budget

Don Rush

NEW CASTLE, Del. (AP) - The panel that sets Delaware's official revenue forecast is meeting to update its projections for the current and upcoming fiscal years.

Monday's meeting of the Delaware Economic and Financial Advisory Council comes one month after it made its first update of the year, lowering its revenue estimate for the current year by $39.4 million compared to its December estimate.

Don Rush

Mayor Jim Ireton has set a deadline of July 1st for Wicomico County to come to an agreement on tax relief for city residents when it comes to providing  city fire and emergency services.

If the deadline is not met those services will no longer be extended beyond the city limits.

That was the message from the Mayor to the City Council yesterday during a discussion of his plans for the 2016 fiscal year.

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Mayor Jim Ireton will lay out his 2016 fiscal budget for the Salisbury City Council this afternoon.

Issues in his spending plan range from the first ever reduction in Urban Service sewer rates and public safety to infrastructure improvements and a new zoo exhibit.

In addition, the Mayor is expected to bring up – what has been called -- the Nuclear Option for Fire Department and EMS service.

The Mayor is seeking tax relief from Wicomico County for duplicative services.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Republican Gov. Larry Hogan says he is pleased overall with the way his first legislative session has ended, but he had his share of disagreements with the Democratic-led Legislature.

Lawmakers approved several scaled-back versions of Hogan's priorities, but the governor battled with Democrats over state spending.

Hogan's push to make charter schools more flexible was approved. He also won some tax relief on military pensions for people over 65. With help from Democrats, he also fulfilled a campaign promise to end state-mandated stormwater fees.

mdleg.maryland.gov

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland Democrats are standing firm in a budget standoff with Republican Gov. Larry Hogan.

The Senate president and House speaker held a news conference Monday morning on the last day of the session to say they will not back down on fully funding education, health programs and a cost-of-living adjustment for state employees in the budget both chambers already have passed.

Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller says Democrats "cannot pick and choose" who to cut between state employees, vulnerable adults and public school children.

msa.maryland.gov

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - It's crunch time for the Maryland General Assembly, and lawmakers still have a budget to pass.

The 90-day legislative session is scheduled to end Monday at midnight.

Gov. Larry Hogan proposed a budget compromise on Saturday, but it's unclear if the Legislature is willing and able to pass some of Hogan's legislative initiatives that the governor says are important to the deal.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland Senate and House negotiators are scheduled to meet to reconcile budget differences.

The panel is planning to meet Tuesday afternoon.

Del. Maggie McIntosh, who is on the negotiating team, says the House and Senate are very close to resolving differences in the Democratic-led Legislature. However, she says they need to bring Republican Gov. Larry Hogan into the conversation.

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There's an afterglow from the Maryland Senate vote that unanimously approved the $40 billion budget.

The surprise outcome caught many members cheering as the final vote count went up on the board.

Capital News Service reporter Anjali Shastri was there and describes the scene and the issues for Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush. 

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has signed a new state budget that includes a pay increases for state employees, boosts cash benefits for welfare recipients and has more money for the governor to spend on economic development.

The Democratic governor signed the budget Thursday at the Capitol while touting his good working relationship with Republican leaders on the state's spending plan.

McAuliffe did not try and amend the budget that state lawmakers approved last month.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Senate has voted unanimously for the state's $40 billion budget.
 
The vote was 46-0 Thursday.
 
Lawmakers made extra cuts to restore scaled-back education funding initially proposed in Gov. Larry Hogan's budget. A 2 percent cost-of-living adjustment for state employees also has been restored.
 
Democrats and Republicans spoke positively about the bipartisanship that went into the Senate's budget work.
 

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Senate is scheduled to consider changes to the state's $40.4 billion budget plan.

Two budget bills that are working in tandem to balance the state's books for the next fiscal year will be before the Senate on Wednesday.

The House of Delegates approved the measures last week.

The House restored money for education that Gov. Larry Hogan had scaled back to help balance the state's books in the long term. The House also restored money for a 2 percent cost-of-living adjustment for state employees.

Don Rush

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland House of Delegates has passed the state's $40.4 billion budget.

The House voted 129-10 Thursday for the budget bill, with 89 Democrats voting for the measure and 40 Republicans. Ten Republicans voted against it.

The House also voted 122-17 for a companion bill needed to balance the budget.

The bill restores education funding that had not been as high as Democratic lawmakers had been hoping for in Republican Gov. Larry Hogan's budget. The House also restored a 2 percent cost-of-living adjustment for state employees.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland House of Delegates is scheduled to vote on the state's $40.7 billion budget.

The vote is expected Thursday afternoon.

The House has made room in the budget to restore education funding that had not been as high as Democratic lawmakers had been hoping for in Republican Gov. Larry Hogan's budget. The House also restored a 2 percent cost-of-living adjustment for state employees.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland House of Delegates is taking up the state's $40 billion budget.

Lawmakers are scheduled Wednesday to consider changes to the budget plan for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1.

A House panel voted unanimously last week to make room to add more money for education and to restore a 2-percent cost-of-living adjustment for state employees.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Legislative budget writers are continuing their review of budget requests for one of Delaware's biggest government agencies, the Department of Health and Social Services.

Wednesday's agenda includes a discussion of the Medicaid and medical assistance programs, which account for more than half of the entire department's budget.

One concern for lawmakers is how to cut down on fraud and waste in the Medicaid program, which costs state taxpayers about $700 million a year.

Wicomico County School logo

Wicomico County could soon have an elected school board.

