After years of papering over imbalanced state budgets, the new Governor and Republican Leadership in the Legislature committed to achieving a structurally balanced budget. A budget that spends only those monies that are available provides the state with fiscal stability, improves credit ratings, and establishes a better climate for businesses looking to expand.
As our state economy slowly continues to improve after the recession, there is a temptation to immediately expand state services. By holding to a conservative approach as revenues increase, Arizona will be in a stronger position to prioritize and allocate available resources to help the most crucial areas of our state.
- Structurally Balanced Budget by FY 2018:
- $717 million projected shortfall in FY 2015
- $257 million projected shortfall in FY 2016
- $125 million projected shortfall in FY 2017
- $33 million projected positive structural balance in FY 2018.
Even as difficult decisions were made to produce a structurally balanced budget, leaders made sure K-12 education was not harmed. In fact, K-12 spending has a net increase of $105 million General Fund spending from FY 2015 to FY 2016. That growth is significant given that Arizona was facing a $1 billion deficit going into budget discussions.
- K-12 – Overall Total K-12 Spending Increased by $105 million:
- $91 million to fully fund formula increases
- $85 million increase in K-12 inflation funding
- $74 million for additional K-12 inflation funding
- $0.5 million for Teach For America
- $1.0 million for JTED Soft Capital
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