill, the items in this proposal include:
· 200% budget increase of the Speaker’s Office
· 30% budget increase for the Governor’s Office
· More than 15% increase for the Taxation Department
· 10% increase for the Lt. Governor’s Office
For comparison, the proposal includes smaller increases for critical services that serve all New Mexicans, including:
- 10.4% to Children, Youth and Families Department
- Less than 1% for the Department of Public Safety
- 2.7% of the Aging and Long-Term Services Department
- 0% for the Developmental Disability Planning Council
“The budget increases outlined in the proposal show where the Democrats priorities really are: growing government in Santa Fe,” Rep. Rebecca Dow (R-Truth or Consequences). “Taxpayer dollars belong to all New Mexicans, including our neighbors in the rural parts of the state, and they deserve to benefit before bureaucracies in Santa Fe.”
Later this week, House Republicans will present a reasonable alternative to the Democrats irresponsible spending proposal.