This week the full Senate gave approval to the fiscal year 2019 budget. After years of moving from one budget shortfall to the next, steps taken in previous years and work we’ve done this spring are helping us get the state budget on firm financial footing. We’ve reformed tax preferences that did not produce the benefits intended when they were originally enacted. We’ve taken a hard look at how off-the-top funding has often hamstrung lawmakers’ ability to prioritize funding during particularly challenging economic cycles. Through long meetings, negotiations and discussions, we were able to identify and pass new revenue streams to help avert the use of onetime funds—another issue that had resulted in a cycle of shortfalls.
For the first time in years, agencies were spared additional cuts with this budget. Also for the first time in years, we have been able to make greatly needed investments in core services vital to health, safety and wellbeing of our citizens—and we are on track to complete this work before the constitutional deadline of May 25.
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