States across this country are faced with budget shortfalls on an unprecedented scale. Tough decisions made in the past, and tougher decisions made during this budget process have led to a budget that House Majority members can point to as a roadmap for continued fiscal recovery. The House balanced this budget while being able to hold K-12 education harmless to the 2011 funding levels, while instituting only modest reductions to our higher education institutions, while protecting low income health care and while maintaining funding for other vital state services such as correctional facilities and public safety.
Further state restructuring and programmatic changes will be needed to move Missouri through this current financial crisis. Continuing work by the House Appropriations Committees and by the Interim Committee on Budget Transparency will enable this process to remain fluid and will allow members the needed knowledge of state services to continue to make fiscal decisions.
- Left more than $49 million on the balance sheet, a balanced budget that continues to meet the needs of all Missourians.
- Held funding for the Foundation Formula harmless.
- In light of recent historical declines in state revenues, the House Majority was able to again make education the #1 priority.$365k in cuts to the Missouri House of Representatives budget, further proof the House is taking the lead during this financial crisis.
- Reduced funding for Department Directors and Deputy Directors to a maximum level of $86,500, saving state taxpayers over $1.0 million.
- Held the Governor accountable for his excessive use of the state plane by restricting expenses from other state departments.
The House of Representatives continues their strong commitment to public education and this budget is a clear reflection of how the Missouri House is prepared to deal with the nation’s economic downturn. Included in this is the House Majority’s continued commitment to make K-12 education the highest priority. Holding the Foundation Formula harmless during these challenging economic times further proves this promise. Total funding for the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education will exceed $5.2 billion.
Also included is the House’s commitment to the state’s higher education system. The House exceeded the Governor’s funding levels for institutions by implementing the Preparing to Care program, a $12M increase over the Governor’s recommendation.
- Over $3 billion for the School Foundation Formula. This completes the House’s plan to fund both the FY 2011 and FY 2012 Foundation Formula at the same amount, mitigating wild funding disparities that would have occurred in the Governor’s initial plan.
- Funding for education also includes:
- Over $16 million for the Parents As Teachers program.
- A modest 7.0% reduction to higher education institutions.
- $7M increase for the A+ Program. This will fully fund all eligible students.
The Missouri economy—fueled by key budgetary and policy decisions passed by this General Assembly—is continuing to move in the right direction despite challenging economic times nationwide. Combined with the Quality Jobs Act, continued funding for job creation and incentives for innovation will be vital as we strive to climb out of this global financial recession.
- House funded over $2.1 million for innovation centers, the State MOFAST program and the Missouri Manufacturing Program. These programs will continue to assist businesses in job training/job retention programs throughout the State.
- Continued full funding for the Community College Jobs Retention Training ($10M), Community College New Jobs Training ($16M) and Jobs Development ($14.5M) programs. Combined, these programs will continue to aid in statewide workforce development.