The Commonwealth of Kentucky must balance its budget annually and operate within its means. Although Kentucky is a "balanced budget" state by legal requirement, our real annual deficits continue and our overall debt continues to rise. The budget is being "balanced" by raiding funds set aside for specific purposes like education of nurses and firefighters, or by borrowing from the coming year to satisfy what would be a deficit in the current year. On paper these maneuvers work; in realty they do not, and the credit rating of Kentucky continues to fall.
Balancing the budget requires that either revenues (taxes, fees, etc.) increase, or expenses decrease, or a measure of both. Kentuckians individually already are taxed enough and subjected to numerous fees, but revenue can increase. When Kentuckians start businesses, when businesses locate in Kentucky, and when Kentucky businesses expand, more Kentuckians earn a wage and tax revenues increase. Kentucky can create a better climate for job creation by passing legislation addressing its enormous pension debt, making Kentucky a "right to work" state and putting its financial house in order. When Kentucky fully enforces its existing tax code, property taxes and lien system, revenue will increase significantly without creating one new tax.
Further, spending must be decreased, especially in the immediate future. The Commonwealth has decreased spending over recent years, but spending must be at the highest level of prioritization and efficiency. Operating in excess of revenue places a debt burden upon the Commonwealth's children and grandchildren. Families live within their means to support one another, not place debt upon future generations. The Commonwealth must do the same by prioritizing each expense. Spending must beabsolutely essential for immediate purposes or long-term investment. Each prioritized expense must then be examined for inefficiency and waste.
(C) 2014. All rights reserved. Paid for by Jason Petrie Campaign Fund.