Jim Geringer on Budget & Economy
Former Republican WY Governor
Spend one-time revenue on one-time expenditures
We must be responsible in how we deal with the forecast surplus. Use one-time funds [such as mineral revenue] to cover unique or non-recurring obligations. I ask your support to do the following:
Source: 2001 State of the State Address to Wyoming Legislature
, Jan 10, 2001
- Determine how much of the surplus is sustainable
beyond the next two biennia. I estimate that long-term sustainable revenues will support about $198M per biennium of new spending.
- Set aside reasonable and prudent reserves [including] $72M for a statutory reserve (5% of estimated general fund
receipts) and $50M to expand the Spending Policy Reserve to include mineral income.
- A partial restoration of funds lost by the Water Development: allocate $75M of the one-time funds.
- $65M for endowment funds for the University and our Community
- Spend one-time revenue on one-time expenditures. Donít fund on-going obligations without the assurance of future revenue.
- I recommend reducing statewide sales and use taxes by a half percent, effective during FY2001 only.
Bankruptcy reform: limit Chapter 7; protect states' role.
Geringer adopted the National Governors Association policy:
The Governors are particularly concerned that bankruptcy reform legislation address the following issues:
Source: NGA Economic Development Policy EDC-21: Bankruptcy Reform 01-NGA2 on Feb 15, 2001
- Prevent Chapter 7 Use by Those with the Ability to Pay: Present bankruptcy law does not prevent use of Chapter 7 by those with ability to repay, nor does it require that debtors use Chapter 13, which would require them to repay creditors what the debtor can afford. The Governors strongly support federal efforts to prevent debtors from using Chapter 7 when they are financially able to pay some or all of their unsecured debts.
- Encourage Payment of Domestic Support Obligations: Bankruptcy interferes significantly with statesí ability to assist citizens owed domestic support and to collect unpaid domestic support owed them. The Governors strongly encourage Congress to ensure that any federal bankruptcy reform requires that domestic support obligations have the highest possible repayment priority, that all domestic support obligations be nondischargeable,
and that commencement of bankruptcy not prevent the continued collection of child and other support obligations.
- Give State Claims Parity with Federal Claims in Bankruptcy: Today, bankruptcy rightly gives certain preferences in payment to federal claims against the bankruptcy estate, but similar treatment is not always accorded state claims. The Governors strongly support congressional efforts to reform the treatment of state claims in bankruptcy to provide parity of treatment with federal claims.
- Protect the State Role: The Governors oppose efforts to preempt state authority to determine exemptions under state bankruptcy law. Currently, debtors have a right to choose between federal and state exemptions. The Governors support efforts to shape bankruptcy reform policy that protects the rights of states to determine their own standards instead of having uniform federal regulations imposed without regard for individual state needs.
Uphold commitments to states before other spending.
Geringer adopted the National Governors Association position paper:
The Issue The major budget issue will be over the surplus and how big of a surplus there will be. How much will be dedicated to paying down the national debt, how much to tax cuts, how much to increase defense spending, what to do about key discretionary spending programs, and whether and how to change key entitlement programs, such as Medicaid, Medicare, and Social Security? How these decisions are made could have significant impacts on the federal-state partnership, especially as they affect vital health and human services programs. What will happen to funding for priority state domestic discretionary programs for the federal fiscal year? When will Congress act?
NGAís Position Before considering new spending initiatives or tax cuts, the federal government must first uphold its current commitments to the states.
Source: National Governors Association "Issues / Positions" 01-NGA8 on Sep 14, 2001
Maintain & enforce existing spending caps in the future.
Geringer adopted the Republican Main Street Partnership issue stance:
What we offer today are not the precise spending decisions of a given year's budget; rather, we call upon the Congress and the nation to adopt the following guidelines for our fiscal policy over the next decade. This long-term blueprint is essential for maintaining both the immediate public-sector goal of balancing the budget and the private-sector goal of a healthy economy. This can be achieved through the following steps:
Source: Republican Main St. Partnership Issue Paper: Fiscal Policy 98-RMSP5 on Sep 9, 1998
- A commitment to maintaining and enforcing existing spending caps in the future, when such discipline becomes more difficult to achieve;
- A careful and considerate re-definition of the federal role in society (what should be the legitimate and proper role of the federal government in the twenty-first century, and how do we prioritize competing demands?); and
- An evaluation of implementing tax cuts based on their social fairness.
Page last updated: Nov 23, 2011