Senator Dix: Addressing Iowa’s Budget Challenges

On Wednesday, Governor Reynolds confirmed a special session was not needed to deal with a budget shortfall for Fiscal Year 2017, the budget that was approved by Senate Democrats last year and ended June 30.

To cover the predicted $14.6 million shortfall, the Governor plans on transferring money from state’s economic emergency fund. State revenue dipped from an expected growth rate of 2.7 percent in the FY 2017 budget, to actual growth of 2.5 percent. This decrease reduced projected revenue from $7.106 billion to actual revenue of $7.095 billion.

We have always known it was going to be a tough budget year. As recently as 2013 the state had approximately $927 million in surplus revenue. From that year to last year, Senate Republicans sounded the alarm about the rate of spending. Spending above ongoing revenue year after year brought the state budget to this point.  Senate Republicans have promised time and time again to manage the state’s budget more responsibly while also keeping our promises to education and improving career opportunities for Iowans.

Last fall, Iowans overwhelmingly chose Senate Republicans to take our state in a different direction – one that is fiscally responsible, attractive to job creators, and a place families want to come and put down roots. Since that time we have set upon the task of spending restraint, and the FY 2018 budget spends less than the FY 2017 budget the legislature passed during the 2016 session. Iowans work hard for their money and the state needs to be prudent on where and how we are spending tax dollars – your hard-earned money.

As we close the book on one budget year and start to focus on the next, Senate Republicans will continue to ensure our state is spending your tax dollars wisely and where they would be best used.

Let’s make it happen!