Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

December 19, 2013

State expected to have moderate growth in next 2 years

FRANKFORT — The state will see moderate growth in revenues over the next two years, according to the group of outside economists who develop the projections, but not quite as much as they’d hoped when they last looked at the numbers in October.

The Consensus Forecasting Group – independent economists who advise the General Assembly on expected revenues before each budget cycle – said Thursday it expects the state General Fund to grow by 2.6 percent in each of the next two years.

That works out to about $246.2 million more next year than what is budgeted for the current year, which ends on June 30, 2014, and about $252.3 million more the following year.

That assumes total revenues for the General Fund of $9.79 billion next year and $10.04 billion in fiscal year 2016.

But the growth isn’t expected to keep up with demands, according to the governor’s budget office. Lawmakers have committed to putting at least $100 million new dollars into the employee pension fund while the teachers’ pension fund is looking for $400 million more next year. On top of that, the current budget was balanced by using some non-recurring funds which will also have to be replaced with new money in the next two-year budget. Medicaid costs are also expected to grow.

Lawmakers convene on Jan. 7 for the biennial exercise in crafting a state spending plan for the following two years, and they do so after having cut out $1.6 billion from the budget in the past six. That’s left public schools, universities and nearly every cabinet, state agency and department asking for more money next year.

Gov. Steve Beshear said earlier this week he wants to boost funding for education which has remained flat for five years as well.

Some of the revenue growth is attributable to tax changes made in the last session of the legislature rather than economic growth – about $100 million of the new revenue comes from those changes.

Text Only
Local News
  • 0420singer2web.jpg Young Johnson singer strives for ‘tears of joy'

    Marlana VanHoose says she was humming “Jesus Loves Me” before she could even talk.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Second trial delay sought

    The lead attorney for Morgan County Judge-Executive Tim Conley has requested his client’s trial date be pushed back again.

    April 20, 2014

  • Accelerating the positive

    One thing Sherry Jacobs knows about herself is she is not a quitter.

    April 20, 2014

  • Bike season in full swing

    A recent short cold spell didn’t keep kept cyclists from venturing outdoors to explore the new bike trails snaking through Greenup County.

    April 20, 2014

  • What's happening: 4/21/14

    Fan Fest, an open house at King’s Daughters Medical center’s Specialties Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine and Marshall Orthopaedics, will be from 3 to 6 p.m. Thursday at offices in Suite G30 of Medical Plaza B, 613 23rd St.

    April 20, 2014

  • Crime victims’ group to host conference

    Kentucky Voices for Victims of Crime, an advocacy organization for those who have suffered at the hands of criminals, will have its annual memorial conference next week.
     

    April 20, 2014

  • Boyd FFA to have test drive fundraiser

    The Boyd County FFA Chapter will have a test-drive fundraiser at Superior Chrysler Dodge Jeep of Ashland from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday to raise money for the National FFA Organization in support of local FFA chapter leadership programs.
     

    April 20, 2014

  • newwendy1.jpg Ashland woman develops pregnancy journals for mom, dad

    An Ashland woman has a way of helping parents everywhere.
    Wendy Sparks, 47, wrote The journals, which are for parents to keep for themselves and their children during pregnancy.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0420eggs0051.jpg Acres and acres of eggs

    A dozen volunteers spent the morning Saturday scattering more than 6,000 plastic eggs around the Greenup County Farm Bureau’s 10-acre field Saturday morning.
     

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • Volunteers to pack thousands of meals for hungry Haitians

    Members of the First Baptist Church in Grayson are planning for the third year in a row to pack thousands of meals for starving people in Haiti, and they need help to do it.
     

    April 19, 2014