It’s estimated that the state
will need to raise roughly $30 million in new transportation revenue in
order to pull down the maximum amount of federal funds and there are several
revenue options being considered at the Statehouse.
The Vermont Arts Council’s annual state appropriation has been close to $500,000 for the
past decade, but the council says if it stays at that level, it will actually
have less money in the fiscal year starting next July.
Republican lawmakers say they found some things to like in Governor
Peter Shumlin’s budget address. They praised his proposals to reform the
state’s environmental permitting process and his call to consolidate
school supervisory unions.
Gov. Peter Shumlin has outlined a budget for the next fiscal
year that calls for no increases in income or sales taxes and relies on
projections of increasing revenue due to an improving economy to spend
more on higher education and in other areas.
Bernie Sanders is leading an effort among Senate Democrats to raise taxes on
the wealthy as part of a deficit-reduction plan. Sanders
argues that the final package should be a balance between budgets cuts and new
House Speaker Shap Smith has given lawmakers their marching orders: don’t hike taxes,
even to save social programs from budget cuts. He’s
asked the House tax-writing committee to stick to
the Shumlin Administration’s plan to limit new revenue sources.
"Federalism" may be a word that conjures dusty text books and vague
memories of 8th grade history class, but it’s the cornerstone of some of the
most compelling and divisive debates we have about modern issues.