Last night there was almost unanimous support from those attended a public hearing by the Board of Education.

Harry Basehart said that it should follow the model set by Caroline County where the board reflects the gender, ethnic and racial diversity of the local residents.  

Many complained that the Board is accountable to the governor not the county residents even though education takes up half of the Wicomico County budget.

legis.delaware.gov

Delaware lawmakers said no to Governor Jack Markell’s proposal to cut $12.6 million in property tax breaks for seniors.

The plan cuts in half the $500 state subsidy paid to seniors to help with their tax bills.

During a hearing by the Joint Finance Committee yesterday Senator Bruce Ennis told the governor’s budget officials that the reduction would be difficult to get through the General Assembly.

It’s part of Markell’s effort to balance his $3.9 billion budget which still goes up by 2.4 percent over current levels.

Don Rush

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Members of the General Assembly's budget-writing committee are set to begin hearings and discussion on Gov. Jack Markell's proposed $3.9 billion operating budget for the upcoming fiscal year.

The Joint Finance Committee was to convene Tuesday to begin a monthlong series of hearings on individual agency budget requests.

The committee was to begin its work with an overview of state revenues and Markell's budget proposal, followed by individual agency hearings for the state budget office and the Delaware National Guard.

Don Rush

The battle of the budget in Annapolis is about to begin. Republican Governor Larry Hogan took some sharp swipes at his Democratic predecessor Martin O'Malley at Marc Steiner's Annapolis Summit as top Democratic Legislative leaders took aim at his budget proposal. Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush was there and filed this report.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A Maryland board has approved a plan to address about $410 million of a budget shortfall for the current fiscal year to better position the state to tackle a deficit in the next fiscal year.

The Board of Public Works voted 3-0 Wednesday for the plan.

It includes about $206 million in cuts. Another $108 million will come from spending transfers. There also are some savings from early retirement offerings and cutting vacant positions.

Don Rush

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov. Martin O'Malley is bringing a proposal to the Board of Public Works to address more than $400 million of a budget shortfall.

The outgoing Democratic governor is planning to bring about $211 million in spending reductions to the board Wednesday morning. The plan also includes about $199 million in fund transfers and revenues to help fill the gap.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov.-elect Larry Hogan has scheduled a briefing on Maryland's budget.

The briefing with adviser Robert Neall is set for Thursday in Annapolis.

Hogan says his incoming administration has been examining upcoming budget problems. He focused his campaign for governor on fiscal concerns.

Hogan announced Wednesday that Neall will be a special adviser on fiscal matters in his administration. Neall has been reviewing the budget as part of Hogan's transition team.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Larry Hogan says Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley is rushing to implement policies under the wire before he leaves office next month.

The Republican governor-elect said Tuesday he believes it would be better for many of the decisions to be made by newly elected officials. He says that's because Maryland voters decided to go in a different direction on Election Day. O'Malley's a Democrat.

Hogan takes office Jan. 21. He spoke to reporters after meeting with the state's five Republican county executives.

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At this week’s county council meeting Wicomico County Executive Bob Culver cut bond funding for the construction of a new West Salisbury Elementary School from the county’s capital improvement budget.

The newly elected Republican slashed the $1.25 million bond from the plan along with a $1.8 million bond for construction of the Westside Collector Road and another $1 million from improvements for the Wicomico Youth and Civic Center.

Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Gov. Terry McAuliffe says Virginia's economy is in a "very perilous" situation with potential federal defense cuts looming.

McAuliffe says he's open to considering eliminating tax relief programs in order to balance the state budget.

He and state lawmakers met with heads of several large companies Monday to discuss the state's economic outlook.

House Appropriations Committee Chairman S. Chris Jones says the executives told lawmakers to be cautious in their budgeting for next year.

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Republican Governor-elect Larry Hogan has tapped Democrat Robert Neall to take the lead on his budget and taxation transition team.

Neall is a former state senator, delegate and Anne Arundel county executive who became a Democrat in 1999 after saying he felt uncomfortable in the GOP.

Hogan described Neall as the most respected fiscal mind in the state of Maryland adding that nobody knows the tax and fiscal budget issue better.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Government agency heads are asking Markell administration budget officials for additional funding in the next fiscal year.

Chief Justice Leo Strine Jr. told state budget office officials on Monday that the judicial branch would like about $3 million in additional funding in fiscal 2016 on top of the $95 million in general funds that the court system received this year. Strine says more than 80 percent additional funding would to to employee costs and technology infrastructure.

Don Rush

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware budget officials are starting to lay the groundwork for developing a budget for next fiscal year.

Budget director Ann Visalli and her staff are beginning meetings this week to hear budget requests from various state agencies.

The meetings begin Wednesday with agency hearings that include the agriculture and economic development departments, and the Department of State.

Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia ended fiscal 2014 with a $438.5 million shortfall, a 1.6 percent drop from the year before.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe's administration announced the shortfall Thursday. His office did not say whether the shortfall would lead to budget cuts.

The governor signed a budget last month that had anticipated a smaller budget shortfall for fiscal 2014 of about $350 million.

Don Rush

DOVER, Del. (AP) - The legislature's budget writing committee has unanimously approved a pay raise for most state employees despite a $41 million gap between projected revenue and Gov. Jack Markell's spending plan for the fiscal year starting July 1.

Joint Finance Committee members on Tuesday voted to approve a $500 pay increase for most state employees effective Jan. 1. Overall personnel costs, including increased pension contributions and adjustments to teacher pay, would increase by about $22 million over the current year.

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